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HOME  > Past issues  > 2018 October 10 - 16  > JCP publishes five-point proposal to create a peaceful Japan making best use of pacifist Constitution
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2018 October 10 - 16 [JCP]

JCP publishes five-point proposal to create a peaceful Japan making best use of pacifist Constitution

October 15, 2018

The Japanese Communist Party on October 13 and 14 held its 5th Central Committee Plenum at the JCP head office in Tokyo. In the two-day assembly, the JCP published a five-point urgent proposal calling for creating a Japan which makes the best use of the pacifist Constitution.

First, the JCP in its proposal pointed out the need to abolish the national security-related legislation (= war laws), the State Secret Protection Law, the anti-conspiracy law as well as other unconstitutional laws and to restore constitutionalism and democracy in Japan.

The national security-related legislation has altered the mandate of Japan’s Self-Defense Forces.

For example, new duties involving the use of arms, such as “rush to rescue” assignments (kaketsuke-keigo), were imposed on SDF units participating in the UN PKO mission in South Sudan in 2016. Maritime SDF ships were engaged in missions to protect and refuel U.S. military vessels in 2017. Japan-U.S. joint military drills have escalated both in quality and quantity. The UN mission-centric SDF dispatch policy has been changed to one allowing the SDF to be sent to regions such as the South China Sea and the Sinai Peninsula without any relation to UN PKO missions. The revocation of the war laws is a pressing task.

Secondly, the JCP proposes that the government shift to disarmament from the current huge arms buildup policy.

The Defense Ministry’s budget request for FY2019 exceeds 5.5 trillion yen. The reason for this huge cost is that the request includes the cost of purchasing F35 stealth fighters, Ospreys, unmanned surveillance aircraft, long-range cruise missiles, and other state-of-the-art weapons systems which depart from the exclusively defense-oriented principle. The budgetary request also reflects the cost of buying huge quantities of U.S.-made weapons under the pressure exerted by U.S. President Trump. The use of taxpayers’ money for these purposes should be cancelled. Furthermore, the “sympathy budget” for the U.S. military in Japan, which is one of the most extraordinary financial arrangements in the world, should be eliminated.

Thirdly, the JCP proposal demands that the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) which gives special judicial privileges to the U.S forces in Japan be fundamentally revised.

The special privileges under the SOFA enable the U.S. military to deploy its troops anywhere across Japan without limitation and conduct military training exercises freely in disregard of Japan’s domestic laws.

In July this year, the National Governors’ Association unanimously adopted a proposal calling for a drastic amendment to the SOFA. In the proposal, the NGA urges that Japan’s aviation law, environmental law, and other regulations be applied in principle to the U.S. military in Japan. The proposal also demands that when an incident or an accident involving the U.S. military occurs, municipal government officials be allowed to enter the site in question in a quick and smooth manner. These are demands expected from an independent country.

The forth proposal is to establish a multinational security mechanism for peace and stability in Northeast Asia.

The JCP in 2014 in its 26th Congress proposed an initiative to create a framework for peace and cooperation in Northeast Asia. The core of this proposal is to have a treaty of amity and cooperation (TAC) concluded on a regional scale and to require TAC member countries to resolve conflicts through peaceful dialogue. This direction was already agreed upon in the 2005 Six-Party Talks Joint Statement and the 2011 Bali Declaration of the East Asia Summit by countries concerned. Regarding the ongoing peace process on the Korean Peninsula, a success of this process will contribute to realizing the JCP proposed initiative. The JCP will continue to work hard to achieve this.

The fifth proposal is to push the Japanese government to sign and ratify the UN treaty prohibiting nuclear weapons.

One year has passed since the antinuke UN treaty was adopted. So far, the treaty has been signed by 69 countries and ratified by 19 of the 69 countries. In California which is the largest state in the U.S. with a population of 40 million, the state assembly adopted a resolution in support of the UN treaty. Nuclear weapon states are aware of the change occurring. In Japan, more than 320 municipalities have adopted statements calling on the national government to sign and ratify the treaty. The government of Japan, the only nation in the world to have experienced an atomic attack, should not turn its back on this trend. If the present government refuses to sign the UN convention, it should be replaced with a pro-UN treaty government through joint efforts between the JCP and the general public.
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