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Japan to impose sanctions against Russia over Crimea

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It’s a good intention for Japan to make a last minute effort, unfortunately, it;s too late, the Crimea train has left the station.

Japan may have to embrace the reality and join the international community to reshuffle Russian cards and get ready for a long and possible rough ride ahead, so buckle up.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

But over 95% of the people who live in Crimea want to join Russia! Majority rules!

23 ( +32 / -9 )

Japan is always trying to make comments to make themselves look important, but reality speaks out loud and Japan cant do anything about it at all. With 95% of the people in Crimea voting to join Russia, Japan and the rest of the world cant really do anything at all. Now the final decision will end with Russia and no one else.

7 ( +20 / -13 )

Japan is just trying to be nice to your boss. Unfortunately japan, germany and italy has no foreign policy. Only U.S. foreign policy. Simple as that.

10 ( +23 / -13 )

What's the difference between this and the Kosovo situation again? I don't know why the west was so pro-Kosovo independence but is so against this move.

17 ( +23 / -6 )

And how does Japan expect to do anything about it? Their foreign policies are basically dictated by U.S. policy anyway, so I don't see how another country is going to change matters.

7 ( +11 / -4 )

Better not say anything since Russian isn't gonna listen to Japan.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

The meaning of a referendum seems to be lost on the west and Japan

From Merriams online-

1 a : the principle or practice of submitting to popular vote a measure passed on or proposed by a legislative body or by popular initiative b : a vote on a measure so submitted 2 : a diplomatic agent's note asking for government instructions

It seems that popular initiative has spoken......

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Not saying I agree but often possession is nine tenths of the law.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Majority rules, as has already been pointed out,is the democratic way, thats how we've been educated. So as for sanctions and the interference by governments of other countries is out of order. Plus, the history of the Crimea makes good reading, if only politicians took the time to look it up. "The Autonomous Republic of Crimea is an autonomous parliamentary republic within Ukraine[7] and is governed by the Constitution of Crimea in accordance with the laws of Ukraine." this was taken from wikipedia. So the majority wish to have allegiance with Russia rather than Ukraine, the peoples choice. As for the Japanese government urging Russia not to annex Crimea, they should maybe take a look to the south of Tokyo to a group of islands and remember their own history regarding annexing. .

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Oh yeah like that's going to change anything...

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Yeah, don't recognize the voice of the public. That would be ... um ... nevermind. It's only "legitmate " if it coincides with what The Exceptional Ones say is acceptable.

6 ( +12 / -6 )

Until Japan actually says they support Ukraine directly, and that they will not recognize the referendum and are going to put sanctions on Russia, this is all just lip service as usual. I highly doubt Japan will actually put sanctions in place, though -- that would jeopardize the oil imports they made deals with Russia on, not to mention put off any talks on the islands issue.

7 ( +13 / -6 )

Why? What possible interest Japan has .. except following US lead... Crimea was Russian territory since 1700 , it was kind off associated to Ukraine before but now Ukraine dont feel like being friendly anymore and most Crimeans are Russian so I honestly see no problem, Ukraine new government can go to hell

8 ( +13 / -5 )

Monkey see, monkey do.

3 ( +8 / -5 )

The "West" are still claiming that their support of the violent coup de'tat in Ukraine is legal, but the VOTE in Crimea for secession/annexation is illegal?

Not hard to figure out whats going on when you consider the recent potential of natural gas in the area.

9 ( +14 / -5 )

Japan is afraid the Northern Islands would have their own referendum too, then she'll never get it back.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

If I was a Russian nationalist, thankfully I am not a citizen, I too would be pretty much set against returning the northern islands. Japan has a security treaty with the US which obligates it to whatever is demanded from the US including building military bases whereever they want such as those in Okinawa. Naturally returning the northern islands means that US offensive weapons can be built over there in any of those 4 island and missles can reach Russian military port and installations much sooner than if they were fired from anywhere else in Japan.

Now, do you think that Japan at this age and time resist/ignore "demands and orders" from the US Department of Defense if the US wanted to enhance their military presence in Hokkaido and beyond as they are doing now in Poland and other border nations along the Russian border? Japan Kiss your Islands Goodbye.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

If I was a Russian nationalist, thankfully I am not a citizen, I too would be pretty much set against returning the northern islands. Japan has a security treaty with the US which obligates it to whatever is demanded from the US including building military bases whereever they want such as those in Okinawa.

If Russia is willing (which they're not) to return the islands, they can demand as a condition that no base ever be built there. Of course, Japan could violate that agreement (like Russia violates the 1994 agreement regarding Ukraine) and be sanctioned as well (assuming Europe goes along with it, of course China would, but the U.S. won't).

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

mitokomonalexMar. 18, 2014 - 11:02AM JST

missles can reach Russian military port and installations much sooner than if they were fired from anywhere else in Japan.

Have you ever seen a map of Hokkaido and "Northern Territory"? What Russian military port do you have in mind? If you are talking about Vladivostok or Nakhodka, Hokkaido is much closer.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Well, kudos on Japan for stepping it up and making a pretty clear decision on the matter. I just hope they don't backtrack and ask Russia for 'exemption' on thoughts about the islands, etc. I have to say, though, that through this declaration by Japan the door on the island issue has just slammed shut for good.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Just great! The Japanese dog is wagging its tail at its American owner and barking in chorus with the ones in England and Western Europe. It will shrink with its tail between its hind legs when the Russian Bear roars in the Far Northeast.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Pointless. I have a little trouble understanding how we discriminate between rebellions we support and others we don't. and why it is sometimes admirable to see people voting and other times not.

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Obviously Japan must publicly tow the US line , but privately Abe must be really ticked off by the timing of this whole Ukranian / Crimean situation. Any hopes he had of having Putin over in Japan later this year and making a statement about a compromise agreement reached over Kuril islands are gone down the drain now. Abe badly needs a foreign policy win in the neighbourhood to show the electorate. Consequently the softening / backtracking of Japan`s stance on the "comfort women " review issue with SK to patch up relations with Seoul now that the improvement in Japan / Russia relationship has hit a wall.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Japan can not stand up to modern Russia ALONE, but with the USA, the EU, Japan etc...sooner or later, that idiot dictator PUTIN will understand the meaning of NYET?? NIET?? NO!! Any many, many languages!

