Thursday, November 23, 2006


if Japan's rightwingers could stop fulminating, and start thinking, they would discover a neat answer to many of their gripes. Under common international practice, Japan today would be quite entitled to begin to challenge some of the 1951 San Francisco Treaty obligations imposed on it during its period of weakness and occupation more than half a century ago. This would greatly increase the legality of its territorial claims.

And challenging the "war criminal" Article 11 of the treaty would also do much to end the rightwing trauma over Yasukuni and war guilt -- a point noted by some on the more intelligent right such as former trade minister Hiranuma Takeo. Provided the right admitted that there were war atrocities (something it still tries to deny), while noting also the times when Japan's wartime authorities behaved well -- for example by building schools and infrastructure in occupied or colonized territories -- they would do much to improve Asian respect and understanding for Japan.

Australia's former colony of Papua New Guinea provides a good example of this dichotomy. The eastern districts are still bitterly anti-Japan, because of the cruel massacres carried out there by the Kempeitai and the Japanese Army. The western districts are still strongly pro-Japan. They were administered by the Japanese Navy, which built the famous primary school in Wewak from which a generation of PNG leaders, including prime minister Michael Somare, were graduated.Japan focus

I think his argument that Japan's hard line policy against North Korea is not effective is weak. It was the family of the abducted who demanded harder policy on North Korea, and they took this position out of the desperate dead end situation.
But his view of policy for Japan to take is pragmatical. I think he has
something the conservative who put the national interest in the first place should listen to .
BTW American blogger/Riding Sun criticized Clark before. It was an interesting article.

No comments: