Drishtikone Newsletter #347: Why Was Shinzo Abe Killed?

Shinzo Abe stepped down in 2020 as the PM. So why would anyone kill him? Political and geopolitical dynamics in Japan are complex. A deep dive to make sense.

Last updated on Jul 20, 2022

Posted on Jul 10, 2022

Image by Stefan Keller from Pixabay
“The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in having new eyes.” ― Marcel Proust

(Featured Image Courtesy Flickr)


All of a sudden an ex-Prime Minister of a pacifist nation is killed on an election trail. Why would anyone take the trouble of killing a "has-been"?

Why was Shinzo Abe so important to someone?  Surely an unemployed man with all kinds of improvised guns, with material bought online, couldn't have been the main mastermind.

To understand the reasons, we will need to go all the way to the beginning of the last century.  The clues are hidden in the history of Asia and indeed the global geopolitics.

A stage is being set.

Sometimes one side wins.  At another time, the other force strikes.  Some forces feign one thing and play another role.  Many are stuck in decades and centuries of ideological fossils.  Very few are approaching the now.... in the now.

When the curtain comes down on this century, the miseries and challenges would have mirrored the ones in the last century.  Only this time, the consequences would be existential.


A Shocking Assassination

On July 8th, 2022, Friday Shinzo Abe was speaking in support of fellow LDP party member Kei Satō for the House of Councillors election.  A gunman standing right behind him shot Abe twice and killed him with the second bullet.  The first bullet hit Abe in the neck and the second in the heart.  

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The last moments of Shinzo Abe

The real crux was what happened between the first bullet and the second.  Abe could have been saved.  He looked back after the first bullet and the assassin had enough time to shoot him again.  This time fatally.

Shinzo Abe was shot at by a 41-year-old man named Tetsuya Yamagami.   He said that he is unemployed and "holds hatred toward a certain group that he thought Abe was linked to". (Source: CNN)

So ostensibly the gunman killed Abe because of his association with a religious group.  Which one?

Yamagami stated , "I aimed to know that my mother was a believer in the Unification Church and Shinzo Abe was close to the Unification Church ." Why did Yamagami think that the Unification Church had contact with Mr. Abe? The Unification Church-based political organization "International Federation for Victory and Coalition" is a conservative group founded in 1968, and is said to be closely related to the conservative members of the Liberal Democratic Party. The relationship between Mr. Abe and the Katsukyo Union has been talked about online for some time. On September 12, last year, Mr. Abe attended a rally of the Universal Peace Federation (UPF) affiliated with the former Unification Church online in the Japanese Communist Party's newspaper "Shimbun Akahata," which has a hostile relationship with the Unification Church . I would like to pay tribute to all of you, including President Hak Ja Han Moon, who has worked with UPF to resolve conflicts around the world, especially to peacefully unify the Korean Peninsula . " (Translated from Japanese using Google Translation - Source)

Interestingly, this unemployed man was able to create a "home-made gun".  

Source: CNN

It had "two cylindrical metal barrels wrapped in black tape".  The bullets were inserted inside the pipes and the bullets were created from the parts bought online.

Chinese Glee

Although there was shock and sorrow around the world on the assassination of Shinzo Abe, there was one place where people reacted very differently.  

China.

Many expressed joy and happiness.

Multiple commentators on Weibo, a Chinese social media platform, greeted news of Abe’s shooting — allegedly by a 41-year old Japanese man whose motives remain unclear — at a campaign event Friday by calling for “wine and dine” to toast his death. Some said his killer is a “hero,” as Abe pioneered a foreign policy geared to countering the expansion of China’s growing economic, diplomatic and military footprint in the Indo-Pacific that infuriated Beijing. The response in China reflects how decades of government propaganda designed to stoke Chinese nationalism by vilifying the Japanese for wartime atrocities has poisoned public attitudes toward Japan. The propaganda also complicates Beijing’s efforts to improve relations with Tokyo to offset the Biden administration’s China-countering Indo-Pacific Strategy. (Source: Politico)

The Chinese relationship with Japan should be understood in this context.