-20 ( +2 / -22 )

I'm sure Russia is quaking in her boots at the thought of the mighty Japan introducing sanctions...!

6 ( +12 / -6 )

marcelito: "Obviously Japan must publicly tow the US line , but privately Abe must be really ticked off by the timing of this whole Ukranian / Crimean situation."

To an extent, yes. The island issue is now done, I'd say. On the other hand, though, this could serve in Abe's favour in terms of his push to resume NPPs, given that sanctions introduced by Japan would certainly scuttle fuel import deals.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

Hahahaha, lol. Visa easing!

Japan has most strict visa requirements to ex-USSR countries(except Baltic, which in EU), even to Ukraine, which unilaterally cancelled visas to japanese citizens. So nobody expected that there is any visa easing programme... Lol. Actually Japan doesn't have "soft power" in Russia, Russia-Japan(33bln$) trading amount is same with South Korea(26bln$), even Japan's economy 3 times bigger than Korean, so nobody in Russia cares about Russian-Japanese relationship :) So, it seems like Japan will have only unfriendly countries in neighborhood. So sad Japan is occupied by U.S.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

Japan may have to embrace the reality and join the international community to reshuffle Russian cards and get ready for a long and possible rough ride ahead, so buckle up.

And while they "embrace reality", China gets stronger, they alienate one of the few countries relatively able to stand up to them and effectively throw themselves further into the mercy of the continued graces of the United States. Yes, we all knew this was 99% going to happen, Japan is very much a lapdog of the States, but I said it is a dumb move and I stand by it.

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Well, it's better than nothing I guess. The world has to stand up to the joke that is Russia and the comical 'democracy' they are peddling from the Kremlin. That referendum is an insult to the intelligence of anyone who lives in a democratic country.

-8 ( +3 / -11 )

I think its nice with a majority vote on many things but the issue with crimea, I think, is weather the numbers registered are true at all, or just staged as most of this change. What we have seen so far is a well planned change executed in perfect coordination. Im not sure "the people" has been very involved in it. The next issue is the violation of international agreements. If everyone breaks agreements after their own needs the world is definitely walking out on the board. This is why it is important that as many countries as possibly show their resentment of this kind of action. Japans measures may not be much but it is still a clear message. If Russia can do this and no one cares then what will be next?

-7 ( +2 / -9 )

@Sentiments: Do you know exactly what the vote was on? It was either join Russia or have Crimea become independent to join Russia, there were only 2 choices. There was no minimum voter turnout so boycotting the vote actually strengthened the illegitimate nature of it. It would be like having only 2 choices you can choose from at the 2012 US election; Obama as president or Joe Biden as vice president. Not to mention that all the polling stations were surrounded by pro-Russian lynch gangs sanctioned by armed Russian soldiers lol. You'd probably get a fairer election in North Korea.

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

will not begin talks on a new investment accord, an outer space accord and an accord aimed at preventing risky military activities

Also, Korean and Chinese companies surely happy that Japan will stay out from Russian market. Yeah, investments will be useful for Russia, but it's not a such big deal. Outer space accord... Hmmm. Does anybody in Japan know about Yuri Gagarin, first man in space? Does japanese know that Russia has leadership in rocket launches? Russia was leader in space for 60 years without any Japanese help, so in fact this agreement useful only for Japan. Also there is ESA, which never freeze partnership with Roscosmos. Risky military activities - I heard about that. Russia loves it. For example, Russian bombers usually flies around Japan. And always japanese JSDF gives the alarm.

So all these agreements in fact usefull for Japan, for Russia usefull only 1st, but it's not such necessary. It seems like sabotage of japanese foreign interests in favor of the U.S. foreign interests.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Not really in some sort of driver's seat, just an isolated island nation. It looked like Abe was doing some sports with Putin, but alas. Wrong timing.

No Eastasian part in shaping Europe. In pressuring the bear from outright annexion into independence of something perceived too close to home.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The American have spoken, and so Japanese echos.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Japan will suspend negotiations on easing visa requirements, and will not begin talks on a new investment accord, an outer space accord and an accord aimed at preventing risky military activities,” it added, without elaborating.

Reality is Japan needs Russia Gas for energy supply as tasty man needs water for drinking. Japan needs Russia good will for getting some of the Islands of NT. Japan is no longer in hey days of 1980s which can blackmail Russia for current crisis.

Even US and EU are not united for uniform trade and diplomatic sanction against Russia. Unlike US, EU is less willing to offend Japan. Russia has energy tasty neighbor PRC just at the door step.

If Putin is offended by Abe, he will increase the price of Gas selling to Japan ten times more than PRC. He will support PRC and ROK diplomatically for territory dispute. Japan is more to lose rather than other way around.

Japan is not US which has no concern about the energy security . Japan national interest is embracing and accommodating Russia. Japan should change the new independent foreign policy for pursuing her interest instead of pleasing others.

http://www.marketwatch.com/story/weak-sanctions-dont-put-any-pressure-on-russia-2014-03-17?reflink=MW_news_stmp

2 ( +8 / -6 )

This is a good move by Japan. You have to know who's side you're on. Getting chummy with the Russian was a bad move from the get go. Its not like them Russians don't know what you're thinking. I think a clear cut from the Russians is the best way to go.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

wow kaimycahl .. I didnt realize 5 year olds posting here, well done youngster!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No problem,"Back-door Business" is Japan's common policy, any good example? plenty, Myanmar, NKorea, Iran...!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

"That referendum is an insult to the intelligence of anyone who lives in a democratic country."

Yeah, whilst the effective coup that happened in Kiev when an elected ( if unpopular ) president was overthrown by violent street protests is a shining example of democratic principles in action, right?

6 ( +10 / -4 )

I don't for the life of me understand why Obama and the like are getting their knickers in a knot over this. If they want to seperate and join Russia, that is not "our" business. Clearly the majority want this - though I don't think for a minute that election didn't have problems. Stay out of their business and worry about our own. When will "we" learn?

