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Abe defends security legislation

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...asserting that the legislation would decrease the risk of war rather than increase it.

It certainly does increase the risk of war. Japan was only able to engage in disastrous wars in the 1930s and 40s because the government thought it was above the law, disregarded the will of the people and silenced its critics. All 3 of these ingredients are present again today with Abe's unconstitutional security bills and state secrets law.

18 ( +19 / -1 )

Self Defense Forces Act, revamped U.S. Security Agreement , and Act on Cooperation for United Nations Peacekeeping Operations, all of which were debated and argued that they were 'unconstitutional' and with threats of Japan going back to the "old Imperial' days proved to be false.

This security bill is nothing more than an increased deterrence.

-17 ( +3 / -20 )

We should be very cautious about encouraging the country who originated the suicide attack as a legitimate form of war, to re-militarize. Old wounds never fully heal and most of Asia gets very nervous at the thought of a militaristic Japan. We could be encouraging an arms race that could lead to a nuclear Japan and proliferation throughout the region beyond just Japan and China...

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Abe said the numbers were “tough” and likely a result of misunderstandings over the bills.

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

Misunderstanding occurs when he does not say He want SDF be able to prevent foreign terrorists such as ISIS behead Jaanese people etc Maybe he plans to replace US forces in Japan with new made in Japan weapons and will train SDF instead of GIs in Japan? That he has to hide from US even it does not have to pay Omoi Yari fund?

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Irrespective how you fell about the current security legislation, one thing that is clear is that the current government has done an abysmal job of explaining the legislation to the country – and allowed the anti-war and other opposition groups to “control the narrative”, exaggerating and inflating what this legislation actually does. You still hear and see opponents stating that the legislation will “drag Japan into America’s wars”, when that is clearly not possible under the terms of the law. Several days ago the Japan Today had a good article that factually outlined the very restrictive elements of the legislation;

http://www.japantoday.com/category/politics/view/qa-the-ruckus-over-japans-military-legislation

The government needs to quickly re-energize its strategy to inform the public of what this legislation entails – and how it helps strengthen and add resilience to the US – Japan Security Alliance, but doesn’t in any way permit Japan to send troops overseas and engage in combat operations.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Nigelboy, at this point the actual contents of the security bill are irrelevant! You, me, and anyone else is wasting time debating the merits or demerits of the bill. How it was done is the only thing that matters. This is an outright assault on the concept of constitutionalism, and as a result is NOT merely a Japanese domestic politics issue. The Abe administration has set a precedent for any wannabe dictator anywhere who feels that a Constitution gets in the way of an agenda. Constitutions are difficult to revise ON PURPOSE, so that guys like Abe can't change the core character of a system of government against the will of the population! To my fellow Americans arguing in favor of the legislation, just try switching the name "Abe" with "Obama" and "Article 9" with the "2nd Amendment" and see if you can still support this with a straight face. Just imagine that Obama has a sizable majority, "reinterprets" the govt understanding of the right to bear arms, and proceeds to ban all firearms other than bolt action single shot hunting rifles AGAINST majority public opinion while openly belonging to an organization whose stated goal is one world government. But don't worry, he promises to "explain" the new law clearly AFTER THE LAW GOES INTO EFFECT! I don't care whether the security bill is reasonable or not, Abe and his cabal's actions cannot be justified under any circumstances!

6 ( +11 / -5 )

This is wrong,” he (Abe) said, asserting that the legislation would decrease the risk of war rather than increase it.

It's a bit like driving really fast in order to avoid accidents!

Makes total sense.

NOT!

10 ( +14 / -4 )

Nigelboy, at this point the actual contents of the security bill are irrelevant! You, me, and anyone else is wasting time debating the merits or demerits of the bill. How it was done is the only thing that matters

If so, the debate should be to change the Article itself or eliminate them all together for a government strictly adhering to the letter of this article is simply irresponsible. Imagine where Japan would be if no U.S. security agreement and no JSDF because the government at that time decided that the constitution didn't allow them during the heat of Cold War.

-13 ( +3 / -16 )

Lincolnman, I have long held your reasoned approach in high esteem, but this is far beyond an issue of "better explanation." This is about a government choosing to ignore a constitution against the will of that country's citizens, and using parliamentary shenanigans to create a fait accompli that will be very difficult to reverse. In short, it is explicitly anti-democracy. The fact that I am largely in favor of the legislation itself doesn't change that a bit. Abe and his cabinet should resign, the bill pulled and they should start over, knowing full well that it's going to take years, not months, because severe damage has been done to the whole idea of making Japan a "normal" military power through their use of Authoritarian politics.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Abe and his illegal legislation are sinking fast. It's no wonder people are confused about the legislation when Abe refuses to give a clear explanation. Why not ask the supine supreme court to review the bill and judge if it is constitutional or not?

8 ( +8 / -0 )

I agree, Nigelboy, that is what the debate should be about. If, through the constitutional process, the Japanese people choose to revise or even totally scrap the present constitution, that is their right to do so. But it is their right, not the present governments.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

You make a good point, Nigelboy. Collective self defense was not needed even during the heat of the Cold War when Japan and the U.S faced a real foe of some substance that threatened the whole world with nuclear weapons and sophisticated spying and proxy wars. So, why is it now?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

It's a bit like driving really fast in order to avoid accidents!

Or carrying guns to make everyone safer!

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I agree, Nigelboy, that is what the debate should be about. If, through the constitutional process, the Japanese people choose to revise or even totally scrap the present constitution, that is their right to do so. But it is their right, not the present governments.

Present government did no such thing. They presented a bill based on their own study group last summer and did not limit themselves to the opinions to be dominated by these constitutional scholars but international law experts as well who takes into consideration of jus naturale, bilateral treaty and it's supremacy, and simple common sense.

Those who are voicing their opposition are essentially the same types who argued against the formation of JSDF under SDF law and the revamped U.S. Security Agreement of 1960 but much tamer.

-13 ( +3 / -16 )

We should be very cautious about encouraging the country who originated the suicide attack as a legitimate form of war, to re-militarize.

"suicide attacks" predate kamikaze pilots. and japan already has a military, only its role has been altered. at least get your facts straight if you wanna criticize the defense bills.

its interesting that only 51% disapprove. so this suggest that almost half the country has no opinion or approve of what abe is doing. quite a remarkable number considering how sensationalistic this news has been in japan.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Hi everyone...Yesterday I watched a long studio interview with PM Abe on TV (from 5pm until 6:30pm) in which he used a form of 'kamishibai' to explain his party's thinking and the reforms. Anyone who watches Japanese TV knows that the use of paper models and props is a commonplace, but it was interesting that the PM was using this way to directly explain the policy. He created a narrative using paper models to explain the changes. To make the policy credible he needed to directly appeal to Japanese citizens through this way of making it clear. Like how kamishibai was used during the Allied Occupation to 'teach' democracy, this much more hi-tech version still has a story teller, pictures and some text to engage the viewer. Times change but some things still linger. It was made quite clear throughout the program through snippets from the Japanese interviewed at the beach or amusement parks that Anpo wasn't something that really interested them. However, others on the street were either critical or supportive of the policy changes. It was actually a fascinating TV show that featured a studio panel of commentators.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Not defending, but America would be lucky to at least have Congress involved before going to war, let alone collective self-defence. Long ways away from an executive war-making power the US has. Both US parties have no issue with this.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

this is far beyond an issue of "better explanation." This is about a government choosing to ignore a constitution against the will of that country's citizens, and using parliamentary shenanigans to create a fait accompli that will be very difficult to reverse. In short, it is explicitly anti-democracy. The fact that I am largely in favor of the legislation itself doesn't change that a bit. Abe and his cabinet should resign, the bill pulled and they should start over, knowing full well that it's going to take years, not months, because severe damage has been done to the whole idea of making Japan a "normal" military power through their use of Authoritarian politics.

Well, I see your point – ideally, the best way to enact these changes would have been to hold a referendum that permitted all citizens to cast their vote. On the other hand, I can see the argument that says that the public voted in the LDP, by a considerable margin in the last election, knowing that this view on collective self-defense was part of their election charter, and an initiative they would pursue.