Shinzo Abe - the longest-serving Japanese Prime Minister

Shinzo Abe's family is deeply connected to politics of the land.

Shinzo Abe's father - Shintaro Abe - was a politician from the largest Yamaguchi Prefecture region. A prominent member of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) and the Japanese foreign minister from 1982 through 1986.

Shinzo Abe's maternal grandfather was considered to be an economic king in China and Manchukuo.

To understand Shinzo Abe's politics, it is important to understand the general dynamics in Japan at large and the rising sentiment with respect to Japan's sovereign rights and cultural independence.  The movement that has taken shape to emphasize those issues is called Nippon Kaigi.  Or the "Japan Conference".

For the Hindu readers, the characterization of this group in the West is eerily similar to the Hinduphobic ways that the Western media employs against the Hindus.  Yes, the Japanese military and rulers did a lot of savage things across Asia in the lead-up to World War II, which we will discuss later.  But, is that all to Japanese history?

To be proud of one's nation and history is the sine qua non of any society's existence.  If nationalism is a sin, then what about the American nationalism that is on display at every government event and speech?  In fact, it is not even American nationalism, it is exceptionalism that is on display.  At the expense of every civilization and nation in the world.  And that is fine.  That is how every nation and group of people work.  If Americans did not believe in their unique place under the sun, there would be no America.  Just as if the Japanese did not think they were unique people, there would be no Japan.

If war crimes were the measure of evaluating the legitimacy of a group or nation, or otherwise, then what were Nagasaki and Hiroshima?  But trust the liberal Western media to use their favorite catch-phrases to evoke fear - 'blatantly revisionist', 'far right' etc.

The Japan Conference (Nippon Kaigi) : An Elusive Conglomerate (Source)

So, take these words with a pinch of salt.  

You see, there is a lack of serious attention in the West to things that are deeper than an inch in the rest of the world.  

They are beset with a deep and hopeless reductionist syndrome.

The Zen way of life or the art and craft of Judo, for example, are reduced to a certification.  Just as Yoga is a course or a class that ends with a "pass" result.

There is no seriousness to things.  

When Sage Bodhisattva took dhyaan/Meditation and the ancient art of martial training to the Far East, they assimilated all that.  But they also evolved it in their own way.  So dhyaan became Chán in China and Zen in Japan with its own spiritual tradition.  The martial arts were transformed in those cultures as Kung Fu, Judo, and many other forms.  All with deep spiritual frameworks.

It was a value addition.

But when dhyaan or the larger science of Yoga came to the West, it was reduced to a mere certification sans any transformative experience.

It was a destruction of the most profound science of existence.  Because their simplistic and small worldview couldn't do any better.

Profundity collapses into baseness when it meets a reductionist framework.

That is why when the Western media with its limited worldview and reductionist approach tries to use its already simplistic boxes to view the complex scenarios in the other countries, you can be sure that they are constructing caricatures that have very little relationship to the actual situation as opposed to sharing serious commentary on a topic or phenomenon.

So when we discuss what has been happening in Japan, process it with two critical aspects:

  1. Western reductionist ways
  2. Use a wider and larger view where you replace your view of your nation and your love for its tradition with that of the Japanese people

This is important.  

After all, when the US establishment wanted, it turned Jihadis into villains, allies, lovebirds, and target practice when it wanted.  With all kinds of justifications to go with those narratives as well.  All neatly done.

In the context of World War II, it characterized Hitler and the Japanese - the Axis forces as evil and the Allied forces as paragons of humanity.  We all know that it wasn't the whole truth.

If Hitler killed 6 million Jews over a period of 12 years (1933 through 1945), then Winston Churchill killed over 3 million Indians in a matter of few months by deliberately engineered droughts in 1943 (Source). While Hitler was the paragon of evil, Churchill was "god's gift to mankind".

The needless and egregious Iraq war resulted in deaths ranging from half a million to over a million.