8 ( +12 / -4 )

@marcelito: You can blame the violence on the government after it started sniping it's own people; I think that's easily grounds for an overthrow. Not sure what country you come from, but it's probably one where you willingly and happily allow the government to trample over you with that sort of attitude, prolly the US.

You also compare the reaction of Ukrainians to the killing of their own countrymen by their farce Russian government to the invasion and forced annexation of a different country? Uh, what?

Anyway, I'm happy for the Crimeans, they must have been really happy to be able to celebrate the last time they can effectively practice democracy.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

Well played, Crimea.

Those crafty Crimeans have finally found a way to stop their votes from meaning anything anymore: vote to join the Soviet Union.

Er...I mean Russia. No idea what Japan is complaining about.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

dcog9065 - There is more than one theory about who might have been sniping at both the protesters and police officers at Maidan square , you really should widen your horizons and read news from more than one source you know, Fox news et al is not always the most impartial, surprise surprise..

As for the " grounds for overthrow " - the protests to overthrow Yanukovich were going on for months before they escalated into bloodshed ( where both protesters and police were killed by gunshots )

"You also compare the reaction of Ukrainians to the killing of their own countrymen by their farce Russian government to the invasion and forced annexation of a different country? Uh, what?"

I compare the overthrow of an elected president ( and I,m in no way his fan ) through street protest to the referendum where clear majority expressed their opinion. WIth majority of the Crimean population being Russian speaking / ethnically Russian ( given the well known Crimean history ) that is not at all a surprising result despite the West having hard time accepting it.

Btw, as pointed out by others above - compare this situation with US support for Kosovo during the Balkan crisis. You do see the double standard , don`t you?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Japan should stay out of this, it has nothing to do with this problem. On Sunday, another referendum will take place in Venice to get independence from Italy and NATO. And Scotland will held its referendum on independence from the rest of the UK in September, and Catalonia, where around half the population say they want to break away from Spain. It looks like Japan has to make many more sanctions in the future.

4 ( +8 / -4 )

And then think of Syria... Which I also don't believe we have any business being in. Why is this any different? Because it's big, bad Russia or because Syria is Muslim and who cares?They have nothing to offer "us"?

6 ( +7 / -1 )

Democracy only counts when the vote goes the way NATO countries etc. want it to.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

I'm onboard for everything except for the "accord aimed at preventing risky military activities"... that one might come in handy.

I think it's good that Japan speaks up here. It's an important player on the world stage and it SHOULD be on the record as being against blatant land-grabs from overly aggressive continental powers under the flimsiest of pretenses....and Russia.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Japan is so not an important player on the world stage. If anything, Japan is the annoying little brother that keeps ticking people off - more so with Abe kicking the hornest's nets known as Korea and China. Japan could very easily fall off the face of the earth tomorrow and the world really wouldn't miss it. Harsh but the truth.

Sancations... let us know how Europe should heat their homes next winter without Russia.

2 ( +7 / -5 )

@ boweevil No, democracy DOESN'T count when it's done with a gun to your head. We have laws for a reason. There are proper channels to seek independence (look at Scotland, for example), whats going on in Crimea is Fisher Price "My First Empire" level obvious

@tmarie, if the 3rd largest economy in the world isn't "important" than I don't know what we're even talking about. If Japan "fell of the face of the Earth", we'd lose the largest stock exchange in Asia, many of our advanced technological components makers, the leader in biomedical research, etc.... I think someone would miss it

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

@tmarie - I think Japan gets gas from Russia too, so how will I cook dinner soon? To be democratic, there should be a referendum in Japan too whether we agree with putting sanctions on Russia or not. In the end, we normal citizens will have to pay the price.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Foxie, no idea! i'm all about solar power!

Shinujuku, 3rd and dropping. Can you name me anything that Japan produces that another country couldn't? So Japan's stockmarket goes - opening it up for other markets. Advanced tech makers? Um, the 80s are calling and want their fond memories back. A leader in bio medical but not the only, right? The world could easily survive without Japan. Manga and anime fans might suffer a bit but otehr could easily take their place. The world can't survive as we know it without Russia's gas nor wheat.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

When Japan announced that they were sanctioning Russia over Crimea, you could hear Dick Cheney and the rest of his Neo-Con gang laughing from outside the White House. Obama was working on a Birdie on the 17th hole.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Sorry Shinjuku No Yaju... I'd have to disagree with you there.

Mosedegh , Iran 1953, Allende, Chile 1973 etc. Seems clear to me that Crimea is far from being 'My first Empire level'. Fisher Price is an American company isn't it?

What you seem to be saying is that the referendum in the Crimea is 'unconstitutional'. So the constitution that was in place in the Ukraine- which has just rejected its previous government- is suddenly binding in the Crimea where everyone had a gun to their heads as they went to the polls?

4 ( +5 / -1 )

@boweevil, You disagree with what? You think that if someone broke into your house, put a gun to the head of your child and said “Sell me this house for a dollar”, that that contract should be legal and binding? That the world should recognize that as legitimate? I wonder what you’d say if Mexico decided to invade Cuba and did that. Or Canada invaded Seattle? Or if China did it to Taiwan? In all those cases, I’m sure a percentage (maybe even a majority) might actually LIKE the result…but that doesn’t make it legal.

If we accept that, then strap in and get ready for world war 3. If being strong enough to take something means you should then the world better prepare to speak a lot more Chinese, eat a lot more Big Macs and drink a lot more vodka because it’s gonna 3 massive “nations” and a lot of vassal states.

And sorry for using a colloquial expression. Fisher-Price makes toys for babies, I’m just saying that the activity is easily understood.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Japan is the world's largest importer of LNG with about 8% imported from Russia but if sanctions are imposed that could be made up by increasing from the larger countries like Malaysia or Indonesia. http://www.arcticgas.gov/sites/default/files/images/japan-lng-imports-by-source-2011.png

Japan imports about 6 million metric tons of wheat. Last year, Japan cancelled GMO USA wheat imports. Most of the corn imports come from the USA. About 1.554 million tons of wheat are imported from Canada making it the second latest buyer of Canadian wheat with China buying 2.73 million tons. Japan also imports 1.21 million tons of wheat for animal feed which was increased because of the drop in the American corn crop due to drought.In recent years, Russia banned or decreased its export of wheat because of domestic problems.

