Panel report calls for overseas deployment of SDF in the name of 'self-defense': JCP Shii

Commenting on the report on national defense published on the previous day by the prime minister's advisory panel, Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo stated, "It is tantamount to making Japan a military power by transforming the Self-Defense Forces into "overseas deployment forces." He made this statement at a press conference in the Diet Building on October 5.

The report in question was compiled by the Council on Security and Defense Capabilities, an advisory panel for Prime Minister Koizumi Jun'ichiro.

Shii warned, "The government is going to drastically reorganize the SDF so that they may be allowed to intervene in disputes throughout the world in the name of 'self-defense'."

Shii pointed out that the report used the logic that it is necessary not only to defend Japan itself, but to defend Japanese nationals and businesses abroad against "threats in faraway regions."

Recalling the history of the Japanese war of aggression against China started in Northeast China (Manchuria) by claiming that the region is "Japan's life line" and expanded into the Pacific War under the slogan "Survival of the nation through self-defense," Shii said, "We must condemn the lack of reflection on the past wars that had been escalated by unlimitedly broadening the interpretation of "self-defense".

Secondly, the report called for the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty to take on a global role in conjunction with the transformation of the SDF into "overseas deployment forces."

Concerning the proposal of the report to formulate a new "Japan-U.S. joint security declaration" and renew the 1997 "Guidelines for Japan-U.S. defense cooperation," Shii stated:

"While the 1996 'Japan-U.S. joint security declaration' and the 1997 'Guidelines for Japan-U.S. defense cooperation' were designed to expand the coverage of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty setup from the 'Far East' to the 'Asia-Pacific region,' the report is intended to expand it to both hemispheres, where the SDF in unity with U.S. forces will intervene in regional conflicts."

Thirdly, concerning the right of collective self-defense, which the report referred to, Shii pointed out that the concept is proposed in the context that U.S. and Japanese forces carry out military operations worldwide.

Referring to Prime Minister Koizumi's call for a constitutional revision and for Japan to exercise the right of collective self-defense under the pretext of "the need to defend Japan," he pointed out that the report confirmed that the aim of the constitutional revision has nothing to do with "defending Japan". The report asserts that it is designed to allow Japan to take part in military interventions throughout the world, Shii said.

Fourth, Shii took up the report's proposal to review the three government principles banning arms exports, implying that it is certain major weapons export countries that have aggravated military conflicts.

Pointing out that Japan under Article 9 of the Constitution has maintained the three principles and garnered international trust for this, Shii emphasized that it cannot be allowed to throw away such vital principles for peace. (end)

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