More than 1,000,000 Iraqis murdered since 2003 invasion In the week in which General Patraeus reports back to US Congress on the impact the recent 'surge' is having in Iraq, a new poll reveals that more than 1,000,000 Iraqi citizens have been murdered since the invasion took place in 2003. Previous estimates, most noticeably the one published in the Lancet in October 2006, suggested almost half this number (654,965 deaths).  These findings come from a poll released today by O.R.B., the British polling agency that have been tracking public opinion in Iraq since 2005. (Source)

Weren't those war crimes enough?

War Crimes and war crimes

What the Japanese armies did was inhuman and truly war crimes.  Let us look into them.

Japanese War Crimes

Chinese civilians were massacred by the Japanese forces from 1937 to the end of World War II.  This included the Nanjing (Nanking) Massacre or the Rape of Nanjing (the then capital of the Republic of China), where over 300,000 people were killed and over 80,000 women raped.  A massacre that started on December 13th, 1937, lasted for 6 weeks.

From the invasion of China in 1937 to the end of World War II, the Japanese military regime murdered near 3,000,000 to over 10,000,000 people, most probably almost 6,000,000 Chinese, Indonesians, Koreans, Filipinos, and Indochinese, among others, including Western prisoners of war. (Source: RJ Rummel)

Only the evil of the worst kind could have executed such acts.

Pakistani War Crimes brought to you by Nixon-Kissinger

While we are at the question of mass murders, massacres, and mass rapes, it would be interesting to note that in the run-up to the 1971 Indo-Pakistan war (and the liberation of Bangladesh) the Pakistani Army killed over 3 million people.  Predominantly Hindus!

On March 25, 1971, the Pakistani Army launched a devastating military crackdown on restive Bengalis in what was then East Pakistan. While the slaughter in what would soon become an independent Bangladesh was underway, the C.I.A. and State Department conservatively estimated that roughly two hundred thousand people had died (the official Bangladeshi death toll is three million). Some ten million Bengali refugees fled to India, where untold numbers died in miserable conditions in refugee camps. Pakistan was a Cold War ally of the United States, and Richard Nixon and his national-security advisor, Henry Kissinger, resolutely supported its military dictatorship; they refused to impose pressure on Pakistan’s generals to forestall further atrocities. (Source: New Yorker)

The toll on women was unbelievably cruel and evil.  Up to 400,000 women and girls had been raped, gang-raped, and tortured.  Many girls were kept as sex slaves in the Pakistani army camps.  Some 30,000 later committed suicide!

All this was facilitated and backed by Henry Kissinger, Richard Nixon, and the US establishment.

To understand the absolute evil that was perpetrated by the West during this genocide, please watch this interview that BBC did with the then Prime Minister of India, Indira Gandhi.  The absolute arrogance and patronizing attitude of the interviewer are just remarkable!

So, yes war crimes have happened everywhere.  Of unimaginable proportions.  World, specifically the "Civilized and Liberal world" has cherry-picked some as evil while proudly unleashing others on humanity without remorse!

Nations and armies make decisions and take sides based on the establishments that run them at a certain time.  The blot should never be transferred over to the nation in general, even when the overall national psyche may have a similar sentiment.

The exceptionalism that was at the base of the decisions of starting the Iraqi wars by Bush Sr and Jr may still be alive and prized, but that cannot and should not taint the entire American nation.

So then how is it that Japan's past is such a blot that it should be used as a whip against them for posterity?

It is with this sense of objective equanimity that one should approach Japan's political dynamics.  Not with the over-the-top and melodramatic "sky-is-falling" approach of good vs evil (where the speaker is good and the rest are evil, because well the speaker said so) that the extreme leftist Western media often employs.

Nippon Kaigi (The 'Japan Conference') and Control

Let us now discuss the most interesting aspect of Japanese politics we alluded to earlier that many folks outside that country have no idea about.

Nippon Kaigi.

Majority of the ruling class, intellectuals, judges, etc are members of this organization.  Liberal Democratic Party's politicians are aligned with this and have been at the helm of Japan for a long time.