Generally, its a bad idea for Japan to impose sanctions against Russia because that will hurt Japan more than Russia in both short and long terms.

The Ukraine crisis is important to Europe and to some extend to America but has nothing to do with Japan which is in a region with borders on China, Russia, South and North Korea and needs to maintain whatever good relationship with Russia that it can since there are always problems with the other countries mentioned.

Putin will have a long memory if Japan imposes sanctions.

I'm not even sure sanctions work and mostly end up hurting the little guy.

In the long run the crisis in Ukraine will only be resolved by some kind of division of west and east.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

@ zichi, of course it could be inconvenient but every country (including Japan) has a stake in the whole Nation-state-with-sovereign-borders thing. If Crimea really wants to join Russia, the way to do it is to have Russian troops fully withdraw and do an internal referendum free of foreign intervention. I think the damage to the Japanese economy in a world where you can just roll tanks into a country and POOF it's mine now, is more than the damage of minimal sanctions. The slap on the wrist sanctions are just a way of showing Russia that the world is not cool with how this was done. I really don't understand why so many seem to be for this thing...I'd HONESTLY love it if someone could explain that.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

It's weird that Japanese never learns anything from history. After 1989's Tiananmen square Incident, Japan also did the same thing like what they are doing this time: following US and other countries to put a sanction on China, but then try to appease China in secret so that Japan can benefit from it by taking the market shares other countries left, it does work for a while for Japan but look what a friend you got now? What goes around comes around, dude.

What Japan really need learn from the recent history is that only nuclear weapon can protect a country, friends (even friends like US) are not to be trusted, so no matter how difficult it its, the first priority of this Japan government should be to get Japan some nuclear weapons to protect itself. Actually the Putin's success at Crimea can only make Chairman Xi to be bolder over Senkaku Islands dispution, after Xi already openly claimed that Putin is his model. So if you want to get some nuclear weapons, better be hurry.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Shinjuku No Yaju

I disagree with idea of 'selective democratic outcomes'.

Are people in the Crimea being forced against their will on this issue? You seem to speak with absolute authority that they are. I don't know where all this putting a gun to head of children for bargain basement real estate prices comes from. And I know what Fisher Price products are....I stopped thinking about them quite some time ago.

It is fantastic what the Ukraine has achieved in the past few weeks. Ridding themselves of an oppressive hegemonic pro-Russian government. The people spoke and fought for what they believed was theirs. But what of the Crimeans who are ethnically and politically closer to Russia? Should they be forced to acquiesce to a brand new political status quo that they didn't want to begin with....because its 'the law'?

Whose law is it? The law is only relative to who happens to be writing it. It certainly seems a hypercritical position to cheer on the independence of one nation while espousing the subjugation of another.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Shinjuku No Yaju

@ zichi, of course it could be inconvenient but every country (including Japan) has a stake in the whole Nation-state-with-sovereign-borders thing. If Crimea really wants to join Russia, the way to do it is to have Russian troops fully withdraw and do an internal referendum free of foreign intervention.

The outcome for the Crimea will be the same because the majority support Russia or are Russians, and the same in the east part of Ukraine and that's why I think in the end it will come down to a division of the country which is in fact big enough to take it.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Boweevil, I ask you to do a thought experiment than. Imagine if right after Abe was elected the Chinese landed 15,000 troops in southern Okinawa, seized every military base they could. They block all TV and Radio stations and in their place broadcast intense anti LDP propaganda. Then, with Chinese troops walking the streets, Chinese tanks parked on corners and Chinese flags hanging from buildings they declare a vote. "You can become an independent nation called Okinawa, or you can become a province of China". No option is given to remain Japanese. Would you regard the outcome valid, and would you denounce other nations for not excepting this results as 100% legitimate? (knowing that the mods will erase it for some reason but hopefully you'll read it before they do). :)

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

But over 95% of the people who live in Crimea want to join Russia! Majority rules!

Anyone remember the election Putin "won" when he returned to power? You can find video on Youtube of ballot boxes already stuffed before the doors to the voting precincts opened, and how all of the official pens for marking ballots used erasable ink. Already there are reports of "voters" in Crimea dropping handfuls of ballots in the ballots boxes, rather than the single ballot which was supposedly the only one which voters were given. And of course, energy companies have already been nationalized, so as to be Russian owned and operated as soon as the dust settles.

Japan has been softer on sanctions not because of territorial issues, but because Japanese companies have already signed large deals for Russian gas, and any meaningful sanctions will necessarily nullify those contracts. All Japan needs now in addition to the sales tax hike coming up is a huge increase in energy prices if Russian gas is taken out of the market.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Japan is under pressure of the united state to make this kind of public statement, like europe is under pressure to interveen on founding those miraculous protestating freedom movement to limite the progression of Russia, in an effort of rebuild their old standing (not necesseraly communist).

This is still cold war, just more hidden to limit the impact on the USA.

Is it right to destabilise a country, created economic crisis to borbid her to choose the way of ancestry ? What are the link entre Ukraine and europe. Slave people and the european style don't get along very well.

Okinanwa go created a community with China. You will see that japaneese people may be are not that bad. That's the same problem here.

In a globalising economy you have to make choice with who you will wed for centuries to come. May be for Ukrainian Russian are just more like them. At least for the Crimean(the russian minority who will have to abandon their language in the end or create a new internal problem like in Belgium), who had to live next to civil ethnic war of yougoslavia and kosovo, i am sure being rattached to Russia is a great relief. They will be preserve of war and Russia will want to proove herself able to help for their economic expension. They is lot of potenciel tourism expectatives here to devlop with in front Turkia and muslim movement making themself stronger everydays forbidding travel to stranger.

I am sure the Russian will help better the crimée than europe would be able to do in a severe economic crisis, where the german accounting, is pretty much like the grec one to win market support, and will be their next debt crisis.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Ridiculous. Abe has just undone a year's worth of work for nothing.

