John Manning writes:

The latest move of the puppet Koizumi cabinet of Japan is to push for contingency laws which will make criminals of any Japanese refusing to support wars, which will mean any war the United States starts, since the government has bound itself to take part.

This could mean the planned attack on Iraq, since U.S. planes from Japan were used in past bombing of Iraq under the "areas surrounding Japan clause".

All these laws are in flagrant violation of the democratic Peace Constitution, adopted at the end of WW II. The U.S., which at the war's end urged democracy on Japan, is now promoting and forcing the war moves.

The Japan Press web page here reports Akahata's April 3 editorial.

Wartime laws make criminals out of citizens refusing to cooperate with war: Akahata editorial, April 3 (excerpts)



In an attempt to oblige people to cooperate with the government in the event of wars, the Koizumi Cabinet will submit contingency bills to the Diet to get it railroaded through the current Diet session which ends in July.



An outline on the government bills calls for providing "penalty regulations against those who disobey government orders to secure materials." It sets forth revising the Self Defense Forces Law Article 103 to allow the government to expropriate lands, housing, and other property.



These bills indicate that people will be forced to cooperate, under the threats of penalty, in wars if the new war laws being prepared by the Koizumi Cabinet are enacted.



Bills to the benefit of U.S. wars



Enacting new contingency laws means establishing a new system that will allow the government to punish uncooperative people as criminals. In this sense, the new laws are the same kind as the National General Mobilization Law enacted during WWII which mobilized the public to the wars of aggression under the threat that those who refuse to cooperate will be punished by laws, including hard labor.



The government outline also sets out measures to expropriate lands and remove housing and other facilities in the army's way even without a government decree.



This means that once the government officially orders the SDF units to be on stand-by for defense operation, the government is allowed to unilaterally use private lands without informing it to the parties concerned.



The prime minister is assigned to give the order.



Stating that the prime minister is entitled to command local governments, new wartime laws are designed to urge local governments to cooperate in wars.



All these definitions entirely contradict the Constitution, which, by stipulating that Japan's government forever renounces war, guarantees public properties, and makes much of local autonomy, and is designed to keep the government from going to war.



By completely revising the current constitutional state structure and by reneging on citizens' basic rights and local autonomy, the Koizumi Cabinet intends to transform Japan with the Constitution into a nation qualified to launch war. And the war is a U.S. war.



Defense Agency Director General Nakatani Gen suggested in the Diet that there is a great possibility for Japan to face an emergency when the situation in areas surrounding Japan is left unchecked. By this, he meant that in the event of an armed attack against Japan's Self-Defense Forces ships and aircraft engaging in rear-area support for the U.S. Forces (operating in Asia), the Japanese government will have to acknowledge the situation as an emergency, a situation of Japan being under attack from outside forces.



Contrary to the government explanation that enacting emergency laws will help Japan be prepared for possible armed attacks, what new wartime laws are going to deal with, by authorizing the prime minister to mobilize SDF units by invoking these laws to let Japan be incorporated into U.S.-led wars, are U.S. emergencies in Asia.



Actually, SDF units are being deployed to take part in U.S. retaliatory wars against the September terrorist attacks. It also came to light that under the new Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation Guidelines, defense officials of both countries have already signed agreements on Mutual Cooperation Planning.



In essence, the Koizumi Cabinet is scheming to establish a war-prepared state that will enable Japan to take part in U.S. wars in Asia.



Let's mobilize people's pro-peace power!



Since the 1970s, every time successive Liberal Democratic Party governments attempted to enact emergency legislation, the Japanese people blocked it, maintaining that such legislation is incompatible with the Constitution.



Also, it is quite ineffective for the government to use the argument that 'some country is going to invade Japan.'



Let's gather the strength of people demanding peace, so that the Koizumi Cabinet's scheme to enact wartime laws be blocked.








































Japan's parliament has just voted (April 12) unanimously a resolution calling for a ceasefire in Palestine with withdrawal of Israeli troops from Palestinian towns.