Regarding the Dec. 5 editorial “Dangerous moves on supreme law“: It is a testament to just how far to the left political discourse is in Japan when the idea that Japan should take responsibility for protecting itself is labeled “dangerous.”
Furthermore, the editorial demonstrates ignorance of the Japanese Constitution by stating that “these parties are talking about changing the Constitution without first initiating wide and highly informed public discussions.” According to Article 96 of the Constitution, amendments originate in the Diet, and then are presented to the people for ratification. Since a two-thirds vote in each Diet house is necessary, candidates stimulate “public discussions” simply by mentioning them.
Japan’s current war-renouncing stance is admirable, but it has a fatal, hypocritical flaw — the security guarantee provided by the United States. Japanese voters have declared that they will not send their own citizens to fight and die in wars, but they are often happy to have U.S. citizens do that on their behalf.
Revising Article 9 would allow Japan to end this hypocrisy and end Washington’s influence in Japan’s foreign affairs. This would also serve to moderate Japan’s relations with its neighbors in Asia, just as a mischievous little boy is much better behaved on the playground when his older brother is not around to protect him.
The prevailing antiwar attitude will not change if Japan gets a “regular” military like every other nation on earth. A resurgent Japanese Empire is about as likely as a resurgent Roman Empire.
The opinions expressed in this letter to the editor are the writer’s own and do not necessarily reflect the policies of The Japan Times.