Not sure what is more laughable; the fact that Japan caved in to Western pressure, or the fact that Obama and his gang of idiots think "sanctions" are actually going to have any effect whatsoever.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

hidingout

this is just oboma publicity for the american people. They will do nothing. Russia is not the type to go half way after a warning. It give something to talk about to journalist and make bad reputation to Russia. Always their main political goal to forbid russia to have political power back. Which is a shame since their have greater influence on the most difficults counstries, we have to deal with, on the matter of nuclear weapon and sell.

This is just journalist playing the political game, instead of doing real journalistic conclusive work. American propaganda have always work that way.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Shinjuku-

The hypothetical you've constructed is in no way analogous to the situation in the Crimean peninsula, where Russian bases have remained for over the past 50 years, where an overwhelmingly significant majority of the people consider themselves ethnically and politically Russian. All of your arguments thus far have been hypothetical with a tendency towards the dramatic with no grounding in fact or any demonstrable indication of a nuanced view on a complex situation.

Why not dispense with Fisher Price, guns to the heads of children, and imaginary Chinese invasions of Okinawa and look at the facts as they appear to be?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Shinjuku No YajuMar. 18, 2014 - 05:53PM JST

Okinawa and Crimea are totally different.

Crimea was part of Russia until 1954 when it was transferred to Ukraine under Soviet Union. As soon as Soviet Union was dissolved in 1991, Crimea declared independence from Ukraine. But after a political compromise, Crimea became an Autonomous Republic in Ukraine. The Autonomous Government is there for years. Majority of the people in Crimea is ethnic Russians. The people in Crimea may well think the political compromise is cancelled, if Ukraine becomes an anti-Russian nation. Given the long standing and repeatedly expressed will of the people in Crimea to be separated from Ukraine, I think the result of the recent referendum reflects the free will of the people in Crimea.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Shinjuku, without getting into details, let me note that the new "President" wasn't even elected to proper procedure.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

So first US/EU/JP supported to putsch an elected president to get someone who is on their line and now they don't accept the voting and boycott. Is this the new understanding of "democracy"?!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@Shinjuku

Let me fix for you please.

Imagine the people for Okinawa who are ethnic chinese had voted for Abe in a fair and democratic election and Abe had won. Then some violent protesters from mainland Japan overthrew the democratically elected Abe. Okinawa also had an important chinese base for years. Why should the people from Okinawa wants to remain in a country led by an illegitimate government? They didn't vote for that person who is in Kiev now. They even didn't have a say on this.

@Nadege

This is just journalist playing the political game, instead of doing real journalistic conclusive work. American propaganda have always work that way.

D'accord a 100%, for many american people though it is not propaganda because they are the land of the free , the good guys , the heroes, the best , the greatest country on the earth and that propaganda exists only in 3rd world commies countries, the bad guys, etc.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

I think the result of the recent referendum reflects the free will of the people i Crimea.

Exactly. I'd be interested in why you think Abe doesn't recognize that fact. Abe attended the Sochi Olympic ceremonies (going against the rest of the G8) and definitely made some points with Putin in doing so. Abe has worked hard to build a relationship with Putin over the past year. Why does he waste it all now by following along like Obama's pet?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Anyone remember the election Putin "won" when he returned to power?

Election in 2012 was clearest election in whole history of Russia(and maybe all ex-communist countries). It was able to connect to webcams, which show election process. Webcams were in every part of Russia, so even russian political opposition agreed with election results.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

when you just signed a LNG gas deal with russia..........are you trying not to save the economy....

2 ( +3 / -1 )

where Russian bases have remained for over the past 50 years

Over 200 years, from 1783, since Russian empire times.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I think that Russia and Putin are showing to the world that it is an impire! Why didn't they say about sovereighnity with Chechnya, Abhazia and Osetia? They will never listen to the world public- so Japan will never return its native islands of Kuril. Sanctions will leave Russia alone if China also will join the boicot.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Japan’s Russian cards hardly even had a chance even Ukrainian crisis would have not come to the sight.

All of the evidences suggest that Russians just used Abe’s fragile singleton motive to play for its advantage.(BTW, it worked on Abe until a couple weeks ago ) Those summits between Putin and Abe were merely political shows and decoys to keep Abe’s false hope alive in terms of getting a counterweight against the Chinese regime not to mention so called Japan’s independence from the US.

Here is the thing: Russians are the grandmasters when it comes to diplomatic theaters. Case in point, can anyone here name a more skilled professional diplomat than Mr. Sergey Lavrov in today’s world ? The US’s counterparts from Condoleezza Rice to John Kerry, none of them were and is able to get upper hands when dealing with him.

For Japan, my advice would be that given that the US and Japan alliance has worked since the war ended although there were some bumps here and there, It would be foolish to abandon the practice by ignoring the verification of Japan’s 69 years of peace and prosperity based on cooperation and support between thsoe two close allies.

Granted, because its geographic location and historical background, Japan faces more challenges than other countries in the worlds when coping with three superpowers in a close range, but with a vision and wisdom, plus a true leader, not only Japan can survive, but also shine.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Putin's not dumb. I'm sure he expected Abe to do this and will just brush it off as typical and non-important. As someone wrote above, Japan is very good at back door deals. You all should start thinking like a world leader and not an office lady.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Russia are just doing what big countries do - I would have thought the US, of all countries, could well appreciate that!

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Sorry, but this trouble has been going on for quite some time and Japan said nothing. It wasn't until the US and a few other countries spoke up and introduced sanctions did Japan jump on the wagon. Japan is just playing follow the leader. I doubt if Abe even knows what all the trouble is about. He's just following the US. He's more concerned about the 2020 Olympics.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Putin just did the speech of his life. The world hasn't seen a leader like him since Alexander the Great. The world needs someone like him; he should become the world's leader then we would live in a fair world. All the best to Mr Putin, be strong and show everyone who you are! I truly respect you! Look at the comments on the internet; the majority of the people worldwide support Putin.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

@Foxie - Your opinion of Putin might change if you go to Russia and openly criticize him.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

The tiny mouse is squeaking; a sign of forthcoming distress?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

97% of the people who voted wanted to break away from Ukraine. Since the ethnic Russians total 58% it would appear as if only the ethnic Russians had voted. It stinks.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Alright boweevil and CH, I knew that your response would be "not the same". So lets say America did what I described above in parts of Okinawa where the US military outnumbered local citizens. They then said that "we won the war, and gave the region back to japan, but now japan shouldn't have it because we don't like the new government." America then does what I described and (of course) the vote is a resounding success and swaths of Okinawa are now an American territory. Is that not worthy of sanctions? I'm just trying to understand where the line is...because it seem like the line is "anything that isn't THIS EXACT SITUATION is bad"

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It was rather embarrassing and contradicting when Japan asked the Russian not to annex the Crimea with its 97% majority vote. I wonder if Japan can get 50% or more from Okinawa. Oops it should be Ryukiu when Japan invaded the Ryukiu kingdom and annexed illegally last century?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Kudos to you Shinjuku.

