politics

Abe heads to Australia after step back from postwar pacifism

17 Comments
By Tim Kelly

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17 Comments
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I feel that Japanese leaders have been forced to reconsider the position and mandate of the Defence Forces due to the rise of a belligerent China, and the village idiot - North Korea, doing what it does. The unpredictability of these two means that Japan is taking a very serious risk by not taking the necessary precautions, which includes playing a part in defence treaties with Allies and other countries in the region. But this will be a very fine balancing act, because if China initiates a military conflict with one of these countries it may be an indirect way of drawing Japan into war. I think Japan is actually in a fairly tricky position in this respect.

5 ( +9 / -4 )

It is rather obvious at this stage that China's belligerence has many nations concerned, and at the end of the day should China start a real war they will be facing an alliance of countries that will not allow them to attain their goal of complete regional dominance. Japan's actions are clearly geared for that event, which we all hope we will never see. This article shows the real word where two former enemies from WWII are now allies in the face of a new powerful dictatorship.

2 ( +10 / -8 )

Australia is a rich, moderately harmless (from China's POV) country which lacks the technology and engineers to design and build these diesel-electric quiet submarines.

However, I think the real prize is for Japan to build Soryus for Taiwan. I'm sure Abe thinks that the agreement with Australia is a dry-run for a similar agreement with Taiwan.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

• Alejandro S. ArashiJul. 06, 2014 - 08:53AM JST Australia is a rich, moderately harmless (from China's POV) country which lacks the technology and engineers to design and build these diesel-electric quiet submarines. However, I think the real prize is for Japan to build Soryus for Taiwan. I'm sure Abe thinks that the agreement with Australia is a dry-run for a similar agreement with Taiwan.

Study geopolitics before you post. Taiwan is currently ruled by immigrants from China, Abe thinks they are Chinese spies. The regime has been begging USA for top secret weapons (4th gen fighters, etc) for quite a while, check how many such items US has allowed.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Well said, Tamarama and OssanAmerica. Too many people still believe this is a simple Japan-China problem.

The region ignores China at its peril (luckily, it isn't - though many of those commenting here will no doubt simply flee to the safety of their home countries should a war break out). While I would love for Japan not to amend its constitution, it would be foolish for any country not to change in the face of significant shifts in the region.

China could become such a force for good in this world - look at its human assets: a clever people with a fantastic history, inventive, hardworking, resilient....all led, unfortunately, by a leadership bent on retaining control for its own benefit, paying lip service to anti-corruption, trampling human rights, ignoring international agreements. This extends to other regions: Look at its recent white paper in Hong Kong (protected by the international agreement of one country, two systems) and its proposal that the independent judiciary be 'patriotic', look at the stifling of free speech in the media at the hands of sponsored thugs - this, and the proposed national education espousing the 'benefits' of a one-party system are causing many their birthplace.

China's leadership plans domination through soft power (making countries dependent on it through trade) and hard power (land grabs and military might). We can look back at history and see many nations that did similar things but that doesn't mean it's right for countries to do this today. Japan did unspeakable things in China in the 1930s and 40s, but if you believe China is still outraged by these things from a moral standpoint then you are being taken for a fool.

Yes, really - taken for a fool. The Chinese leadership is very good at manipulating others' love of money and sense of morality and justice. (Japan did terrible things to China? Hang on, many of those the Japanese killed were nationalists, the very same people that Mao's communists were killing.)

Ask yourself one question: do you honestly think the Chinese leadership shares the same morality as you?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

hatsoff

Ask yourself one question: do you honestly think the Chinese leadership shares the same morality as you?

Which is why it's rather rich of them to be continually harping on about the misery Japan has visited upon China, without for one second taking an honest and repentant view on the atrocities the Chinese Communist Party is responsible for directly in China, and indirectly in places like Cambodia. In fact, the Chinese Communist Part are one of the most murderous ruling regimes in history, if not the most murderous.

I think anyone with a bit of perspective looks at what they say and do through a very circumspect lens. They simply have not proven themselves to be even remotely trustworthy, either domestically or Internationally. Not by a long shot. Savvy international countries like Japan know this all too well.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Quote: "A sub designed for Australia may even be made in Japanese shipyards, a option that would allow Japan to better keep track of sensitive technology, a source in Tokyo involved in the discussion told Reuters. Australia, lacking the facilities and engineers to carry out the project at home, would need to invest heavily if it were to build the vessels itself."

And here in a nutshell this is the 3rd arrow of Abenomics: Retooling moribund shipyards in Japan to build military class naval vessels for export, and developing various other arms for export industries from within the giants of J Inc. Japan can no longer dominate in consumer electronics and automotive production but it is well positioned for a shift into arms dealing worldwide. That's why lifting restrictions on collective self-defense was so important to the LDP agenda. It opens the path for supplying any ally around the world with all the firepower they require.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

That's why lifting restrictions on collective self-defense was so important to the LDP agenda. It opens the path for supplying any ally around the world with all the firepower they require.