Of the 90 parliamentarians who visited the controversial Yasukuni war shrine on April 21, most, if not all, were members of a right-wing nationalist group called Nippon Kaigi. Nearly all of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s Liberal Democratic Party cabinet colleagues since 2012 have been members. Abe himself is a ‘special adviser’ to the group. Key elements of the group's agenda are reverence for the emperor, reform of the Constitution, worship at the Yasukuni war shrine, patriotic education and deployment of Japan's defence forces overseas. (Source)

Yet if you read anything in the English media, you will only see its criticism and the entire group being vilified, and are left with a feeling that they are "almost fringe".  

Why?

Because they want to change the Constitution so that Japan can be free to make its decisions on its own military and geopolitical destiny.  So that the shackles that were put by the Allied forces right after World War II and the nuking of its cities can have an expiry date.

That is not acceptable to the Western media aligned and usurped by the Chinese and Islamist interests.  

So the compromised Western media posits it as a choice between "Pacifist Japan" (under the WWII-inspired Constitution) Vs Imperial and 'War Criminal' Japan (looking for a new Constitution).

As if those are the only options out there.

It could be possible - and from the narratives and positions of the ruling elite and Nippon Kaigi aligned politicians it is obvious - that the reality could be none of these.  

For example - it could be that the Japanese do want full independence from the WWII shackles to decide their own destiny and foreign policy measures while holding on to their historical legacy even when they reject a future of war crimes!

That situation, which may seem more likely, would have one element missing: Western control over the Japanese polity. A scenario that also keeps it from challenging China.

That may be what the fight is for - control.

Tawara Yoshifumi has written a lot of books on Nippon Kaigi and most of his critique seems to be characterized by the words that have been used since World War II to paint someone as evil: Right-Wing, Revisionist, Anti-women, Nationalist.  Does that seem familiar?

"What is the Aim of Nippon Kaigi, the Ultra-Right Organization that Supports Japan’s Abe Administration?" by Tawara Yoshifumi (Source)

When you listen to how the constituents of Nippon Kaigi articulate the issues facing them, you can see that the Emperor is important to create a link to the heritage and Japanese history in order to create pride in the national ethos.  Something that is critical for any nation's unity.  

Pilgrims and the original settlers were responsible for the Native American genocide. But is that past rejected by the Americans in a general and complete way?  The crimes of that time are discussed and denounced but not the people, the leaders, or the history of it all.

"What is the Aim of Nippon Kaigi, the Ultra-Right Organization that Supports Japan’s Abe Administration?" by Tawara Yoshifumi (Source)

As usual, the liberal press in the US uses its own template of innuendos and linking of even stray comments to the main narrative to drive a point that it has already decided upon.  Of course, with the right sprinkling of some 'key words'.  

Do you remember that 2014 was the time when "Tea Party conservatives" were the proxy for humanity's greatest villains?  

Donald Trump was unknown.  

The markers and semantics adjusted after that.  

So, equating Abe's background to "Tea Party Politics" was a lazy yet effective way to drive home the point that Abe and Nippon Kaigi were the next worst things to Hitler. Specifically for the consumption of the American liberal populace which is exceptionally well-read in reductionist metaphors and innuendo-laden worldview.

"Tea Party Politics in Japan", New York Times - by Norihiro Kato (Source)

New York Times and their silly opinions were not the only efforts in intellectually bankrupt cacophony from the American extreme and rabid left.  

But even by their ridiculously low standards of incoherent nonsense, the use of the epithet "Racist" for a leader of a racially homogenous society is quite spectacular!

Jacobin (Source)

All this - was because Shinzo Abe was aligned with President Trump in the mission to check the Chinese designs in the South China Sea.

So as we said in the beginning, take things written in the Western media with a pinch of salt and approach this topic with a sense of objective equanimity.  It will keep you sane and strategically better informed.

World War II and the Japanese Constitution

The United States detonated an atomic bomb over the Japanese city of Hiroshima on August 6th, 1945 at 8:15 AM local time.  US President Harry Truman pushed for the surrender of Japan just 16 hours later with a warning.