I appreciate your view that this is an authoritarian move and beyond the authority of the government. I’m not familiar enough with the limits of Japan’s Constitution or power of the government to change to offer an opinion. I do think though, that if the public is presented a factual and accurate understanding of the legislation, that the current numbers supporting and non-supporting it would reverse.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Bye Bye Abe

5 ( +5 / -0 )

With China and aggressive Russia conducting naval exercises in the Sea of Japan soon, the Japanese peaceniks better think very carefully about PM Abe's pragmatic defense intentions. If Japan is not going to help the US in joint operations, than why should the Americans & others help Japan if China and Russia make aggressive moves against Japan? Goodness gracious me, where is the Samurai's noble spirit of helping others, & also defending the Japanese people. Stop all the politicking and be serious about acknowledging the serious threats facing your country.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The Present government did no such thing. They presented a bill based on their own study group last summer and did not limit themselves to the opinions to be dominated by these constitutional scholars but international law experts as well who takes into consideration of jus naturale, bilateral treaty and it's supremacy, and simple common sense.

Those who are voicing their opposition are essentially the same types who argued against the formation of JSDF under SDF law and the revamped U.S. Security Agreement of 1960 but much tamer. The problems with these people is that they are so devoid of reality and yet they make the largest noise. Of course when they are proven to be false, they hide like cock roaches when lights are turned and is waiting for the next opportunity to repeat the same lame rhetoric again.

Nigelboy, I'm not an international law expert so I won't even try to debate you on that. However, you're still debating the merits of the legislation itself, while conveniently overlooking that the constitution is being de facto amended without going through the process of constitutional amendment. No amount of rationalization, or even that some of the protesters are so-called "Moonbats" changes that core fact. If the "US imposed, keep Japan weak forever" constitution is stupid, then change it, but do it legitimately. "Better explanation?" The more they explain, the more the public turns against it! Constitutional revision cannot be illegitimate, that's why the hurdles are made so deliberately high.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@WildWilly Thank you writing Abe's kmishibai

0 ( +0 / -0 )

nigelboy

Of course when they are proven to be false, they hide like cock roaches when lights are turned and is waiting for the next opportunity to repeat the same lame rhetoric again.

Comparing people you don't agree with to cock roaches also makes you less than human.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

The 'reinterpretation' is the only the first stage up to 11 new bills that will establish new authorities, collective doctrines and strategies.

The legislation is noted by esteemed constitutionalists as an indistinctly vague introspective structure, ambiguous in defining 'collective self defense' in context to the 'integration of Japanese armed forces operations and that of the U.S. forces in Asia and around the world'.

Ok let's call it phase one, legislation contained within the bills subtlety removes geographic restrictions on where and when Japan armed forces can maintain active self-defense. Ultimately part of the new US-Japan defense guidelines allow expansion of bilateral security cooperation, the inclusion of 'mine-sweeping' sea lanes and 'interdiction' of maritime activities.

Significantly under unspecified scenarios, and without seeking consent from Diet parliamentarians deploy forces overseas. This preoccupation with Japan intercepting ballistic missiles launched by a rouge government or state, is in ignorance of the fact that US anti ballistic defense strategy has achieved a technical risk aversion capability as an improbable event.

Yoshihide Suga, chief cabinet secretary 'The security situation surrounding our country is extremely tense. So as to ensure peace and stability, we need to strengthen the Japan-US alliance and to enhance trust and cooperation among partners in the region. It is important to be ready for any eventuality. The purpose of the bills is to strengthen the deterrent and prevent conflict from happening''

There is more than a hint of paranoia in Suga's statement, devoid of any logical justification.

The US government are falling back on a classic political hedging strategy compelling the people of Japan to assume a even greater proportion of collective defense spending. Abe's LDP has pointedly loosened restrictions on arms exports and is actively reversing any decline in defense spending.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

June 22, PNM Abe stated

"Let's have a real debate in the Diet and ask the people to make a decision."

Did he decide against that?

https://www.jimin.jp/english/news/128322.html

Sunagawa Incident

In 1959, the Supreme Court judged that the presence of U.S. bases in the country did not run counter to the spirit of the Constitution’s war-renouncing Article 9. It didn't mention the SDF, self-defense or collective self-defense but according to the LDP twisting that judgement, it states

"The exercise of force prohibited in Article 9 of the Constitution does not include self-defense measures."

The introduction of the two security Bills are based on the LDP using the Supreme Court judgment, tweaking the judgement to suit its needs, to introduce a collective self defense.

This is a twisted logic and far-fetched argument by the LDP to promote its security Bills and the statement by PM Abe on June 22 meaningless since he had it appears, to have no real debate or allow the people to make a decision.

Ultimately, in the future, when all of the LDP's security Bills and policies are in place all the actions taken for the "collective self defense" will probably be covered by the new State Secrecy Law so the people won't know what is really happening.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Nigelboy, I'm not an international law expert so I won't even try to debate you on that. However, you're still debating the merits of the legislation itself, while conveniently overlooking that the constitution is being de facto amended without going through the process of constitutional amendment

No kidding. People, including those lawmakers should be discussing the merits and the demerits itself instead of calling constitutional scholars in the hearing only to present their narrow view when the ultimate decision on whether an act pursuant the said legislations' constitutionality can only be determined by the Supreme court

116 hours of deliberations and approved by the lower house. Now it's going to be deliberated again at the Upper house committe this week. The 'process' to which the bill is progressing is fine.

-11 ( +1 / -12 )

@M3M3M3

I'm opposed to collective self defense for various reasons as well, however as a history major I just can't help but point out that the politically active populous of the time, namely the Jiyuuminken-ha (what would equate to modern day human rights activists on the left) were very much FOR going to war. (During those days the Japanese right were pushing for isolationism, and the left was pushing for "liberation" of Asia) Yes the government did silence their critics, but its a very far stretch to say they were acting against the will of the people. Also, its questionable if they were acting above the law as well. Early 20th century laws in any country around the world were nothing like what we expect them to be like today.

As for the major slippery slope position you take on this law and the secrecy law, well they're just that. Fallacious.

Again, I'm ultimately on your side, but uninformed opinions like yours make us all look, well, uninformed.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Abe said the numbers were “tough” and likely a result of misunderstandings over the bills.

Hardly, they were more likely a result of you arrogantly "misunderstanding" the will of the people, and their unwillingness to accept your Cabinet's authority to "reinterpret" the Constitution to meet your agenda.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

In 1959, the Supreme Court judged that the presence of U.S. bases in the country did not run counter to the spirit of the Constitution’s war-renouncing Article 9. It didn't mention the SDF, self-defense or collective self-defense but according to the LDP twisting that judgement, it states

"The exercise of force prohibited in Article 9 of the Constitution does not include self-defense measures."

四 憲法第九条はわが国が主権国として有する固有の自衛権を何ら否定してはいない。

No twisting.

http://www.courts.go.jp/app/hanrei_jp/detail2?id=55816

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

kurumazakaJUL. 21, 2015 - 09:01AM JST

Just imagine that Obama has a sizable majority, "reinterprets" the govt understanding of the right to bear arms, and proceeds to ban all firearms other than bolt action single shot hunting rifles AGAINST majority public opinion while openly belonging to an organization whose stated goal is one world government.

As your example tacitly admits, Abe did not color outside the lines - he actually stayed within the arc of interpretations permissible by Article 9. He got the legislature on his side. At that point, as far as constitutionality is concerned, there is no problem.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

The deficiencies and weaknesses in interpretation within these bills are sure to herald a host of legal challenges, from opposing parties and constitutionalists, expect every method deployed to 'block and hold' this legislation in the upper house as the challenges are prepared.

Also anticipate increased public opposition, in the form of mass rallies and more demonstration. student and trade unions protests are planned this week, telltale cracks are beginning to appear in Abe san LDP support, never underestimate the levels of public hostility, Abe's LDP were elected to deliver on the economy, not to meddle with Japans pacifist constitution.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

He got the legislature on his side. At that point, as far as constitutionality is concerned, there is no problem.

Whaaaaaa? Non sequitur. Your conclusion doesn't follow from your premise.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Supreme Court Judgement Sunagawa Incident

The judgement does not mention "collective self defense"

Judgement 4. Does not in any way deny the inherent right of self-defense that Japan has as a sovereign country.