But again its a hypothetical... First off, 'Let's say' and actual fact are two different things. Secondly, I can't claim to be any more of an expert on this than you.

I have no love for Russia and Superputin. The point is 'democracy' cannot be selective. If most of the people in the Crimea want to suckle from the teat of Mother Russia then it is not the world's business.

It really is ridiculous to say well done Ukraine for getting what you want,...but shame on you Russia for for forcing the majority of Crimeans to be doing what they want to do too.

The Russians are keen on keeping their naval ports at Sevastopol. Strategically the Americans are just as possessive of any of their own bases too. So the pot calling the kettle black is an interchangeable proposition in geopolitics and to think otherwise is to lose sight of reality in favor of convenient 'Home truths".

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Does any major nation even recognise Russia's illegal annexation over part of Ukraine? Probably China will be the only one. Russia and China - walking hand-in-hand, brothers in illegally annexing neighboring regions.

@ Shinjuku no Yaju - spot on points, Sir.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

@BurakuminDes

Most nations don't. recognize Russia's 'illegal annexation over part of the Ukraine'. But unless you or I know what the Crimeans actually want, neither of us are in a position to comment about it in an informed way. Is it an annexation if that is what the people want? That is the question that should be asked. Not how many-or which countries stand for it or against it.

Remember the Iraq war? Remember how many countries stood behind that? Were they right to do so? Not everyone will have the same answer.

We live in very dangerous times when it is easy to be 'reactive' to the slightest sensationalism. "Russia and China-walking hand in hand"....Gimme a break!

0 ( +5 / -5 )

If Abe and his gang really stands up to Putin, then Japan will lose somehow. Will Abe then become smaller? No. He will stand tall in Aisa and the world. The question is whether he will be brave enough to do what's right. He flip flops so often and may not even last beyond summer if the Japanese economy falters further!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

It's like Japan nationalizing Senkaku Island isn't it.. it's a smaller scale than Crimea incident but at core is the same thing, taking control of a land that is not your own..

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

No, it's nothing like the Senkakus. But I doubt Putin cares about either.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

In the case of the Senkakus- goats don't have a voice. In the case of the Crimea lets hope the people do. And whatever the people say is what should be. Not what either Putin or the 'West' says. Let the people speak in an internationally monitored referendum-if they say the same thing then all bets are off for the international sanctioners-if they change their vote then all bets are off for Putin. Neither Putin nor his western counterparts should be afraid to run it past the people one more time....but the reality is that both parties are so afraid of a potential rejection that they wont dare considering asking the Crimean people what they really want. And that is really the crux of the matter isn't it?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Sanction against Russia might be two ways. Sanctrioo of purchasing oils underground energy resource. Iran & various Middle East and African countries are eager to sell oil to Japan so this sanction is OK. Now, what Russia has been trying to have Japan help industrial development in Russa, similar to Mitsubishi helpng China Puttin etcs have been proposing to Japan, Japan can sanction and shift to South America, Africa, middle East, etc. BTW, Oil, etc are very out of dated energy resource in USA even there are many oil fields in Texas, etc. Nuclear Energy? In many state, what is that? Check Solar Energy Information in Wipipedia. Energy in California and Energy resource in Nevada. Very inexpensive. I don;t know what kind of sanction Japan planned but I wouldn't worry about oil purchase, Iran has been very friendly with Japan for generations, Persia,, Japanese people loved the country. I don't know what knd of sanctions USA will have . What USA haa been buying or selling to Russia?????

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

97% of the people who voted wanted to break away from Ukraine. Since the ethnic Russians total 58% it would appear as if only the ethnic Russians had voted.

As the Tartars and Ukrainians views the referendum as illegal, both groups largely boycotted the vote.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

For all those saying that Japan putting sanctions on Russia will push back any settlement of the Kuril Islands dispute, you are wrong. Putin had no intention of settling this dispute as h had no intention of giving away two smaller islands back to Japan.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

So much for the promotion and definition of democracy. I would call it selective democracy. The one that is expanding like a cancer is the EU.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Well, apparently some things never change. This strategy has been used time and time again by nearly every superpower country in the past, however, we (many of us anyway) hoped we were beyond that now. Russia in the Crimea, China's recent little adventures with its smaller neighbors. If Russia gets away with this, then China may be encouraged (perhaps stimulated is a better word) to do likewise. On the other hand, if this proves too costly (economically) and damaging for the Russians, then other countries with similar desires to expand and grow will do a better job at holding themselves in check.

"It's a land grab!" VP Joe Biden

Simply but effectively put.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Crimea is under occupation of Russian military troops.There was no option to vote for status quo on ballot forms. If you notice, International observers were kicked out of Crimea, and nobody was there to verify attendance and count, except groups, assigned from Kremlin. Ukrainian and foreign journalists were kicked out and equipment destroyed. People who abstained from voting, elderly people are persuaded to vote at home by special groups, going from door to door with boxes….and guess who they had to vote for.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Ukraine was over thrown by a western organized coup because Yanukovych passed on an EU deal and chose Russia instead. This pissed off the Neo-Cons who want to squeeze Russia until they die. This coup and then the new law to ban the Russian language gave Putin the green light to "Get back" the Crimea which was given to Ukraine back in the 50's, along with other provinces. So, it's not like the Crimea has been part of Ukraine for 200 hundred yeas and this vote is not so surprising. Don't blow this out of proportion.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

the referendum as illegal

The referendum is "illegal", but all the rioting and beating and burning that went on to create the environment that led to the referendum .... that was totally legal, right?

