The Noda government announced late December last year new criteria to relieve Three Principles on Export of Arms and Relevant Technologies which totally ban sales to foreign countries. The public comment was made by Chief Cabinet Secretary Fujimura Osamu. The decision undermines principles of Constitution and lacks debates in the Diet. The government is guiding the nation to be Merchant of Death.
WITHDRAW DECISION TO CONVERT JAPAN TO MERCHANT OF DEATH!
In 1967 in the Cold War era the Sato government made a decision to set forth Three Principles on export of weapons with a major objective to prohibit sales of arms to countries in the former socialist camp. In 1976 under the Miki government a policy was declared as a nation of peace total export ban of arms and technologies to any country much less to the socialist camp.
Changes Made Partially and Specifically
Later in 1983 the Nakasone government's Chief Cabinet Secretary made a statement to relieve the principles partially, allowing an exception of technology transfer to the United States, but rejected joint production efforts.
In 2004 the Koizumi government approved joint commitments with the United States to develop and produce missile defense (MD) system units. The announcement was made in the same way by the then-Chief Cabinet Secretary who added that other relevant items were dealt with separately with the allied partner.
After the new government was formed by Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) in 2009, then-Premier Kan gave a green light to the United States to export missiles developed by the two nations to a third country.
The Noda Administration compiled new comprehensive rules quite different from the partial, specific modifications. It excuses, saying that 'it is necessary to cope with the heightened cost of weapons'. The current decision will lead to joint development and production with 'friendly nations' of arsenal to be used by the Self Defense Forces of Japan.
Chief Cabinet Secretary Fujimura Osamu told publicly after the Security Council of Japan chaired by Premier Noda Yoshihiko had finalized. Major points are (1) to admit export of arms, if it contributes to maintaining peace and promotes international cooperation, (2) to allow nations, including US, which have security cooperation with Japan to develop and produce arms in collaboration and to export them to other allied countries.
A problem lies in 'the criteria' to define contribution to peace and international cooperation. Interpretations vary from one government to another. In other words, the new decision of Noda government is to convert Japan to be an exporter of weapons and not to observe Article Nine of Constitution which stipulates principles of peace. The policy is absolutely unacceptable.
Desires of Business and US
The Nippon Keidanren (=Japan Business Federation) released in July 2010 Proposal for New National Defense Program Guidelines, relying on strong requests from the defense industries, and presented New Arms Export and Control Principles.
The federation presents a policy 'to replace the essentially total ban of export regulated by the Three Principles with new, comprehensive rules to examine a specific field from the viewpoints of contents, final export destination and application of each item'. It shows criteria to 'make a comprehensive decision from the viewpoints to maintain security of Japan and the rest of the world and contribute to peacekeeping'.
Comparing the Keidanren's proposal with the decision of Noda government, they are identical. The US government has pushed the Japanese government to lift a ban on arms exports so that the jointly developed weapons can be traded in the world market.
Behind the policy of Noda government we can see coincidence of the DPJ's hope to cover the manufacturers and financial group in their hands and the desires of US and industries.
The New Socialist Party of Japan demands the government to cancel the statement of Chief Cabinet Secretary Fujimura to indicate Merchant of Death as it damages Constitution and distorts the status of Japan as a nation to pursue peace.
February 14, 2012