Judgement 5. Japan, that may take measures for self-defense necessary in order to fulfill maintain its existence and the peace and security of the country, shall apply in the exercise of state-specific mandate, the Constitution in any way to prohibit this not.

The main point of the Supreme Court judgement was that the presence of the U.S. military bases does not violate Article 9.

The fact is the LDP are claiming in order to have its security Bills passed that there is no difference between "self-defense" and "collective self-defense", that is twisiting the Supreme Court ruling.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

"...asserting that the legislation would decrease the risk of war rather than increase it."

Only in the world of someone who thinks the threat of war makes you strong, much like China, which Abe wants Japan to become, evidently -- he certainly doesn't listen to the will of the people. Japan now has, and this cannot be argued, an INCREASED chance of going to war, it is now selling arms to the highest bidder, and expanding its military spending when heaps of money is needed elsewhere to the point where they have to raise taxes and decrease food sizes every couple of years. NOWHERE does increasing the risk of war mean decreasing it, except in the mind of someone who is completely delusional.

zichi: "Comparing people you don't agree with to cock roaches also makes you less than human."

Exactly! but it wouldn't be the first time, by any means, that right-wingers in Japan refer to other groups as cock roaches.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

The judgement does not mention "collective self defense"

No. But it is "inherent right of self defense"

Where does the judge get that verbiage from?

"Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defence if an armed attack occurs.."

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

smithinjapan

Exactly! but it wouldn't be the first time, by any means, that right-wingers in Japan refer to other groups as cock roaches.

Sunday gone, I passed one of those black loudspeaker vans on the way to the harbor. A guy in military style uniform was saying something like that too. I stopped, which pleased him until I removed my dark sun glasses when he suddenly realised I was one of those cock roaches he was proclaiming. Gave an ear full and walked on.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

****The Citizens of Japan. 51.6% against this legislation is saying that the other 50% is saying "Yes". This is not a overwhelming majority vote. Half & Half! My parents gone through WW2. Both of them understood the importance of Japanese Government support in SEA Region. There are no other can or willing or capable to defence this region. US has their own agenda and their resources are restricted. Who is funding US economy? Anybody want to make a guess? So, Citizen of Japan, please think wisely , for our future generations , please support your Prime Minister Abe, before it's too late !

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Looks like some people here don't understand what a constitution is. Or are not prepared to say outright that they don't mind to see it trampled on for the sake of their "reality". Why not have the courage of your convictions? In most cases your underlying political predilections stand out anyway.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

nigelboyJul. 21, 2015 - 08:12AM JST

This security bill is nothing more than an increased deterrence.

Why?

Let me tell you. Abe wants to make Japan a full protectorate or sub-state of the US and thereby wants to increase "deterrence". As a proof of protectorate, Abe offers the lives of servicepersons of Japanese Self Defense Forces to the US. The bill says, Japan can send its defense forces wherever to protect its ally, ie the US, for nothing. This is not an equal alliance because the military power of the US far outnumbers that of Japan and that Japan has practically no option to terminate the US Japan Security Treaty. People would say Japan enjoys free lunch even after the bill were to be enacted.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

His somewhat bringing into reality what his Grand Dad was proposing before is such a big legacy. Enough of their so called revolving door policy. I hope he continued his good work for an extended period. I just hope his good work would rub off on me so I'd be financially stable too. And I don' t think Japan wants to be a US protectorate. Let's just accept the fact that the world is like a family with older siblings and other black sheep, with financially stable ones and struggling ones. I don't have any relatives in the US but I consider it a big brother whom I can run to whenever I'm in trouble. With the hidden agenda thing, I think everyone has. But if the good intention outnumber the bad ones, I still consider my brother good. And whom would you run to, China? All over the world. the Chinese have very good business acumen but no respect to nature and human lives. Some would argue that other world power countries are in the same boat too. But China supersedes everyone in the hunger for money and power!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@F4HA604

Yes the government did silence their critics, but its a very far stretch to say they were acting against the will of the people.

What evidence do you have that the average Japanese person had any desire to participate and send their children off to war? When we talk about the general will of the people, we are not usually interested in what a few political elites on either the left or right were advocating for.

Also, its questionable if they were acting above the law as well. Early 20th century laws in any country around the world were nothing like what we expect them to be like today.

I think you misunderstand what 'above the law' means. The Japanese government and the military were certainly above the law prior to 1945. They ruled by decree, they dictated what the law was, they were the law. By definition, you are above the law when the law cannot restrain you. This is why the postwar constitution clarifies that the Diet is the sole law making organ of the state. Above the law doesn't just mean breaking existing law with impunity.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Supreme Court Judgement Sunagawa Incident

The judgement does not mention "collective self defense"

The judgment noted that there is nothing in Article 9 which would deny the right of self-defense inherent in our nation as a sovereign power. It also clearly stated that it is only natural for our country, in the exercise of powers inherent in a state, to maintain peace and security, to take whatever measures may be necessary for self-defense, and to preserve its very existence.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Suga http://japan.kantei.go.jp/tyoukanpress/201404/1204639_9552.html

The Constitution of Japan does not refer explicitly to the right to self-defense or the right to collective self-defense.

But Article 9 clearly states "renouncing war." Self-defense is not a war action but the action of defending the country which every country in the world will do. "Collective self-defense" is the action of going to war or making war even if the country isn't directly attacked and therefore goes against the Article 9. That was supported by the judgement of the Supreme Court.

Article 98 of the Constitution stipulates that no law running counter to constitutional provisions is valid. The government's logic behind the bills based on its reinterpretation of the Constitution is putting the cart before the horse. http://sp.mainichi.jp/english/english/perspectives/news/20150609p2a00m0na007000c.html

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Abe said the numbers were “tough” and likely a result of misunderstandings over the bills.

If there was one trope I could remove from Japanese political discourse, it would be this one. Far, far too often politicians blame the public for not understanding their position istead of 1) identifying and correcting what specifically is misunderstood or 2) admitting that the public disagrees with them because they don't like the politician's idea. It's a mind-boggling display of arrogance to just blithely assume that the public doesn't understand you because they're too dumb to get it.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Kazuaki Shimazaki, seriously? He got the legislature on his side so no problem? The LDP got 48% of the 52% who bothered to vote in a snap election with no opposition (admittedly not the LDP's fault about the lack of viable opposition. Personally, I thank Hatoyama for where things are now.) Meaning the LDP got somewhere around 20% of actual eligible voters. With that "mandate," they have the right to de-facto amend the constitution because they are the majority party and their PM, amazingly, "got them on board?" What's the purpose of even having a constitution if it can be sidestepped that easily? Who needs a constitution when you can have simple majority party rule?...wow, thanks for sharing the majority party's position...you know, once the precedent is set, it doesn't have to stop with Article 9...I second Moonraker's statement above. Apologies for the smarmy tone, but that is what you just said...

1 ( +2 / -1 )

nigelboy JUL. 21, 2015 - 12:38PM JST No. But it is "inherent right of self defense" Where does the judge get that verbiage from?"Nothing in the present Charter shall impair the inherent right of individual or collective self-defense if an armed attack occurs.."

Typical of Japanese left wing response. U.S Presidents will appoint Supreme Court justices whose constitutional views are consistent with their own political philosophy. By Abe's contrast, Japan’s Supreme Court is the perfect place to send jurists whose opinions on the nation’s most important law are politically inconvenient.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

“... asserting that the legislation would decrease the risk of war rather than increase it.

Confirmation that he is insane.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

sf2k,

Confirmation that he is insane.

Sad but true.

He is also operating under the delusion that he is the "leader" of Japan. His job is to represent the Japanese people, not to dictate to it.

Abe is out of touch with reality = insane.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

For a long time this country bought peace with currency. Pay yen and just be an island. Just keep the outsiders out and peace will be assured.

Housewifes even imaged to apply for a nobel peace prize for this island model.

But then times change and hopefully, eventually someone will see that naivity is dangerous. And change there must be.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Bertie,

You are all wrong on this. This is a US led initiative.

Abe is only the postman delivering the goods for which he will be rewarded. All those propaganda trolls who are fixating on Abe have got it wrong, and are missing the target.

@M3M3M3

Wrong again. The blame lies with the army. The government were dragged into it.

Anyone believing we are in the 1930s and it is WWII all over again is drinking a bad batch of Kool AId.