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Crimea now,Senkaku tomorrow, South Korea later?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@EthanWilbur

Japan’s Russian cards hardly even had a chance even Ukrainian crisis would have not come to the sight.

All of the evidences suggest that Russians just used Abe’s fragile singleton motive to play for its advantage.(BTW, it worked on Abe until a couple weeks ago ) Those summits between Putin and Abe were merely political shows and decoys to keep Abe’s false hope alive in terms of getting a counterweight against the Chinese regime not to mention so called Japan’s independence from the US.

Certainly, at this point, I actually agree with you that it is all mostly symbolic. It will take a more sustained effort to have a chance to really win the Russians (or anyone) over. However, geopolitical realities say that in truth, Russia cannot really be happy with China growing stronger and stronger on their Far East border and a counterweight would be welcome. The problem is that Japan cannot make a sustained effort on this ground.

For Japan, my advice would be that given that the US and Japan alliance has worked since the war ended although there were some bumps here and there, It would be foolish to abandon the practice by ignoring the verification of Japan’s 69 years of peace and prosperity based on cooperation and support between thsoe two close allies.

Granted, because its geographic location and historical background, Japan faces more challenges than other countries in the worlds when coping with three superpowers in a close range, but with a vision and wisdom, plus a true leader, not only Japan can survive, but also shine.

Vision and wisdom, EthanWilbur, generally involves working with geopolitical realities, not ignoring them in favor of tactical actions halfway around the world. No one is advocating the Japanese abandon the US alliance ... but it is really saying a lot about the nature of an alliance if one of the countries in fact cannot refuse an act that would harm its long term interests because to refuse would be to slightly decrease a tactical advantage for the other party.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Russia is about the the only power player who can say " Samodostatoshnost" (we will only rely on our own councel) After a pullback of 25 years here is the limit. The pain will be shared by all.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

It seems russian leadership is mostly laughing at the west and Japans sanctions. Well I guess we are heading for a political regression globally. Welcome back cold war. Old US of A has now got their archenemy back and as it seems, in really good spirit too. If the republicans can muster a reasonable candidate they will use the democrats to wipe the floor in the next presidential election. Then of course the arms race will reach new levels on the sad path to complete destruction. Not what I was hoping for...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

It seems russian leadership is mostly laughing at the west and Japans sanctions. Well I guess we are heading for a political regression globally. Welcome back cold war. Old US of A has now got their archenemy back and as it seems, in really good spirit too. If the republicans can muster a reasonable candidate they will use the democrats to wipe the floor in the next presidential election. Then of course the arms race will reach new levels on the sad path to complete destruction. Not what I was hoping for...

I don't mind the US getting an archenemy so much, but let's make it the nation that's the real threat, not a country trying to retain a small buffer for itself...

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@tmarie

"I don't for the life of me understand why Obama and the like are getting their knickers in a knot over this. If they want to seperate and join Russia, that is not "our" business."

It looks like a crazy move, doesn't it? On the surface. You must understand that because of Gorbachev and the liberals that came to power in Russia in 1991, Russia has been under the de-facto rule of the U.S. for all these years since. The Russian legal system and the administration of the country have been under "supervision" of U.S. "advisors", who have a higher diplomatic status even than diplomats. It means they can't be touched, it means they can do anything they want within the country and nobody can harm them or prosecute them, they have full U.S. backing. The situation is the same in the E.U. as well, by the way.

The problem is that these U.S.-sponsored liberal "advisors" have been dismantling the country, slowly but surely. Setting up anti-Russian laws, closing down Russian academies and institutions, dismantling Russian education and healthcare, to name but a few. They've been dictating Russian diplomacy and have slapped Russia on the wrist with a heavy iron rod every time they had tried to defend their interests. Russian impotence in the Yugoslavia and later the Kosovo question, in the Iraq invasion or in the bombinbs of Lybia, all this is the result of outside control.

And it seems that finally Putin felt sure enough in himself to throw the gauntlet and rip Russia away from this outside control. THIS is the issue, and THIS is why the West (i.e. U.S.) is up in arms. Russia has been a U.S. slave for 23 years, and suddenly the slave tries to break the shackles.

And because post-war Europe and Japan are suffering from the same outside control, they have no choice but to follow in American lead.

We'll see whether Putin has the strength of will and the inside support to fight this battle, I personally think there's no turning back to him now at this stage. If he falters and bows down before the U.S., he will lose any and all political value that he has tried to gather over these many years. Russians will treat him as a traitor, and rightly so. The only choice for him is to go on and hope that the support of the nation will be strong enough for him to finally break Russia free from bonds. We'll see.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

@Jay WilsonMAR. 19, 2014 - 03:47AM JST For all those saying that Japan putting sanctions on Russia will push back any settlement of the Kuril Islands dispute,

you are wrong. Putin had no intention of settling this dispute as h had no intention of giving away two smaller islands back to Japan.

;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;;

??????????

First group is saying "push back any settlement

you are saying he had no intention of -------------------- Same opinion

BTW, Kuril (Chishima Retto) is not two islands. Japan named Chishima (Thousand Islands) be cause many islands in Northern Kuril, Central Kuril and Southern Kuril. (Minami Chishima, Chubu Chishimam Minami Chishima). Retto (long line of islands) No, not two islands. first group you mentioned know that. I ask you question, Why you say two islands? What islands do you mean???

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I do not like Abe BUT I applaud his decision action in support of the US and the EU position.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Sorry Kazuaki I don't get your point. My point was that Russian representatives are humiliating Obama in public and that will become political ammo in the next election. China more or less supports Russian action and the west will stick together against the Russian occupation, ergo a much more chilling political climate, possibly a "new" cold war. Zaldaus - yeah I agree, the so called US sponsored advisers are quite common in many countries, and so are Chinese, Russians and other advisers from many countries. Its just business as usual. If there is something special about it I guess the US sponsored advisers are more efficient at influencing natives and media.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Absolutely wrong decision. Japan knows the history and can easily deduce the right of Russia to accept the completely democratic decision of the Crimean to rejoin what was always their country. When Russian Dictator (Ukrainian and married to Ukrainian) Khrushchev decided to make one man decision and take a Russian Crimea and annex it to Ukraine no one in the west complained. Now that the NATO is losing the prime piece of real-estate they where almost sure to get everyone is screaming their bad breath all over the place. Japan should stop brown nosing the evil empires and should do what Japan is best on doing and that is conquer the markets with the serious and honest business and products the people all over the world like. Keep clean of political lies and games and keep the respect you already have. Who knows maybe a good time to hear the Russian part of the story and in a humble Japanese manner remind them of your need for some sort of sharing of the four disputed island up north.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Why can't Japan make an independent decision? Japan can not think for itself!