If they do not now accept our terms they may expect a rain of ruin from the air, the like of which has never been seen on this earth. Behind this air attack will follow sea and land forces in such numbers and power as they have not yet seen and with the fighting skill of which they are already well aware. (Source)

On August 8th, the Soviets declared war on Japan.  Around midnight of August 9th, 1945, the Soviets attacked the Japanese state of Manchukuo.

Hours later, at 11:02 AM the US detonated yet another atomic bomb on the city of Nagasaki.

On August 15th, 1945 Japanese Emperor Hirohito surrendered to the US and formally signed the papers on September 2nd, 1945.

After that Japan was under Occupation from 1945 through to 1952 by forces led by the United States with the support of the British Commonwealth and the supervision of the Far Eastern Commission.

Security Treaty between the United States and Japan was signed on September 8th, 1951 in San Francisco by American and Japanese representatives.  The San Francisco Peace Treaty had ended World War II in Asia and the Occupation of Japan by the Allied forces led by the US and Britain.

This agreement had clauses where Japan was to allow the United States to continue its military bases in Japan beyond the Occupation. Japan could not provide any bases or military-related rights without the prior consent of the United States. The forces that the United States had on the Japanese bases could be used without any consultation with the Japanese government.

The worse part was that there was no mention of any US intervention if Japan was attacked.  (Source: Yale Law)

The Japanese Constitution was promulgated on November 3, 1946, and came into effect on May 3, 1947. (Source: Constitution of Japan).  

The 1951 agreement was a very humiliating deal for the Japanese and it set off large-scale protests on both left and right.

Japan at the Crossroads by Nick Kapur (Source)

The protests forced the US to reconsider the terms of the 1951 agreement.  

So, The Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security between the United States and Japan was signed on January 19, 1960, and came into effect on June 23, 1960. (Source)

This new treaty had some important changes.  Specifically with respect to no consultation by the US with Japan on the use of forces based in Japan or protection of Japan in case of an attack.  In fact, the new agreement even provided for the US troops to intervene in domestic disputes in Japan.

Abe's Transformative Ways

Ever since Shinzo Abe stepped into the role of the Japanese Prime Minister, he was well aware of Japan's presence and destiny on the world stage.

On February 12, 2013, right after Richard Armitage and Joseph Nye had found a change in Japan's trajectory "alarming" because Japan intended to remain a "tier one power" as in the past, Abe strolled onto the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) podium to announce:

"Japan is not now and will never be a tier two power."

[Source: Line of Advantage: Japan’s Grand Strategy in the Era of Abe Shinzō]

After that Abe worked to make it a reality.  

For example, he established Japan’s National Security Council (NSC).  Its central objective was "strengthening the prime minister’s office and addressing perceived weaknesses of previous national security institutions."

Japan’s National Security Council at five; Brookings (Source)

Shinzo Abe also believed that Article 9, under which Japan really lost its sovereign rights (primarily the right to wage war and maintain armed forces) was humiliating.  It was a continuation of Japan’s surrender to the United States.  Specifically, with the threats from China and North Korea, that constraint was now extremely unfair.

The Japanese Constitution (Source)

Abe’s main political planks always were:

  1. Revise the Constitution to do away with the constraints imposed by the US-written charter
  2. Rewrite Japan’s history in the context of Asia
  3. Restore power to the emperor

As is apparent by now that many in Japan saw the rules in the 1961 agreement and the Japanese Constitution to be demeaning and had reservations about the way Japanese history was written to make them ashamed of who they are as people.  

It is instructive to note that Nubuo Kishi, the current Japanese Defense minister's views mirror Abe's views exactly.  What Abe set in motion is an institutional framework of national transformation.  Not a personal agenda.

"Nobuo Kishi, Abe's younger brother, seeks to carve out new role as Japan's defense chief": Japan Times

Abe's objectives were not just his own.  They were shared by others in his party as well.  Of course, it helped that it was all "within one family"!

