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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 September 5 - 11  > PM Abe increases pro-revision remarks in regard to Article 9
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2018 September 5 - 11 [POLITICS]

PM Abe increases pro-revision remarks in regard to Article 9

September 5, 2018
Campaigning for the Liberal Democratic Party presidential election will officially begin on September 7. With this obviously in mind, Prime Minister Abe Shinzo is getting increasingly aggressive with his ambition to revise the pacifist Constitution, particularly Article 9, while showing no remorse over what he has done since he made his comeback nearly six years ago. However, the LDP is unwilling to put a brake on Abe’s moves.

Regarding the presidential election, the LDP released a statement calling for media to report election candidates’ campaigns in a “fair and equitable” manner. Such an act has been criticized as an improper use of ruling party influence on reporting and news gathering. On the other hand, not only pro-Abe daily Sankei Shimbun but also Japan’s major business newspaper Nikkei have run exclusive interviews with PM Abe. In the interviews, Abe put emphasis on his intent to change Article 9.

A majority of the general public feel that there is no need for the Diet to initiate constitutional amendments. PM Abe in the Sankei interview on September 3 described the public opposition as “sabotage”. In the Nikkei interview on September 4, he criticized the Diet for “abdicating its responsibility”. These remarks indicate that he has no awareness that he is in violation of Article 99 which obliges state ministers and parliamentarians to respect and uphold the supreme law.

Abe has expressed his intent to press his party to accelerate its work to draw up a draft constitution in order to introduce the draft to the next session of the Diet. Furthermore, at a meeting of high-ranking Self-Defense Forces officers on September 3, he declared that he will “prepare an environment in which all SDF members can perform their duties with pride”. He seeks to fulfill his long-held dream of changing Article 9 to stipulate explicitly the legal status of the SDF as the highest priority issue on his policy to impose list for the next three-year term as LDP president.

As Prime Minister, Abe has the authority of supreme command of the SDF. Abe in his speech to top-ranking officers of the “organization with force” which is required to keep political neutrality boldly declared his ambition to realize constitutional revision. This is totally controversial and dangerous.

Past related articles:
> Abe spurs his party to submit its draft constitution to Diet this fall [ August 14, 2018]
> Opinion polls: 58% oppose amending Constitution, 70% place high value on Article 9 [May 3, 2018]
> PM Abe at LDP convention expresses his infatuation for initiation of constitutional amendments [ March 26, 2018]
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