Bill on SDF participation in war contradicts efforts to eradicate terrorism
--Akahata editorial, October 6, 2001

Taking advantage of the terrorist attacks on the U.S., the Koizumi
Cabinet has submitted a bill to make the Self-Defense Forces take part in a
U.S. retaliatory war.

The bill allows the SDF to supply the U.S. Forces in combat with
provisions, services, and support and cooperate in such activities as
logistics, transport, repair and maintenance, medical services, and

The bill calls on the SDF to transport weapons and ammunition. It allows
the SDF to use weapons not only in defense of SDF members but also of U.S.
soldiers. The bill imposes no geographical limitations to SDF activities and
allows the SDF to support a U.S. war anywhere, including in foreign

No geographical limitations to SDF deployment

Once SDF units are sent, they will provide the U.S. Forces in combat with
military supplies, transport weapons and ammunition, repair the weapons
impaired during combat, give medical treatment to wounded soldiers, and
counter attacks against the U.S. The SDF will actually take part in a war.

Prime Minister Koizumi Jun'ichiro in parliament said that no geographical
limitations will be applied to SDF operations, indicating that SDF will be
allowed to operate globally.

The prime minister said that there shouldn't be any more insisting that
SDF should stay away from harm's way. It is highly probable that combat will
take place wherever they are sent.

On how the SDF should support the U.S. forces, the bill says that SDF
operations are not in the category of the threat or use of force and that
their operating areas will be where no combat is taking place. Such a
distinction will not hold water in the international community and in actual
warfare. What the SDF is about to be engaged in is exactly the use of force
which the Japanese Constitution prohibits.

The government calls the bill a "counter-terrorism" bill, and includes in
the bill's appellation and objectives such phrases as "prevention and
eradication of terrorism" and "humanitarian measures based on United Nations
resolutions." These phrases are exactly the opposite of what the bill is
intended for.

The bill to support a retaliatory war will further increase the threat of
terrorism and will get the situation mired in a vicious circle of
retaliation and terror.

Terrorist attacks which involve indiscriminate and mass killings of
people, including civilians is a crime against humanity. The international
community must unite to eliminate terrorist organizations. Military
retaliation only helps to split the international community, when
international actions are needed against terrorist attacks. Such retaliatory
actions act against the cause of eliminating terrorism.

That's why it is quite natural for many countries in the United Nations
General Assembly to call for solving the matter "not by military means, but
by pursuing justice."

The government is deceiving the people when it says that the new law is
based on the U.N. resolution.

Neither of the two U.N. Security Council resolutions calls for a U.S.
military retaliation or military support for it.

Far from being 'humanitarian,' retaliatory operations are indeed brutal.

Just look at the Afghan situation where many people are fleeting the
country seeking refugee from imminent U.S. attacks. Once the U.S. Forces
launch a war, it will further aggravate the matter.

By taking full advantage of the terrorist incident, the Koizumi Cabinet
is moving to railroad through the bill in the Diet in one stroke so that
their desire to send SDF units abroad, which has been prevented from being
enacted by public opposition, will be instantly materialized.

Let's defeat the bill and defend the Constitution

Japan's Constitution bans threat by force and use of force. For Japan
with this Constitution to act to prevent and eliminate terrorist actions is
to work with the international community to apprehend the organizers and
supporters of these terrorist acts, bring the perpetrators to justice, and
severely punish them in accordance with international law.

Japan must call on the U.S. to stop its move to launch military
retaliation, and not support a U.S. retaliatory war.

The new law goes against calls for the elimination of terrorist attacks
or for peace. We must defend the Constitution which "resolved that never
again shall we be visited with the horrors of war through the action of
government." The unconstitutional bill must be foiled. (end)