Skip to comments.Abe: Japan's collective defense is limited
Posted on 07/14/2014 3:48:22 PM PDT by robowombat
Abe: Japan's collective defense is limited
Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has stressed the country will only use its right to collective self-defense in limited cases.
Abe spoke at a Lower House committee of the Diet on Monday. It was Abe's first time to speak at the Diet on his Cabinet's approval to change the interpretation of the Constitution to enable Japan to exercise the right to collective self-defense.
Masahiko Koumura, vice president of the governing Liberal Democratic Party, questioned Abe on whether the Cabinet's latest decision will allow Japan to exercise its right to collective self-defense as stipulated in the United Nations Charter.
Abe replied the scope will not be the same as the UN Charter because Japan is limited in what it can do. He stressed the country's right to collective self-defense will be kept to a bare minimum.
Abe also said Japan's traditional interpretation of the war-renouncing Article 9 will not allow the country to resort to the use of force. He said if a situation develops beyond the scope of the government's basic policy, Japan will need to revise its Constitution.
Abe said at a news conference earlier this month that collective self-defense must be exercised with minimum use of force, and restricted to cases in which there are no alternatives.
Article 9 says the Japanese people forever renounce war as the sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as a means of settling international disputes.
If a USN ship was cruising tandem with a Japan MSDF ship and the latter came under attack, the US ship was obligated to come to it’s defense.
But if instead the US ship was attacked, legally speaking the Japanese ship —WITHIN SIGHT of the fighting— was obligated to TAKE NO ACTION.
Ehmmm ..there were objections to this in Japan, but it was touchy, and now they are re-examining all of this.
More and more they are looking realistically at the Chinese threat to the whole region and more understand that in a conflict scenario they might have to act to defend ANOTHER in order to defend themselves.
10 years ago I would have said this “another” would be the USA, however now I think that now may well be a country other than the USA.
Also the prompt willingness of Japan to go their own 100% domestic development route with their stealth fighter prototype indicates to me they have caught a strong whiff of US stagnation and are taking seriously their own defense in an era with a qualitatively different type of USA, i.e. a financially and militarily much weaker USA.
Abe is trying to act like he is walking this back without walking this back. He probably thinks he has to thread the needle because of the LDP loss in the Shiga Prefecture gubernatorial election, though that was a bit like similar elections here, with the LDP getting 44%, opposition getting 46%, and third party getting 10%: the LDP would have won in a straight two-man race.