Last updated at: (Beijing Time) Friday, June 07, 2002
Speech Contradictory to Japan's Promise: Commentary
A Japanese official said in meeting on May 31: Theoretically speaking, Japan is able to possess nuclear weapons, adding that "it is not without reason that Japan should possess small type of atom bombs". The "disturbance caused by speech on nuclear weapons" in Japan's political circle has created an uproar from top to bottom over the last few days.
The "disturbance caused by speech on nuclear weapons" in Japan's political circle has created an uproar from top to bottom over the last few days. At first, the person spoke about nuke in the name of "the head of government", then he denied he had made any speech about that Japan should possess nuclear weapons, on the contrary, he accused the news media of making trouble out of nothing. Getting into a temper, the news media simply brought out the truth in its entirety.
Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda said in meeting with correspondents on May 31: Theoretically speaking, Japan is able to possess nuclear weapons, adding that "it is not without reason that Japan should possess small type of atom bombs".
On the same day, when he had an informal meeting with correspondents, he said, "Recently plan has been made to revise the constitution, if the international situation (changes), and the nationals deem it necessary to possess (nuke), 'the three non-nuclear principles' may also be changed." The news media reported the contents of his remarks made to correspondents in accordance with usual practice in the name of the "head of government" or "the government side".
After attending the opening ceremony for the World Cup Football Match held in Seoul on May 31, Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi reiterated while answering reporters' related questions, "My cabinet does not change the 'three non-nuclear principles'."
On June 1, when distributing a copy of "the speech by the head of government", Yasuo Fukuda said, my cabinet has no idea to change the "three non-nuclear principles", nor are we probing into it as a topic for the future.
On June 3, while meeting with correspondents, Fukuda admitted, the so-called "head of government" is he himself. That same day, Japanese Foreign Minister Yoriko Kawaguchi indicated that there was nothing wrong in what Fukuda said about Japan's possession of nuclear weapons.
Fukuda's speech has aroused strong resentment in Japan. In 1967, the Japanese government formally announced the "three non-nuclear principles", i.e., "not possessing, not making and not shipping in" nuclear weapons, which was approved to become "national affair" by the House of Representatives in 1971. Thereafter, all previous Japanese governments have regarded the "three non-nuclear principles" as the basic national policy.
It is only natural that Fukuda, as a current cabinet member, is severely criticized by Japanese people in and out of government for his rash talks. A representative of the Association for the group of victims of the atom bomb explosion in Hiroshima said that considered whether from the angle of the victims or of the peace of humanity, Fukuda's remarks were intolerable
In the opinion of the head of the Memorial Hall of the Hiroshima Atom Bomb Explosion, if it fails to uphold the "three non-nuclear principles", how can Japan, as the only country once suffered nuclear blast disaster, appeal to the world for the prohibition of nuclear weapons?
Fukuda's speech has also aroused strong repercussion internationally. Japan's close Asian neighbors and even the entire international community have expressed deep concerns about this. Today, when peace and development have become the mainstream of the times and international nuclear disarmament has made incessant headway, Fukuda's "speech on nuke possession" not only shows his ignorance of the times, but also is an open breach of the Japanese government's long-standing promise, so it causes the peace-loving people to feel worried and disturbed. In terms of the question of world nuclear disarmament, Fukuda's speech is bound to weaken Japan's right to speak and its stringency in this field.
Fukuda's speech has increased the international community's doubts and misgivings about Japan's development of nuclear arms. Not long ago, a Japan's party chief declared in his speech: "Japan has the ability to make nuclear weapons". In his non-public speech made in mid-May, ABE Shinzo, a Japanese deputy chief cabinet secretary, said, "There is no problem with Japan to possess a small type of atom bombs."
Judging from the series of actions, from these dangerous speeches, to Japan's active participation in sending troops overseas in recent years, the "emergency legislation related bill" passed by the cabinet and its preparation to revise the constitution, etc., people have reason to believe that Fukuda's "speech on nuclear possession was given out of "sincerity", while his subsequent "correction" speech seemed like "insincerity" in pretending to do something.
"One can't stand erect without faith" are the words always on the lips of Japanese politicians. If the words "national affair" seriously promised by a country are only made half-hearted, or if the "national affair" is even said as one thing, but means another thing, then how can the country win the confidence of the world people? And how can she stand unperturbed in the galaxy of nations?