Let Japan get on its way to full sovereignty.

It's proven more than any other nation it is lawful, responsible and tends by nature toward pacifism.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

A full downloadable document detailing the new guidelines for bilateral defense cooperation is available at Asia Maritime Transparency Initiative, it is a important document worth taking time out to read follow new guidelines link Abe and President Obama endorsed new guidelines for bilateral defense cooperation and released a joint vision statement for the U.S.-Japan alliance.

http://amti.csis.org/amti-issue-14/

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@ Kazuaki Shimazaki JUL. 21, 2015 - 12:22PM JST

As your example tacitly admits, Abe did not color outside the lines - he actually stayed within the arc of interpretations permissible by Article 9. He got the legislature on his side. At that point, as far as constitutionality is concerned, there is no problem.

So I suppose you are the divine constitutional scholar with absolutely supreme knowledge of the constitution the LDP must be desperately looking for these days...

Sorry for the irony, but just by saying "my view is true" your view doesn't become true. But the way you say x-is-y (and-history-will-prove-that-I'm-true) comes across convincingly Abe-like.

Be assured though, the only quality one really needs to understand that Abe's legislation is violating the constitution is common sense and luckily the majority of Japanese seem to possess a healthy portion of that.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

But Article 9 clearly states "renouncing war." Self-defense is not a war action but the action of defending the country which every country in the world will do. "Collective self-defense" is the action of going to war or making war even if the country isn't directly attacked and therefore goes against the Article 9. That was supported by the judgement of the Supreme Court.

Your analysis makes no sense.

Self defense can be individual or collective. It's also why it's stated in an U.N. Charter as both being a inherent right.

If anything, I would tend to agree with the constitutional scholars that was surveyed by Asahi that even the existence of SDF, which is essentially right to exercise individual self defense would be unconstitutional based on strict interpretation of the constitution.

As to Mainichi lame editorial in touching Article 98, we went over this. The said article also states,

"The treaties concluded by Japan and established laws of nations shall be faithfully observed."

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

There's a clear difference between self-defense and collective self-defense but since you appear to support the current Abe security policies, and just like Abe you consider them the same even when constitutional scholars and others don't.

"The treaties concluded by Japan and established laws of nations shall be faithfully observed."

provided they don't violate the Constitution which is the supreme law of the land.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

There's a clear difference between self-defense and collective self-defense but since you appear to support the current Abe security policies, and just like Abe you consider them the same even when constitutional scholars and others don't.

There is a difference. Who's denying this?

provided they don't violate the Constitution which is the supreme law of the land.

And the only authority that makes such determination is the Supreme Court. I stated this already.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

Since the introduction of the constitution in 1949, there have been something like 24 governments and prime ministers but Abe is the first to reinterpret it stating that it allows for both collective self-defense as well as self-defense.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

Article 9

MacArthur himself confirmed Shidehara's authorship on several occasions. However, according to some interpretations, he denied having done so, and the inclusion of Article 9 was mainly brought about by the members of Government Section of Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers (GHQ), especially Charles Kades, one of Douglas MacArthur's closest associates. The article was endorsed by the Diet of Japan on November 3, 1946. Kades rejected the proposed language that prohibited Japan's use of force " for its own security," believing that self-preservation was the right of every nation.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Since the introduction of the constitution in 1949, there have been something like 24 governments and prime ministers but Abe is the first to reinterpret it stating that it allows for both collective self-defense as well as self-defense.

That's kind of puttin it too simply.

Prior governments have been 'reinterpreting' for decades which resulted in the establishement of JSDF, 1960 Security Agreements, and the PKO laws. What Abe is essentially doing is going through a natural progression where limited collective self defense will be incorporated into the current law.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

JandworldJUL. 21, 2015 - 06:38PM JST For a long time this country bought peace with currency. Pay yen and just be an island. Just keep the outsiders out and peace will be assured.

Housewifes even imaged to apply for a nobel peace prize for this island model.

But then times change and hopefully, eventually someone will see that naivity is dangerous. And change there must be.

Sad but very true how naive some people are. That type of thinking is exactly how you will get yourself into trouble. Better be safe than sorry. Would coulda shoulda won't save you when an attack or catastrophe happens.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@nigelboy

But do you at least admit that there is a possibility that the Supreme Court will eventually decide that Abe's reinterpretation is entirely misconceived and collective self defence is in fact unconstitutional?

As Zichi points out, countless governments (and lawyers, law professors, etc) have interpreted the Constitution as excluding collective self defence. You really need to provide a convincing argument as to why that interpretation of the Diet's will is completely incorrect. Saying that Diet members in 1947 intended the Constitution to be read in accordance with Art.51 of the UN Charter is a non-starter when you realise that Japan was not a signatory until 1956.

The luxury that your side have in this argument is that nobody has standing to challenge the legality of Abe's reinterpretation unless the government acts on it... which I'm sure he is pretty afraid to do at this point since it could all come crashing down like a house of cards.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It doesn't help that Japan’s opposition parties are weak, divided and mostly incompetent. Obviously, if Abe want to create an intolerant state, some in the LDP may already regard its draft constitution as the “true” law of the land. The real danger in this new constitution may be part of a wider LDP effort to crack down on civil society, which has become more disruptive because of the economic situation in Japan. The change in Article 9 would open the door for the authoritarian obligations and the weakening of human rights.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

But do you at least admit that there is a possibility that the Supreme Court will eventually decide that Abe's reinterpretation is entirely misconceived and collective self defence is in fact unconstitutional?

Yes. But the precedence has been set in Sunagawa case basically stated Article 9 does not in any way deny the inherent right of self-defense that Japan has as a sovereign country and that they may take measures for self-defense necessary in order to fulfill and continually maintain its existence and the peace and security.

What Zichi pointed out was these so-called expert scholars survey conducted by Asahi that revealed the current security bill to be unconstitutional or possibly unconsittutional. What's left out and subsequently erased by Asahi is that in the same poll, the 3/4 of those scholars also stated that the current existence of self defense is unconstitutional or possibly unconstittuional.

Saying that Diet members in 1947 intended the Constitution to be read in accordance with Art.51 of the UN Charter is a non-starter when you realise that Japan was not a signatory until 1956.

It doesn't matter what the time frame is when treaties are considered. It's how treaties are considered in the hierarchy in Japanese judicial system. Again, this is debateable and case by case scenario.

All I'm saying is that this isn't the first time in Japan's post war history that such controversies surrounding the 'defense' issue and it's constitutionality. Many of these were 'unpopular' among the public at that time but cabinets went ahead despite such voices. And as history shows, they were right.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

As of June 12, 225 constitutional scholars had signed a public declaration condemning the bills as unconstitutional.1 The list includes faculty members from every respected Japanese university. But never mind. Prime Minister Abe and his friends in Washington claim to know better.

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@nigelboy

Yes. But the precedence has been set in Sunagawa case basically stated Article 9 does not in any way deny the inherent right of self-defense

I agree, but again, the question is whether self defence and collective self defence are the same thing. You say yes, I say no. It looks like we have to wait for the court to clarify this because if the Constitution forbids it, it doesn't matter what treaties Japan has signed or what inherent powers are recognised in international law, its not allowed. I don't actually have a strong opinion about collective self defence one way or the other, I just don't want Abe to drag Japan into lawlessness.

It doesn't matter what the time frame is when treaties are considered. It's how treaties are considered in the hierarchy in Japanese judicial system.

If the Supreme Court ever hears this case, they will apply a few basic rules of statutory interpretation, the first will be to decide what the Diet members in 1947 intended the words in the Constitution to mean. The fact that the Charter was signed in 1956 will absolutely matter, because it will prevent you from running the argument that it was the intention of the 1947 Diet that the Constitution must be interpreted to be consistent with a treaty that didn't exist yet.

Of course, you can argue that the position in the Charter is preferable to a ban on collective self defence, but this will just be your subjective opinion rather than a legal argument as to what the intention of the Diet was.

Many of these were 'unpopular' among the public at that time but cabinets went ahead despite such voices. And as history shows, they were right.