Nobuo Kishi, for example, is the youngest son of Shintaro Abe and Yoko Abe (maiden name Kishi) and Shinzo Abe's real younger brother.  He was adopted by his maternal uncle after his birth and came to know about his real parents when he was going to college. He worked with Sumitomo Corporation until 2002 and had been to US, Vietnam, and Australia.

In 2004, he was elected to the House of Councillors.  And in 2012, he was elected to the House of Representatives.  He was made the Senior Vice Foreign Minister in 2013 and has been credited with forging ties with Taiwan.

Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen meets Nobuo Kishi at her official residence on January 12, 2020 (SCMP) (Source)

In 2015, Kishi was instrumental in setting up a meeting of PM Abe with ROC opposition leader Tsai Ing-wen.

Chairman of a lawmakers’ group seeking to promote economic and cultural exchanges between Japan and Taiwan, Kishi has over the years served as a liaison with Taiwan officials, a role that culminated with the initiative he took in arranging then-opposition leader Tsai Ing-wen’s meeting with Abe in his hometown of Yamaguchi Prefecture in 2015. This kinship with Taiwan is something that runs in his family: Nobusuke Kishi is said to have cultivated a close rapport with ex-Taiwan leader Chiang Kai-shek. (Source: Japan Times)

The warming of ties with Taiwan was something that was very close to Shinzo Abe's heart.  Abe was very clear that China needs to be checked and the "One China" policy was to be challenged.

Last year when China banned Taiwanese pineapples, Abe posted this pic on Twitter with Taiwanese pineapples in support of the Taiwanese people.

Source - Twitter

Later in November, Abe stated that if China were to attack Taiwan, the US and Japan will not just stand by.

Source: CNBC

It greatly irked China, which did what it does best - summon the Japanese envoy and whine. (Source)  But even more significantly, it openly threatened Shinzo Abe.

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Shinzo Abe, however, had in his own way been strategizing to control the rise of China.  That is why he worked closely with US President Donald Trump.  The Obama administration was in many ways besotted with China and basically dumped the US national interests to enable China to grow and win.  In that way, Trump was a great help in countering China.  

Japan’s Grand Strategy in the Era of Shinzo Abe - CSIS (Source)

Not just Quad, but the "Free and Open Indo-Pacific" framework was also Abe's brainchild.  

[Please read Drishtikone newsletters - Issue #184: Biden = End of US Power = Chinese Global Supremacy and Issue #200 - The Obedient Poodle]

Michael J Green, a serious American commentator on Japan (Senior Vice President for Asia, Japan Chair, and Henry A. Kissinger Chair, CSIS; Director of Asian Studies, School of Foreign Service, Georgetown University) has written a book titled "Line of Advantage: Japan’s Grand Strategy in the Era of Abe Shinzo".  

The book discusses the influence and the conceptualization behind Grand Strategy for Japan that Shinzo Abe has set his nation on.

Green’s book offers deep insights on Japan’s history and contemporary affairs, drawing on his experiences as a policymaker in the White House and a senior think-tanker closely working with the government of Japan. His high praise of Abe’s strategic worldview is reflected in the title of the volume, “line of advantage”. Although the term originated with Japan’s prime minister Yamagata Aritomo in 1890, who insisted on marking a boundary outside the “line of sovereignty” to prevent adversaries from controlling the critical access points to Japan, Green distinguishes Abe’s line from Yamagata’s. While Yamagata’s idea melded with imperialism and led to Japan’s territorial expansion in the Korean Peninsula, Taiwan, Manchuria and the Chinese mainland, Abe’s statecraft was chiefly based on maritime security and international rule-making, which provides Japan “far better choices than it did a century ago”. Consequently, as Green explains, Japan’s way of combining competition and engagement with China became the model for other democracies. Abe’s idea of a Free and Open Indo-Pacific, for example, affected America and led the Trump administration to use the same term, not vice versa. (Source)

Please check this very informative discussion within CSIS with the author - Michael Green.

Shinzo Abe's influence not just in Japan but globally is very difficult to fathom.  It has indeed been tremendous!

