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HOME  > Past issues  > 2009 September 2 - 8  > Tell us what went wrong Akahata ‘Current’ column
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2009 September 2 - 8 [POLITICS]

Tell us what went wrong
Akahata ‘Current’ column

September 3, 2009
The public excitement over the results of the House of Representatives general election still lingers. A major newspaper devoted two full pages to a round-table discussion on the August 30 general election.

A foreign policy critic, who once was an aide to a prime minister, said, “The Liberal Democratic Party is on the verge of collapse.” Most people will agree with the critic when he says that the main feature of this election is that the Liberal Democratic Party suffered a crushing defeat instead of underlining a “victory of the Democratic Party of Japan.”

However, one important question remains unanswered: What went wrong in their policies? The public is not just fed up with the LDP government staying so long in power. People are angry about the hardships they continue to endure despite their struggles. The anger that was building up against LDP-Komei government at last exploded.

Japan’s military alliance with the United States represents a major distortion in LDP-Komei government policies. Akahata on August 31 reported in its general news page that live-fire exercises were held by the Ground Self-Defense Force on the previous day at the Higashi Fuji exercise ground in Shizuoka Prefecture. Forty-four tons of ammunition were consumed in just two-hour drills, costing about 350 million yen.

On the same day, Nippon Television Network broadcast live a 24-hour global charity campaign program, which collected 250 million yen in donations. This puts into perspective the huge amounts of tax revenue that are constantly wasted for unnecessary military expenditures.

The late critic Kato Shuichi once commented on the “sympathy budget” of paying the costs for the stationing of U.S. forces in Japan. “Logically, the United States should pay the rent for the land they lease to build military bases in a foreign country. However, Japan, the landowner, has built the houses and pays the rents to the tenant, the United States.”

A new era, an era of dynamism has just begun. The Japanese Communist Party will take part in the move to correct the political distortions.
- Akahata, September 3, 2009
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