Some might say that it just shows the courts in the past have be too conservative and deferential to the government. But that may change in the future. I think we just have to wait and see.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Abe has appointed a panel stacked with people who agree with him. They made recommendations supporting Abe’s plans to unleash the SDF. So Abe got the endorsement of everyone who already agreed with him. But the Japanese public isn’t buying this farce and strongly opposes his reinterpretation. And there is also a problem by the lack of public discussion, and his desire to say conflicting things. Abe should be more clear. But isn’t that how democracy is supposed to work? Maybe not in Japan. Abe does things in a undemocratic ways, and pile of unfulfilled pledges and promises. This will never happen in U.S.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I agree, but again, the question is whether self defence and collective self defence are the same thing. You say yes, I say no. It looks like we have to wait for the court to clarify this because if the Constitution forbids it, it doesn't matter what treaties Japan has signed or what inherent powers are recognised in international law, its not allowed. I don't actually have a strong opinion about collective self defence one way or the other, I just don't want Abe to drag Japan into lawlessness.

I think you are confused. There are two types of self defense which is individual and collective. The court decision simply stated 'self defense' and therefore did not specify which. If the court interpreted that the right of self defense is inherent and concludes that it does not violate, there is no reason to believe that it can include the proposed collective self defense as well.

One thing that's not covered is that the main opposition parties, mainly DPJ and Isshin, are not against the concept of collective self defense with the latter submitting their own bill while the former had stare that they are ready to submit anytime. Since the bill is now submitted to the Upper House, there are disagreements among DPJ members whether to team up with the Communist Party/Social Party to defeat the bill. The reason for the inner disagreement is that JCP and SDP position is that the current existence of JSDF is unconstitutional.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

@nigelboy

There are two types of self defense which is individual and collective. The court decision simply stated 'self defense' and therefore did not specify which.

Yes, I understand. That's what I mean when I ask whether (ordinary) self defence and collective self defence are the same thing. You summed it up perfectly. (but I assume you meant to say can't where you wrote can in the last sentence first paragraph?)

One thing that's not covered is that the main opposition parties, mainly DPJ and Isshin, are not against the concept of collective self defense

Yes, and actually I think a lot of people who oppose Abe would not be against some form of collective self defence if there had been a proper public debate on the issue with a number of possible options on the table and once a consensus had been reached, something this important should have been passed in a constitutional amendment (whether it was necessary or not) so that the legitimacy of government actions would not be called into question. If people think there is a constitutional crisis now, just imagine what it will be like when the government deploys troops to fight in a war that more than half of people believe is illegal. I think Abe is quickly pushing through this agenda for his own personal satisfaction rather than acting in the best long term interest of Japan.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There's a very important difference between "self-defense" and "collective self-defense." Self-defense is support by all of the nation but the reinterpretation of the Constitution for collective self-defense is opposed by the majority of the nation and in June, PM Abe stated, the people will decide?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

In the Yahoo Japan Poll, the percentage FOR the bill reached 50%, while AGAINST the bill is 47.2% as of today. Some days ago, the AGAINST was the majority.

http://polls.dailynews.yahoo.co.jp/domestic/17822/result

Seems to me very rational. This is a different trend from what is said by the mass media though.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

This is a different trend from what is said by the mass media though.

That poll says people giving their opinions are 80% males, 20% females. Males on the whole tend to be more bellicose than females. A more evenly-balanced poll would probably give a different result, more in line with what we are hearing around us and what the mass media are reporting.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@cleo, your comment does not make sense, because the FOR was 30%, and AGAINST was 60% in the beginning with almost the same male/female ratio.

It is more natural to think that people with more information over the course of time tend to cast a vote FOR the bill. I want to see other polls later anyway.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

@StrangerlandJUL. 21, 2015 - 12:28PM JST

Whaaaaaa? Non sequitur. Your conclusion doesn't follow from your premise.

I said there were two conditions. Abe colored within the constitutional lines and the legislature passed his bill. At that point, there is no problem from a constitutional point of view. Where's the non-sequitur?

@zichiJUL. 21, 2015 - 12:28PM JST

The judgement does not mention "collective self defense"

It just mentions self defense. From a purely grammatical structure point of view, "collective" and "individual" self defense are subcategories of "self defence". Thus, the day when the court says Self Defense is permitted, to insist they had excluded collective self defense is to twist the court's words to your own needs.

But Article 9 clearly states "renouncing war." Self-defense is not a war action

If you take the interpretation that self defense is not a war action (you have to do this to sustain the present state), there is no particular reason to favor an interpretation that a subcategory of self-defense is a war action.

"The treaties concluded by Japan and established laws of nations shall be faithfully observed." provided they don't violate the Constitution which is the supreme law of the land.

This means, where there are multiple interpretations of a particular article, the version that's compatible with the "treaties concluded ..." must be favored - and that would mean an interpretation allowing collective self-defence. Only when there are no versions that comply do we start getting into the "Which is bigger" fight.

@kurumazakaJUL. 21, 2015 - 02:37PM JST By your logic, this Diet cannot pass any laws, because not enough people turned up.

Besides, to say that they don't have a mandate on this ground is to assume if only those 48% other people could be bothered to get to the booth, they won't have voted LDP. There is no particular reason to believe that's the case. More likely, they would have voted roughly in the same proportion as those who did vote.

@bam_booJUL. 21, 2015 - 10:38PM JST I clearly do not share your "common" sense. Thus, please, using the actual text of the Constitution, substantiate allowing individual but denying collective self defence as a particularly attractive option. You may borrow the explanation from your favorite constitutional expert, but you must explain it in your own words.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

@Kazuaki Shimazak

From a purely grammatical structure point of view, "collective" and "individual" self defense are subcategories of "self defence". Thus, the day when the court says Self Defense is permitted, to insist they had excluded collective self defense is to twist the court's words to your own needs.

From reading up on "self-defense" and "collective self-defense" they are not the same. This is mostly the view taken by about 26 governments/cabinets and prime ministers since the Constitution. I'm not twisting anything for my needs.

Also hundreds of constitutional scholars and more than 10,000 academics also disagree over collective self-defense.

The Supreme Court judgement on the Sunagawa Incident made no mention of collective self-defense. It judged that the presence of the U.S. military bases didn't violate Article 9. But now the PM Abe and his government are twisting that judgement in saying it includes collective self-defense.

Personally, I don't think the security Bills are needed nor any change to Article 9 or how the SDF works to protect the country. For 70 years there has been peace and that's what is important.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

zichiJUL. 22, 2015 - 05:45PM JST

From reading up on "self-defense" and "collective self-defense" they are not the same. This is mostly the view taken by about 26 governments/cabinets and prime ministers since the Constitution. I'm not twisting anything for my needs.

How familiar are you with the spaghetti, house-of-cards solution these twenty-six governments use to justify individual self defence while banning collective self-defence? The details probably shifted a bit over the years, but the basics go something like this:

1) A mix of the preamble (right to live peacefully), Article 13 and (I think) Article 25 in the Constitution are used to argue that reading in context, Article 9 cannot mean the complete ban on all military (and equivalent) forces. At that point, most (~75% as of the last survey) constitutional scholars left the party, but it is at least a defensible argument.

2) As a sop to all the pacifists, something called the 3 Conditions (3-youken) was created, one of which says the "minimum force". There is also the choice of what is meant by "senryoku", which does not include the "minimum necessary" force needed for self-defence. However, there is no particular reason to pick that as the definition. For example, going by its English translation, war potential, we can say it only covers those abilities necessarily for the independent prosecution of a successful war (a far higher line than "minimum necessary force for self-defence").

In fact, if we are going to use the Preamble et al, the last thing you want is the minimum necessary force, because if you are actually aiming for this and guess wrong by a fraction of a percent, you will simply lose. If you guess perfectly you will be winning by the tiniest margin. Either way guarantees the maximum length of a war, with maximum pain, maximum casualties ... hardly the ideals of the preamble or Article 13.

If we are going to say we are going to allow self defence due to Preamble et al, we might as well have a nice robust defence that 1) hopefully deters the enemy preventing all the pain to begin with or 2) flattens his invading force with utmost speed - ideally, the Japanese citizenry barely even realize they've been attacked, thus fulfilling the preamble, Article 13 and Article 25. Did that make sense to you?

3) The ban on collective self defense is tied to this minimal necessary force interpretation of the Constitution. As can be seen, it is not tied to the Constitution itself, since that is impossible, and it is tied to a particularly crappy interpretation.