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

zvonko Absolutely wrong decision. Japan knows the history and can easily deduce the right of Russia to accept the completely democratic decision of the Crimean to rejoin what was always their country. When Russian Dictator (Ukrainian and married to Ukrainian) Khrushchev decided to make one man decision and take a Russian Crimea and annex it to Ukraine no one in the west complained. Now that the NATO is losing the prime piece of real-estate they where almost sure to get everyone is screaming their bad breath all over the place. Japan should stop brown nosing the evil empires and should do what Japan is best on doing and that is conquer the markets with the serious and honest business and products the people all over the world like. Keep clean of political lies and games and keep the respect you already have. Who knows maybe a good time to hear the Russian part of the story and in a humble Japanese manner remind them of your need for some sort of sharing of the four disputed island up north.

Are you serious? Putin has never had ANY intention of returning the stolen Northern Territories back to Japan

1 ( +1 / -0 )

People, I live in Russia and I can assure you that no one in Crimea was forced to vote in referendum. It's a pity how western society was brainwashed by it's media. Let's remember the reason USA invaded Iraq. First it was chemical weapons (as we all know there wasn't any), so they changed it to democracy (what is democracy in a country where three main ethnicities Shiahs, Sunnies and Kurds live) results we all see - every week there are terracts, thousands of innocent people die. But they all free now. What a democracy! Same issue in Libiya and Syria. In all these issues only Russia insisted on diplomatic solution. But nobody listened. The only truth was that USA said. The same story today. It is USA which spent 3 billion $ for preparation of this coup d'état. Not Russia started it. And those who came to power in Ukraine now aren't democrats at all. They use same slogans as German fascists used. They closed any independent media sources. Not only Russians but Jewish as well are persecuted by fascists. And you call it democracy? And let's imagine what happens if Texas wants to have a referendum on sovereignty? Or maybe Corsicans, or Basques? Will it be in democratic way? For all who don't know - those who fight for independence there are called .... Terrorists:) So, that's how it is. Thanks for attention.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I'm just wondering what would happen if the situation concerned the Kourile Islands ? Let's just say that one day, there is a referendum and 97% of the people wanted the Islands to be returned to Japan but he US and the EU said "No way ! They rightfully belong to Russia !" I believe "Abé-chan" would be rather upset and would say ! "It's none of your business !"

0 ( +1 / -1 )

There is one little difference between Crimea and Kouriles - there is no Japanese population in those islands. Actually there are only military bases. And let's don't forget that Japan lost the war which Japan started itself. So how it was mentioned in ABBA's song: "the winner takes it all, the looser standing small...". And don't forget what happened to Germany or to Korea. They were divided by coalition forces on two pieces as we all know. So Japan was lucky not to pursue their faith. There is a funny anecdote in Russia on situation in Crimea. Everybody knows Alina Kabayeva i guess? So she's now Putin's girlfriend. It's a secret actually, but everyone in Russia knows it. So, here is the anecdote: "Kabayeva told her friend that she wanted Cream for present. And now she doesn't know how to say that she needs Kalaska (Коляска means pram or stroller in Russian)":) Actually Alaska was part of Russian Empire and was sold to USA in 18 century. Crimea was also part of Russian Empire by the way.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Momokosan

I was only trying to underline the fact that Abé desperately WANTS the Kouriles but if/when he doesn't get them he's going to be very upset... I'm also wondering how the Crimean question concerns the "International Community"?

According to the latest news (Russian television) other parts of Ukraine (Donetsk, Dniepropetrovsk, etc...) are holding demonstrations. They are not asking to be re-attached to Russia but for the return of Ianoukovitch, their democratic president who was overthrown by extreme rightists. I wonder if the International Community will try to intercede there too ?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Clearly Putin has broken International Law. There was no vote in Crimea. Russia has violated the sovereignty of Ukraine. After George W. Bush's Wars of private profit, based on lies crafted by Dick Cheney, Putin can happily tell the whole world to go hang. Send the Sochi Olympic medals back to the despicable dictator Vladimir V. Putin.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

@FightingViking I guess nobody cares wether Abe is very upset or not. It concerns future PMs of Japan as well. Nothing will change this issue,except war. Want to see reaction of community, watch this on Youtube - Confusing Question of the Day - Crimea, Multiverse, Lululemon. They don't care until americans start losing their troops there. Eastern Ukrainians in Donetsk and Kharkiv regions want Yanukovitch back because they want little problems than big ones. I think everyone have forgotten that the new power in Kiev came to power with Molotoffs cocktails not elections. What will happen if that happens in Japan or USA or Germany?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

@Momokosan

I guess nobody cares wether Abe is very upset or not. It concerns future PMs of Japan as well. Nothing will change this issue,except war.

That's exactly what I'm afraid of...

1 ( +1 / -0 )

toshiko ?????????? First group is saying "push back any settlement * you are saying he had no intention of -------------------- Same opinion

BTW, Kuril (Chishima Retto) is not two islands. Japan named Chishima (Thousand Islands) be cause many islands in Northern Kuril, Central Kuril and Southern Kuril. (Minami Chishima, Chubu Chishimam Minami Chishima). Retto (long line of islands) No, not two islands. first group you mentioned know that. I ask you question, Why you say two islands? What islands do you mean???*

The two smaller islands I was referring to are Habomai and Shikotan.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Jay Wilson: Habomai and Shikotan should be back to Japan as it is very close to Hokkaido. Instead of meddling Kremlin, Japan should negotiate with Russia. Both are island groups. I think more about Kuril than soemwhere I have to look at an atlas and old magazines to refresh East and West Europe got out from Russia.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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