JCP Shii speaks on Japan-U.S. military alliance increasing its aggressive nature

Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo on June 17 made a speech on the "present stage of the Japan-U.S. military alliance increasing its aggressive nature" at the 26th annual general meeting of the National Association for a Peaceful, Democratic and Progressive Japan (Kakushinkon) at its 25th anniversary gathering.

Japan-U.S. military alliance has increased its aggressive nature in three stages

Reviewing the past 46 years since the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty was revised in 1960, Shii pointed out that the Japan-U.S. military alliance has undergone three stages to increase its aggressive nature.

Shii said:

Full-fledged bilateral joint military operations started

"The first stage was marked by the 1978 'Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation' for the U.S. and Japanese forces to begin to formulate plans for joint military operations.

These 1978 guidelines provided that Japan and the United States will jointly carry out activities 'if there is a perceived danger of attack on Japan,' which even the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty does not stipulate. Although the treaty only provides that Japan will allow U.S. forces in Japan to use its 'facilities and areas in Japan' ostensibly to maintain 'international peace and security in the Far East,' the 'guidelines' provide that Japan and the U.S. will cooperate militarily in case that 'developments in the Far East will affect the security of Japan.' The new Guidelines thus actually infringed on the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty in two ways, leading to a de facto revision of the treaty.

Since then, the number of days of yearly Japan-U.S. joint exercises increased from 30 in 1978 to 331 in 2004. The term 'Japan-U.S. alliance' began to be used in Japan's diplomatic documents following the 1981 Japan-U.S. summit in which Japan agreed to share the defense of the Western Pacific."

Japan-U.S. military alliance extended to cover 'Asia-Pacific region'

"The second stage of strengthening the Japan-U.S. military alliance for aggression was carried out through arrangements in the 1996 Japan-U.S. Joint Declaration on Security, the 1997 Guidelines for Japan-U.S. Defense Cooperation, and the Law to deal with 'Situations in Areas Surrounding Japan' of 1999.

At this stage, the Japan-U.S. military alliance suddenly began to be applied to the whole of the 'Asia-Pacific' region. The JCP called for a major struggle in opposition to the 1999 Law to deal with 'Situations in Areas Surrounding Japan,' a 'war law' aimed at automatically involving Japan in U.S. preemptive wars abroad.

The 'war law' was based, though narrowly, on the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty."

A Japan-U.S. alliance taking on global roles

"The third stage began in 2001 when the government dispatched Maritime Self-Defense Force ships to the Indian Ocean under the Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law, followed by the SDF dispatch to Iraq under the 2003 Special Measures Laws on 'Humanitarian and Reconstruction Assistance in Iraq' as well as a series of changes associated with ongoing 'U.S. military transformation and realignment.'

These two Special Measures laws of 2001 and 2003 have no reference to 'the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty.' Instead, Prime Minister Koizumi Jun'ichiro began to use the term 'Japan-U.S. alliance.' Instead of formulating treaty obligations and rights for the military alliance, these laws made it possible for the SDF to go any place in the world to join with U.S. forces in the name of the 'Japan-U.S. military alliance.'

In the upcoming Japan-U.S. summit in late June, Koizumi and Bush are expected to issue a joint statement to declare the global significance of the Japan-U.S. military alliance.

The extraordinariness of Japan's subservience to the U.S. has come to this degree."

Three points at issue in the latest stage of the Japan-U.S. military alliance

Shii spoke about three elements of the Japan-U.S. military alliance that takes on global roles as follows:

"First, Japan and the United States will share 'common strategic objectives' for the world and carry out joint military actions whenever the U.S. launches a preemptive attack any place in the world.

Second, in order to implement their 'common strategic objectives,' the U.S. forces and Japan's Self-Defense Forces will be integrated for joint operations overseas.

Third, the Japan-U.S. alliance will drastically strengthen the functions of U.S. bases in Japan, including the construction of a new Marine Corps air base in Okinawa, as forward-deployed U.S. bases serving U.S. preemptive wars."

Japan's subservience to U.S. global strategy is very dangerous in that Japan will be forced to fight 'long wars'

On the question, "What is the U.S. global strategy under which the third stage of strengthening of the Japan-U.S. military alliance is underway?" Shii said that there are two things that are emphasized in the President Bush's State of the Union address in 2002 and the 2006 Quadrennial Defense Review as follows:

"One is recognition that the United States is involved in a 'long war' and the other is the need to involve allies in this war.

Despite the serious setbacks and failures in the war of aggression against Iraq, the United States has no intention to change its hegemonic and imperialist world strategy. On the contrary, regarding the fact that the U.S. can't fight the 'long war' alone, the United States argues that it takes allies to wage the war."

Emphasizing that the third stage of strengthening the Japan-U.S. alliance began in the context of this U.S. policy, Shii criticized the Japanese government for pushing Japan to take part in U.S. global long wars in disregard of the war-renouncing Japanese Constitution.

Contradictions between the Japan-U.S. military alliance and the public and increasing public opposition

"In the third stage," Shii said, "Contradictions between the Japan-U.S. military alliance and the public have grown to an extreme, and a wide range of people are calling for the status quo to be changed."

Shii referred to: (1) the struggle against the adverse revision of the Constitution and the Fundamental Law of Education; (2) opposition to the plan to realign U.S. forces in Japan; and (3) resistance to U.S. attempt to interfere with the Japanese economy.

He went on to say: "More than 5,000 Article 9 associations have been established across the nation, calling for opposition to an adverse revision of the Constitution as well as to the remaking of the Japan-U.S. alliance into a more aggressive one. The struggle against the revision of the education law which is inseparable from the constitutional revision scheme, has led to increased cooperation among unions of various national affiliations.

Opposition to the U.S. military realignment plan in Japan is strongly making advances despite ups and downs."

Let's make anti-Security Treaty force the real majority

Finally, Shii called for efforts to make the anti-Japan-U.S. Security Treaty opinion into the majority. To achieve this goal, Shii said, "The JCP as a political party and Kakushinkon as the grassroots-based united front movement must play a greater role."
- Akahata, June 18, 2006