I don't understand why anyone, constitutional scholar or not, can support this.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@ Kazuaki Shimazaki JUL. 22, 2015 - 04:46PM JST

Thus, please, using the actual text of the Constitution, substantiate allowing individual but denying collective self defence as a particularly attractive option.

We all know what is "self-defense", but what exactly does "collective self-defense" mean? I would appreciate if you could give us a clear and concise definition so we know what we're talking about. Then we can also talk about its constitutionality.

While "collective self-defense" is mentioned in some UN charter I haven't seen one reliable dictionary definition of the term. Maybe it was coined by diplomats during the cold war era to justify proxy wars, but that's just guessing.

I believe Abe's use of the term "collective self-defense" is nothing more then a smoke screen. Judging from his past statements we can guess that Abe want's people to get used to having Japanese soldiers engaged in warfare once again in order to promote his main mission: to resurrect a "beautiful" Japan.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@Kazuaki Shimazaki

So you have decided to ignore the constitutional scholars, law experts and other academics?

If self-defense and collective self-defense are the same and don't violate the constitution, then why is there a need to change, with the introduction of Abe's security Bills?

Professor Hasebe Yasuo, a scholar of constitutional law now at Waseda Law School, on June 4, testified before a Commission of the Lower House Diet about the security Bills, and argued that it was unconstitutional.

http://www.iconnectblog.com/2015/06/hasebe-yasuo-interview-with-the-kochi-shimbun/

The LDP is not happy with how the press has reported the criticism of the bills. At a June 25 “study meeting” held at party headquarters, four members made remarks blaming the media for weak public support for the national-security legislation. One suggested, “We should punish the media by putting pressure on their advertisers. Cut off their funds.” There were also suggestions that two newspapers opposing the military bases in Okinawa should be “crushed and put out of business.”

http://www.globalresearch.ca/japan-protest-movement-against-growing-militarism-are-these-the-last-days-of-japans-prime-minister-abe/5463017

1 ( +5 / -4 )

bam_boo,

I have the same question.

What on Earth does "collective SELF-defense" mean?

A collection of "SELFs?"

Coming to the aid of an ally is very noble and it might be defence but it's hardly SELF-defence, is it?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Coming to the aid of an ally is very noble and it might be defence but it's hardly SELF-defence, is it?

@Bertie. That's just political jargon. Perhaps Japan-US should call it something different. China, established with their harbors and landing strips in the S China Sea, are now poking around in the East China Sea. Japan really needs to start looking for solutions for it's own security. Call it whatever you'd like.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

M3M3M3

Yes, I understand. That's what I mean when I ask whether (ordinary) self defence and collective self defence are the same thing. You summed it up perfectly. (but I assume you meant to say can't where you wrote can in the last sentence first paragraph?)

Yes. I meant 'can't".

But I do not understand why you place 'ordinary' with parenthesis for in this day and age, a combination of individual self defense and collective self defense (Bilateral Security Agreements, ANZUS, NATO) is best described as 'ordinary'.

And another thing that Kazuaki Shimazaki touched to is duty of the government to protect Article 13 and Article 25. The proposed security bill is not a full blown 'collective' self defense we are accustomed to but Abe cabinet carefully worded that they will act in aid of the ally if there is an immediate danger to jeorpadizing "right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" of the Japanese citizens.

"我が国と密接な関係にある他国に対する武力 攻撃が発生し、これにより我が国の存立が脅か され、国民の生命、自由及び幸福追求の.権利が 根底から覆される明白な危険があること"

So no. I still don't see how this added security bill will be ruled unconstitutional by the Supreme Court given the fact that the precedent had already ruled on the 'right of self defense'.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

@bam_booJUL. 22, 2015 - 07:59PM JST

We all know what is "self-defense", but what exactly does "collective self-defense" mean?

At least, it is a terminology that Abe cannot be blamed for, being invented by the Allies way before Japan joined (as everyone so eagerly points out) the United Nations. It apparently was proposed by Latin American countries as a permissive clause to counter Article 53 concerning the Security Council.

However, it is also true that countries do not live in isolation with each other, especially those close enough to form alliances (collectives). Though you yourself are not being punched (yet?), in a collective security arrangement, you are counting on your ally's military force to aid you if you get punched. Thus, him getting punched also affects you in a crucial way, and that creates the condition to call it self-defense.

Now, can you answer my question?

@zichiJUL. 22, 2015 - 08:02PM JST

So you have decided to ignore the constitutional scholars, law experts and other academics?

After seeing what they had to say, so far I have to say they are not wearing clothes.

If self-defense and collective self-defense are the same and don't violate the constitution, then why is there a need to change, with the introduction of Abe's security Bills?

Because there is still a need to revise the Executive Decision (which is all the Three Conditions and all the governmental interpretations really are ... executive decisions, which is inferior to a law) and they still need to pass new laws because the constitution is only outlines.

Professor Hasebe Yasuo, a scholar of constitutional law now at Waseda Law School, on June 4, testified before a Commission of the Lower House Diet about the security Bills, and argued that it was unconstitutional.

I'm reading it. He is not really saying anything new. He starts off with his problems with the integral (ittaika) crap - I actually agree with him. But the fault with this one is not with Abe. It is the kind of BS that is made up because governments of the past aren't willing to make the leap and burn the political points. Abe is, and in a world where collective self defense is permitted, ittaika-theory is OK as a certain brake on what actions are permitted - he's not using the full boundaries of the collective self defense right, at least not yet, and that's OK.

He then moves to his constitutional read, and it is even more messed up than the government's. He starts with "According to Article 9 of the Constitution, Japan should in principle exercise no military force whatsoever." Here's the problem. This makes sense but if you take that interpretation, then you have to eat it. A vague statement in other articles cannot override an absolute position like this. Only if you accept that other interpretations do exist can you use other articles to determine which one you should take.

He then kind of jumps to the old government's position, with all the problems that I have stated in my previous thread. It is probably also an exaggerated to imply no debate has occurred with collective self-defense before now. The guy's then taken off to things entirely outside his expertise area, before musing about how the constitution's pacifism clauses should not be changeable, in a gross attack on popular sovereignty :-)

In the next section, he mumbles stretching individual self defence to cover defending a US ship defending Japan. But the attack wasn't on Japan, so to stretch individual self defence to cover it just so you don't have to call it collective self defence makes you ... well, worse than Abe really.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

This is not coincidence.

What BIG ACTION are they trying to set in place without telling us about it?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan demands China halt oil exploration in part of East China Sea

@Bertie. do you need an invitation into this forum? Just, click-click-click - boom you're there. What say you pal?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@ Kazuaki Shimazaki JUL. 23, 2015 - 12:58AM JST

Now, can you answer my question?

Sorry, but you haven't provided anything close to a clear and concise definition. Your vague and overly general description provides us with absolutely no concrete concept of collective self-defense.

It was precisely such an absence of clear and reasonable definitions during the proceedings of parliament that has cast Abe in a disastrously bad light.

That Abe keeps spinning weird scenarios like the one of Japanese citizens being rescued on US military ships that get under attack, but only Japanese military can help, just deepens the distrust of the people.

While self-defense is a clear concept, collective self-defense is neither on wikipedia nor on the Encyclopaedia Brittanica and I suppose it was introduced in the UN charter precisely to leave room for all kinds of interpretations.

@ nigelboy JUL. 23, 2015 - 12:53AM JST

The proposed security bill is not a full blown 'collective' self defense we are accustomed to but Abe cabinet carefully worded that they will act in aid of the ally if there is an immediate danger to jeorpadizing "right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" of the Japanese citizens.

If there's an immediate danger for Japan just call it "self-defense" and we're all on board.

Reading the ardent sophistry of "collective self-defense" proponents here we can easily understand why common sense tells us there is something wrong with Abe's "collective self-defense".

From the beginning the whole security legislation was such a blatant attempt to deceive people that one can only be astonished by the impertinence. Being the result of Abe's failed attempt to revise the constitution it is more then obvious what the legislation aims at and to believe people will buy such a constitutional revision via the backdoor was naiv.

The way Abe completely ignores the concerns and objections of the people clarifies that the "careful wording" of the legislation was only meant to deceive people and not to put restrictions on his power.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Reading the ardent sophistry of "collective self-defense" proponents here we can easily understand why common sense tells us there is something wrong with Abe's "collective self-defense".