So now American arms suppliers have a "good" competitor and Irony that US has given tacit support to Japan's collective-self-defense resolution (?)

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

“So now American arms suppliers have a "good" competitor and Irony that US has given tacit support to Japan's collective-self-defense resolution (?)”

The dollar Japan earns will go straight to US, such as the 40 to 60 F35s designated for South Korea probably will be cancelled and the slots snapped up by Japan.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

"Mad dogs and Englishmen walk in the noonday sun." In this case, you commentators may or may not be Englishmen, but you are all walking in the noonday sun. You babble on about one military strategy after another, yet no one mentions that we live in the nuclear age. Japan, in order to compete militarily on the world stage, must develop nuclear weapons. Are nuclear weapons a threat to human survival? Can any nation truly defend themselves in a nuclear conflagration? The only real answer (if survival is important) is for Japan to impeach Abe and reclaim full ownership of Article 9. There's already a movement by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom to bring Article 9 to the U.S.Constitution. A golden opportunity exists for Japan and the U.S. to form an international coalition to support the UN mandate to abolish war making as a political - economic tool.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

David3Jul. 06, 2014 - 02:38PM JST "Mad dogs and Englishmen walk in the noonday sun." In this case, you commentators may or may not be Englishmen, but you are all walking in the noonday sun. You babble on about one military strategy after another, yet no one mentions that we live in the nuclear age. Japan, in order to compete militarily on the world stage, must develop nuclear weapons. Are nuclear weapons a threat to human survival? Can any nation truly defend themselves in a nuclear conflagration? The only real answer (if survival is important) is for Japan to impeach Abe and reclaim full ownership of Article 9. There's already a movement by the Women's International League for Peace and Freedom to bring Article 9 to the U.S.Constitution. A golden opportunity exists for Japan and the U.S. to form an international coalition to support the UN mandate to abolish war making as a political - economic tool.”

If survival is important to you, I suggest you encourage Japan to arm itself, and to form military alliances with as many friendly countries as possible, to such an extent that both China and Japan’s military strengths are equal, each afraid of the other, each afraid to move first lest the other moves instantly too, thus peace is maintained.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I am in full agreement with those good posts on here, Japan needs these alliances and security pacts not only for its security but for it's economy, Japan wants to become a major supplier of arms and military hardware and technology and in doing so will help to stabilise itself in more ways than one.

China doesn't yet realise who and what it has been playing with.

Japanese cars are number 1 in the world and soon so will its weapons be.

Mug you china for harassing and haranguing this peaceful pacifist nation, pick a fight with any pacific neighbours soon and you may find yourself in a hell of a bind with no friends and no trade partners.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

"...that may help seal a deal to build Australia a fleet of stealth submarines."

And there you have it -- money. Anyone who doubted that this was about arms selling or buying and that it won't create another arms race is foolish. I find it amusing to watch people jump to Japan's defense on going to Australia by talking about how terrible China is in their opening sentences, when that is only a side-note.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

I wish he'd take a step down rather than 'a step back' or a trip down under...

He is bad news...every bit as bad news as his counterparts in China and Korea. The Western countries hope to use Japan both as a speed bump tp slow China down and as a source of state of the art weapons technology to keep the global military industrial complexses churning to reap economic benefits.

China is bad news too. But how did it get to be so powerful anyway? Because countries like Japan and Australia (to name but a few) outsourced their labor at lower costs to China to reap economic benefits.

Either way, China's rise could have been avoided if most Western economies (of which Japan is one) had not been so greedy.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Australia is also considering proposals from Germany and Sweden.

My fishing boat diesel engine Yamane yacht (SG840 style) have to stretch the knot for 38 times for warm up. Imagine I am in the combat zone, my boat has already been under sea and I am flying on the heaven.

Aussie navy authority should not trust the Japanese diesel engines reliability. Germany and Sweden are master of diesel engine designs before the Japanese start making the engines.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

OctagonJul. 07, 2014 - 03:32PM JST Aussie navy authority should not trust the Japanese diesel engines reliability. Germany and Sweden are master of >diesel engine designs before the Japanese start making the engines.

That's really nonsense. Japan has been building marine diesel engines under license from B&W, Sulzer, MAN since the 1950s. In the 70-80s Japanese shipyards were building some 80% of the worlds ships and even today they have a reputation for high reliability.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Ironically, the Yamane SG840 is of Chinese manufacture, although the designs and engineering probably initially came from Japan (as the maker claims). Using a Japanese name (Yamane) on the company masthead is purposefully misleading, giving a suggestion of Made in Japan product quality. Using Japanese names for Chinese made products is a widespread deceptive commercial practice.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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