The Coming Elections and the Constitution

Shinzo Abe stepped down in September 2020 as the Prime Minister.

Behind the scenes, however, one family and its leader Shinzo Abe remained the main force.

Every move and political action was to go towards one objective - free and assertive Japan.

On July 10th, 2022, Japan will have its 26th triennial election to elect half of the 248-member upper house or the House of Councillors.

But the LDP, Abe's party, and its allies were confident that they will get enough numbers to change the Constitution.

"After the election, we want to as quickly as we can propose to the Diet constitutional revisions and have the proposed changes initiated," Toshimitsu Motegi, the LDP's secretary-general, told media outlets including Kyodo News in an interview. For any revision to Japan's postwar pacifist Constitution to be initiated, approval by a two-thirds majority in both houses is required.  Motegi's remarks were made under the proviso that pro-amendment lawmakers including in the LDP, its junior coalition partner Komeito, the Japan Innovation Party and the Democratic Party for the People would secure two-thirds or more seats at the upper house poll. Motegi, a former foreign minister, said the LDP wants to "share a sense of a timetable with major parties and realize constitutional reform at an early stage." He pointed to major changes such as in the security environment, saying, "We hope that parties and lawmakers with a forward-thinking stance on constitutional reform will gain the people's support."  (Source: Kyodo News)

Once LDP gets enough political strength to change Article 9 of the Constitution, Japan can set its independent course on the path to containing over-ambitious China.


The elections resulted in a landslide for Shinzo Abe's party giving them a two-thirds majority needed to revise the Constitution.  Thus fulfilling Shinzo Abe's dream.

Source: Japan Times

Bomb in the basement?

Even though Japan is a signatory to the International Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty, which bans it from developing nuclear weapons, the Chinese are certain that Japan has a "bomb in its basement".

“Japan already has the technical capability, and has had it since the 1980s,” said the official. He said that once Japan had more than five to 10 kilograms of plutonium, the amount needed for a single weapon, it had “already gone over the threshold,” and had a nuclear deterrent. Japan now has 9 tons of plutonium stockpiled at several locations in Japan and another 35 tons stored in France and the U.K. The material is enough to create 5,000 nuclear bombs. The country also has 1.2 tons of enriched uranium. (Source: NBC)

So, basically, Japan has the required technology and even the fissile material to make enough nukes to handle China.  

When pushed against the wall, would that be Japan's last resort to handle China?

Meanwhile, Japan is working on a new fast-breeder plutonium reactor in Rokkasho.  It can produce 8 tons of plutonium a year, or enough for 1,000 Nagasaki-sized weapons. (Source: NBC) After several delays, its operations are set to start in 2024. (Source)

Bottom line: Who assassinated Shinzo Abe?

It could very well be that the assassination was the act of a deranged idiot.  But we all know that such things usually aren't.

As much as the American establishment in general and Democrats, in particular, hated Shinzo Abe's chutzpah and Japan's revival, they aren't likely to have been the direct executioners.  

The Democratic establishment of Joe Biden has been compromised by the Chinese in many ways.  So some possibility of involvement of the US in this operation could be there but is unclear and probably very thin.

The Chinese establishment, however, would have some serious explaining to do in this.  The chances of its planning and execution are quite high.  

Check out this short but interesting discussion between Elmer Yuen and Shree Iyer of PGurus.

Elmer's analysis also touches on the points that we have covered in our newsletter today.

Video Corner: Diving deep into Infidelity

Infidelity or extra-marital (extra-relationship) affairs have been since marriage was invented.  

It is something that is universally forbidden but also at the same time is universally practiced!

It is always said that men cheat out of boredom and fear of intimacy, while women cheat because of loneliness and hunger for intimacy.  

But is it so?

There was a time when monogamy used to be "One person for life."  That has changed.  It is now "One person at a time."

Esther Perel is an expert on this topic and has worked with many couples.  She shares one example of an Indian woman who grew up in a traditional Indian family only to have an affair at 47 years with a guy who came to cut their tree in the yard!

A very informative talk that will make you think.

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