Actually, I tend to believe that you haven't read the security bill and the explanation put forth in the cabinet report that was issued last year.

From the beginning the whole security legislation was such a blatant attempt to deceive people that one can only be astonished by the impertinence. Being the result of Abe's failed attempt to revise the constitution it is more then obvious what the legislation aims at and to believe people will buy such a constitutional revision via the backdoor was naiv.

If deception means Abe had planned that most citizens are just too lazy to read the contents of the report I mentioned earlier, then I would tend to agree. But then again, if that was a case, he wouldn't go about explaining it on TV (with pictures that a person with basic educational background would understand) just this past Monday so there goes that theory.

The only deception I see are the left wing media and the people like yourself who blindly follow such nonsense of this alleged 'alterior' motives of Abe.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Abe’s Coup in Seven Simple Steps

http://shingetsunewsagency.com/tokyo/?p=1450

3 ( +6 / -3 )

zichi,

Great article you linked there.

Everything about Abe's "cunning plan" in a nutshell.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Abe’s Coup in Seven Simple Steps

I stopped reading at number one for it was the DPJ candidate that won on four of the top five voting disparity districts.(aka ruuuuurrrallll)

The writer's not too bright but that's common with these western 'journalists' who try to write about Japan.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

@kurumazakaJUL. 21, 2015 - 02:37PM JST By your logic, this Diet cannot pass any laws, because not enough people turned up.

Straw man argument. This is not a about the passage of a normal law, and you know it.

Besides, to say that they don't have a mandate on this ground is to assume if only those 48% other people could be bothered to get to the booth, they won't have voted LDP. There is no particular reason to believe that's the case. More likely, they would have voted roughly in the same proportion as those who did vote.

You're right. Every last one of the 48% who stayed home could possibly be LDP supporters. But, they stayed home, so we don't know that. What we do know is that the LDP got somewhere around 20%, therefore no mandate to de-facto amend a constitution that requires a 2/3 majority. While it is quite clear that you are very well versed on this whole issue, you simply cannot obfuscate that simple fact away.

Nigelboy, "ulterior motives nonsense?" Yeah...nothing to see here. Move on, folks.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Attack being the surest form of defence I am sure the sophists in this forum could make the case that in fact Article 9 allows for pre-emptive attack on mere suspicion of danger as being self-defence.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@ nigelboy JUL. 23, 2015 - 02:59AM JST

Actually, I tend to believe that you haven't read the security bill and the explanation put forth in the cabinet report that was issued last year.

I have read the security bill and that's why I'm against it. There are no compelling reasons put force in the bill that would justify such a drastic policy change like the one proposed.

Even when explaining the bill it becomes clear that a revision of the constitution was the main aim of the measures and just because that was not possible the constitution needs to be bended (to put it carefully).

While a "changed security environment" is ubiquitously mentioned there is not even an attempt to analyze,

... what exactly has changed

... and why there is an urgency to act in a hurry right now.

Of course the island dispute is hinted at as the main threat scenario, but of course that is not analyzed or further explained because it is perfectly covered by existing security legislation.

Surely the bill is about deterrence and that is exactly why people question it. The deterrence Abe is talking about is clearly a step towards the "threat by force" that the constitution doesn't allow for.

Abe had plenty of opportunities to explain his bill and contrary to what some posters here want to make us believe citizens were closely listening, but his arguments have been anything but convincing.

The more Abe explains the worse things get.

If deception means Abe had planned that most citizens are just too lazy to read the contents of the report I mentioned earlier, then I would tend to agree.

The same kind of arrogance towards the people that made Abe's popularity drop so drastically in such a short time.

Talking about arrogance there is an entertaining animation video by the LDP explaining the security legislation to "lazy citizens" on Youtube:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0YzSHNlSs9g

Unfortunately the citizens have't been lazy enough to just swallow the shallow reasoning in the video and there is an even more entertaining parody now that gets more views then the original:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L9WjGyo9AU8

The way the LDP communicates its policies speaks volumes about how they view the citizens: as "uninformed female minors" without the ability to enter into a decent discourse who need to be "instructed" by elder men. (of course only communists and diehard left-wingers scent the typical LDP Oyaji-sexism here)

The only deception I see are the left wing media and the people like yourself who blindly follow such nonsense of this alleged 'alterior' motives of Abe.

Listen, we don't even need any left-wing media (btw who exactly are you referring to? Asahi? Mainichi? Japan Times?) but just look at Abe, carefully listen to what he has to say and then we make up our minds.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I have read the security bill and that's why I'm against it. There are no compelling reasons put force in the bill that would justify such a drastic policy change like the one proposed.

I seriously doubt for your previous posts relating to these type of threads doesn't even touch it. C'mon now.

Even when explaining the bill it becomes clear that a revision of the constitution was the main aim of the measures and just because that was not possible the constitution needs to be bended (to put it carefully).

And?? Instead of amending the constitution to allow full fledge collective self defense, the cabinet chose the lite version without amending the constitution. So what? Is amending the constitution some sort of taboo in a global sense?.

Surely the bill is about deterrence and that is exactly why people question it. The deterrence Abe is talking about is clearly a step towards the "threat by force" that the constitution doesn't allow for.

And you stated that you read the bill? How do you come up with this nonsense that even the Japanese left wing nuts wouldn't even use?

Abe had plenty of opportunities to explain his bill and contrary to what some posters here want to make us believe citizens were closely listening, but his arguments have been anything but convincing.

Actually, he did a pretty good job if you watched the deliberations. It's just unfortunate that the issue of constitutionality became a central issue considering that these scholars also believe that the current SDF is unconstitutional.

The same kind of arrogance towards the people that made Abe's popularity drop so drastically in such a short time.

It's not arrogance. It's what was initiated last year and was stated in the manifesto in the last election.

Unfortunately the citizens have't been lazy enough to just swallow the shallow reasoning in the video and there is an even more entertaining parody now that gets more views then the original:

I don't know how anyone could compare cold war data and proclaim everything is ok when it's the reinterpretation of the prior governments during the cold war era that made the current status quo which many (including the animated girl on the video) arrogantly take it for a given.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Instead of amending the constitution to allow full fledge collective self defense, the cabinet chose the lite version without amending the constitution.

You call it "without amending", though most people clearly perceive the bill as violating the constitution. And you and Abe may not like the idea, but it is the people who are (or better should be) the supreme authority in regard to the constitution.

And to keep on claiming that people are not well informed (or misinformed by "left-wing media") is pure arrogance and just shows that your reasoning does not reason enough.

So what? Is amending the constitution some sort of taboo in a global sense?

No, clearly not. As I have stated before it just a question of how and to what end.

The problem here is that LDP arguments for revising the constitution have not been convincing and Abe's stance is not credible in the eyes of a majority of citizens. Be a credible leader, provide convincing arguments, go through the due process and revising the constitution surely can be done.

Abe has not done much to hide his aggressive backward-looking nationalist agenda and that's what people don't like in relation to security legislation. They voted him because they hoped he could fix the economy with bold measures, but apparently the people believe that his resurrecting Japan vision in relation to any kind of military action can be really dangerous for the country.

And you stated that you read the bill? How do you come up with this nonsense that even the Japanese left wing nuts wouldn't even use?

Is that an attempt to reason? Being insulting seems to be one of your main lines of argument.

Anyway, to stick with the content of our discourse, please give us your kind definition of how exactly Abe's deterrence without "threat of force" works here. Maybe you can provide us with a completely new perspective for how to realize global peace "with armed forces, but without threat of force".

1 ( +3 / -2 )

You call it "without amending", though most people clearly perceive the bill as violating the constitution. And you and Abe may not like the idea, but it is the people who are (or better should be) the supreme authority in regard to the constitution.

No. It's the Supreme Court that has the ultimate decision.

And to keep on claiming that people are not well informed (or misinformed by "left-wing media") is pure arrogance and just shows that your reasoning does not reason enough.

It's perhaps because you scream 'unconstitutional' without offering why you think so.

The problem here is that LDP arguments for revising the constitution have not been convincing and Abe's stance is not credible in the eyes of a majority of citizens. Be a credible leader, provide convincing arguments, go through the due process and revising the constitution surely can be done.

