One Japanese politician, Foreign Minister Taro Aso, has suggested that U.S. President George W. Bush has been “naive.” Defense Minister Fumio Kyuma has said Bush was “wrong,” and now the opposition party (Democratic Party of Japan) leader Ichiro Ozawa enters the Bush-bashing fray by saying the war in Iraq was “absurd.” Where were these astute critics of U.S. foreign policy in February 2003?

Most likely they were lining up to shake Bush’s hand when he came calling on former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi. Bush and Koizumi were quite the pair. By 2004, most Japanese politicians had lined up like so many ducklings behind “mother hen” Bush, following him ever so closely. How very muddle-headed and timid they were back in the glory days of “shock and awe.”

Now that the invasion for freedom and democracy has turned into a quagmire of blood and chaos — a military debacle on an epic scale — Japan’s leadership turns like a pack of hyenas to leap at Bush’s exposed throat. A terrible fate for any “lame duck” president, don’t you think?

I wonder what the new Democratic Party-controlled U.S. Congress will think of such a betrayal? Will they be naive enough to trust their Japanese allies?

robert mckinney

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