politics

Q&A: The ruckus over Japan's military legislation

20 Comments
By MARI YAMAGUCHI

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Abe is like: "Don't let the door hit ya on your way out"

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

I am not against Japan being able to collectively defend allies, if that is what it wants to do, but it is not worth gutting the constitution for. That is the slippery slope to totalitarianism.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Well, in general an accurate, well-balanced article – slightly slanted to the left, but not much.

What it does do is clearly outline the very restrictive set of instances where Japan can engage in collective self-defense or support UN operations under this legislation – this clearly shows that all those folks in the anti-US crowd who consistently misrepresented the legislation as “forcing Japan to participate in US wars” were wildly exaggerating.

The main thing this legislation does is add resiliency to the US-Japan Security Alliance – imagine what the American public would think if nKorea launched a missile capable of hitting Guam, Hawaii or the West Coast, with Japan being able to accurately target and engage it, but did nothing since it just flew over, but was not “aimed” at Japan. Or if a US ship came under submarine attack just outside Japanese waters, and a Japanese ship was nearby but did nothing to stop the attack. The alliance would be in clear jeopardy.

That being said, I suggest the Japanese people be very sensitive and alert to any attempt by the far-right wing crowd (Tamogami, Ishihara, et al.) to try to hijack prudent changes in security legislation to broaden Japan’s ability to use force and further their dream of a reemergence of a 21st century Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere…………..

1 ( +5 / -4 )

I will vote communist next election. I hope everyone else does too.

3 ( +9 / -6 )

Abe has said that Japan would not send troops into battle overseas. He and other backers of the legislation argue that the world has changed, and in the face of potential threats such as China and North Korea, Japan needs to enhance its deterrence to preserve its peace and prosperity. It’s a fundamental divide over how best to keep Japan safe for future generations.

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Are Japanese automakers ready to their self driving cars?

Japan has robotic technology advanced. Is his why they don't need troops oversea?

At electronic show in Vegas, Japanese makers showed various robotic machines. One I did not like was receptionist that spoke better Japanese than I doi Others did not look like people. .

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

The issue here is less the possible future deployment of Japanese military personnel abroad, than the imperious manner in which unconstitutional legislation was forcibly introduced - despite the vocal opposition of more than half the electorate. While it has often been said that the phrase "Japanese democracy" is an oxymoron, The Abe government has just proven it.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I agree with lincolnman - collective defense is important. How many people know that Japanese troops have been operating in South Sudan for the past few years? Although they are non-combatants - the troops are engineers, and usually I saw them building roads - given the high insecurity in South Sudan, they can protect themselves - the troops are armed. But they cannot protect other UNMISS troops or civilians! In other words, if JSDF personnel in South Sudan see civilians being killed - including, by the way, Japanese citizens who work there - they cannot use deadly force to stop it. That is just plain crazy.

I understand the law is unconstitutional. And for that reason alone I disagree with the law - and the way the government forced it on people. So I think people should and must protest this. But I think also the constitution needs to be changed. If the U.S. can have amendments to their constitution, why can't Japan? I understand the fear of the right-wingers and militanism, but I think a careful amendment should still be possible.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

As soon as Japanese forces get involved in a conflict (which Abe wants) then Japan will be at war! It's as simple as that....

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Here's a point not many people talk about. Lets for the sake of it, says everything passes the diet and there is so called collective self-defense and the JSDF is allowed to do the items mentioned.

The SDF itself is a civil service job, technically not a military one, one can resign, there is no military court of justice like the US military or other militaries have. In addition, military service or registration for military service is not mandatory in Japan and I doubt it will ever be. There is no major incentives to joining the SDF as there might be found in the US. The SDF would still be pretty much limited in it's operations due to manpower shortage and the more outrage, fewer people are less likely to join the SDF.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@bsfge: It is not mandatory in USA. My four daughters have never served in military in USA They were born in earlu 60's.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Japan needs to remember the militant past and the wages of aggression. Japan should not repeat the mistakes of the past. The Republic of Korea, the United States of America and the others will just have to learn to defend themselves. Abe wants Japan to go down the road that will lead to Japans destruction.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Opponents of the bills say the conditions are overly vague, giving future governments leeway to interpret them as they see fit.

Odd. Usually policy here is very specific and clear. The government of Japan is well known for being direct, to the point and never overtly wordy or lengthy. All of this of course is to make sure not to cause "confusion" for the voters.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@toshiko: It is not mandatory in USA. My four daughters have never served in military in USA They were born in earlu 60's.

I said mandatory military service OR registration for military service. In the USA, all males (citizens and immigrants) between the age of 18-25 must register by LAW for the Selective Service System (SSS), which is a database of all eligible males subject to military conscription (aka "the draft") failure to register could result in jail time and other punishments, such as being ineligible for loans, jobs etc.

The point I am saying is, Japan has no major incentives and many young Japanese are not willing to join the self defense forces. Unlike the USA, where a bulk of those joining the military are looking at the military for the various benefits they offer, especially the educational aspects, enlisted personnel for example if they serve and are honorably discharged are eligible for the GI Bill which essentially the government will pay for their college tuition. Immigrants serving honorable in the military have a fast track to citizenship is another example.

Since there are no major incentives for people to join the SDF, nor any major will to do so, Abe would still be tied with the limited resources in man power the SDF can supply.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Above JT article opened up my eyes on Sec proposal

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Sir; Mr Abe in promoting defence(expansion) is ensuring not only JAPANS defence ga any agressive countries that intend harm toJapan--WILL BE REBUFFED ! We live in violent times--JAPAN must re-arm quickly

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Abe should ask JT to borrow Ms Mari Yamaguchi to train current LDP PR members so that Japanese people will understand why he is pushing Sec Bill. We say Self Defence but ,,,,,

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@ toshiko "Abe should ask JT to borrow Ms Mari Yamaguchi to train current LDP PR members"

Yamaguchi is not with JApan Today, she's with Associated Press.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The term collective self-defense is misleading. USA has been attacking many countries in the world, so defending an aggressor is not self defence. It will also make happy safe, Japan a target for terriorism. Good luck 2020 Olympics...

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

@Educator: Thank you for clarifying. How many times I thanked for my rushing goofy comments now?

Bill will go to upper hose, voting will be delayed and back to lower house, 2/3 and then national voting. news is that 68 % oppose. After sept national election, LDP has only one PM candidate - Abe.

Abe forgot A majority of voters have one or more relatives killed during WW II

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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