Sure. But people are content on the status quo and are completely oblivious to how this status was achieved in the first place. To move people into such direction cannot be achieved through 'convincing arguments' but are achieved as a result of actual misfortune.

Abe has not done much to hide his aggressive backward-looking nationalist agenda and that's what people don't like in relation to security legislation. They voted him because they hoped he could fix the economy with bold measures, but apparently the people believe that his resurrecting Japan vision in relation to any kind of military action can be really dangerous for the country.

I'm now convinced that you have not read the security bill.

Anyway, to stick with the content of our discourse, please give us your kind definition of how exactly Abe's deterrence without "threat of force" works here. Maybe you can provide us with a completely new perspective for how to realize global peace "with armed forces, but without threat of force".

Why is aiding an ally, who is defending near Japan, considered a threat of force??

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

No. It's the Supreme Court that has the ultimate decision.

I believe your understanding of the supreme courts role is not accurate. While the supreme court is the highest institution to interpret the constitution, it is not able to make or revise it. The constitution is a document that has to reflect the will of the people and in a democracy the people have the ultimate say on the constitution. That is why there is a compulsory referendum and the supermajority rule for any change.

It's perhaps because you scream 'unconstitutional' without offering why you think so.

I think so for the following simple reasons:

Because it would allow the SDF to engage in various kinds of warfare that are only vaguely defined by the artificial term "collective self-defense", and in case that there is no direct attack on Japan and its people, which would require some form of self-defense to survive, this would amount to "... the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes", which is clearly prohibited in article 9.

Because the majority of Japanese citizens believe that the current proposed legislation is unconstitutional and it is the constitution of the Japanese people, not Abe's or the LDP's constitution.

Because almost all experts and scholars share the above view of the unconstitutionality of the legislation.

But people are content on the status quo and are completely oblivious to how this status was achieved in the first place.

Opinions on how the current peaceful status was achieved vary largely.

Your interpretation is that it was achieved also due to the "powerful" deterrent force of the SDF (yes, you can rightly sense the sarcasm).

My interpretation, and that of a majority of the Japanese people, is that it was achieved at least partly due to the existence of and by large also adherence to article 9.

Why is aiding an ally, who is defending near Japan, considered a threat of force??

I wonder if you have thoroughly read the legislation because I don't think there is any terminology in it that restricts anything to "near Japan". Maybe you would like to make it look like "near Japan" to have it at least somehow linked to "self-defense".

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I believe your understanding of the supreme courts role is not accurate. While the supreme court is the highest institution to interpret the constitution, it is not able to make or revise it. The constitution is a document that has to reflect the will of the people and in a democracy the people have the ultimate say on the constitution. That is why there is a compulsory referendum and the supermajority rule for any change.

You mentioned this security bill. Please stop shifting goal posts.

Because it would allow the SDF to engage in various kinds of warfare that are only vaguely defined by the artificial term "collective self-defense", and in case that there is no direct attack on Japan and its people, which would require some form of self-defense to survive, this would amount to "... the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes", which is clearly prohibited in article 9.

More proof that you haven't read the bill. The term 'collective self defense' in of itself is not used in this bill for the exact reason you pointed which is it's vagueness. What it does however, to pout it simply ,is to aid an ally under attack and if not done so, would jeorpadize "right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" of the Japanese citizens.

Because the majority of Japanese citizens believe that the current proposed legislation is unconstitutional and it is the constitution of the Japanese people, not Abe's or the LDP's constitution.

Because 'majority' think so is a very weak argument.

Because almost all experts and scholars share the above view of the unconstitutionality of the legislation.

That's another weak argument hiding behind these so-called experts and scholars who also believe the current SDF is unconstitutional.

My interpretation, and that of a majority of the Japanese people, is that it was achieved at least partly due to the existence of and by large also adherence to article 9.

As addressed earlier, that's because you treat the Cold War like it was an oral debate, never even contemplating the real threat that could of changed the landscape of Japan as we know it today.

I wonder if you have thoroughly read the legislation because I don't think there is any terminology in it that restricts anything to "near Japan". Maybe you would like to make it look like "near Japan" to have it at least somehow linked to "self-defense".

我が国と密接な関係にある他国に対する武力 攻撃が発生し、これにより我が国の存立が脅か され、国民の生命、自由及び幸福追求の.権利が 根底から覆される明白な危険があること"

I doubt this would occur in 'far Japan' but even if it did, why not?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

You mentioned this security bill. Please stop shifting goal posts.

You are the one constantly bringing up the supreme court and trying to make us believe that it stands above the will of the people.

More proof that you haven't read the bill. The term 'collective self defense' in of itself is not used in this bill for the exact reason you pointed which is it's vagueness.

It is THE inherent legal concept the whole bill was drafted around, it is mentioned in almost every official document explaining the bill, Abe frequently uses it and you have been using the term to justify the bill here more then once, so are you trying to fool us?

to pout it simply ,is to aid an ally under attack and if not done so, would jeorpadize "right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" of the Japanese citizens.

You put it simply but it sounds really obscure and surely not like any kind of legal category.

I suppose you are talking about one of the scenarios Abe was trying to explain in a TV show recently by using cardboard houses and firemen. It was funny to see how Abe got tangled up in his own arguments when people start asking what if questions. He didn't even fully understand the meaning of those odd allegories that were used in the model.

At least we understood that we are dealing with very complex and partly unforeseeable international conflict situations that Abe couldn't fully understand, predict and explain.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

You are the one constantly bringing up the supreme court and trying to make us believe that it stands above the will of the people.

No. We're talking about this security bill in which the final determination in regards to it's constitutionality is that of Supreme Court.

It is THE inherent legal concept the whole bill was drafted around, it is mentioned in almost every official document explaining the bill, Abe frequently uses it and you have been using the term to justify the bill here more then once, so are you trying to fool us?

You're the one that brought up the fact that the term is vaguely defined or artificial which I agree. What I'm pointing out is the fact that the said bill specifies the expansive role of the SDF and the constitutuionality regarding this. The supreme court, if it comes to a point on the ruling of this bill (when it becomes a law), will not decide the constitutionality of the dynamics of 'collective self defense' for the reason that each state has implemented their own which for instance, includes the ability to aid an ally without any prerequisites and hurdles that the current security bill has to go through.

You put it simply but it sounds really obscure and surely not like any kind of legal category.

I hate to break it to you but as it stands under the current law, SDF cannot aid an ally despite the fact that it would jeorpadize the "right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness" of the Japanese citizens.

I suppose you are talking about one of the scenarios Abe was trying to explain in a TV show recently by using cardboard houses and firemen. It was funny to see how Abe got tangled up in his own arguments when people start asking what if questions. He didn't even fully understand the meaning of those odd allegories that were used in the model.

Yes. I would have to say that the guests were 'insulted' and started going off in tangents about, for instance, who starts the fire.

In reality, who cares? Do you honestly want the Japanese government to ignore the flames which is about to close in on Japan's house simply because the Japanese government is questioning who and how the fire was started?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@bam_booJUL. 23, 2015 - 02:40AM JST

I don't know, bam_boo. One can always delay in a web-debate by claiming he doesn't get it or accept it. But since I at least tried to answer your question, perhaps you can give me your answer so I can chew on it alongside answering your question again.

Collective self-defence is probably only a real issue in Japan, thus its lack of an English Wiki page. For all that, it is not very hard. In collective self-defence, countries knowingly possess less defensive force than is really required to defend vital interests by themselves against the probable enemy. This may be because they flat out can't, or because they can but it is too costly. Further, the collective structure means that each country knows it can't go it alone, which suppresses their aggressive urge.

However, because each country possesses insufficient defensive force and knows it, it also means that when someone gets attacked, everyone in the collective had better enthusiastically contribute to the defense. Not because it is honorable to help defend one's buddies, but because the easy loss of that country's defensive forces to the enemy means you can't defend yourself with what's left of the alliance. Your last chance to defend yourself successfully is not when Probable Enemy attacks you, it is when it attacks your Ally. So it is still self defence, despite the word "collective". That's the core principle of collective self-defense.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Only Shin-chan would defend the indefensible

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

China is a super-power country like US or Russia. No chance to fight against them other than WWIII. Then defense army can make sense. Attack, no way!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

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