Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Abe's intention to visit Pearl Harbor

Shinzo Abe, the Prime Minister of Japan, is planning to visit Pearl Harbor, where Japan army bombed firstly in the WWII. It is said that more than 2,400 people were victimized by the attack.

International Business Times: Japanese PM in historic visit to Pearl Harbor 75 years after 'day of infamy'

Abe intends to visit Pearl Harbor late of this December, to express the regret of the war act and mourn for the victims. If realized, it will be the first time for the Japanese leader to make an official visit there. The US seems to welcome the visit.

(Corrected on Dec 8th, 2016) It is said that Shigeru Yoshida also visited Pearl Harbor on his duty of the Prime Minister in 1951.

Abe's decision looks like a response to Obama's visit to Hiroshima this May. It was also a historic meeting.

My past entry: Obama visit Hiroshima for the first time

However, I believe Abe has another reason to make this visit. He can want to strengthen the friendly relationship with the US, especially for Donald Trump, the President-elect.

Abe himself has a strong desire of reforming Constitution. He wants to redefine the history of Japan to resurrect the honor of Japanese. It includes to defining Self Defence Force as a national army.

For this point of view, making a bow to the US is not acceptable for Abe. Rather, independence from the US' protection is the goal of Abe and ruling Liberal Democratic Party. Indeed, some conservative Japanese criticize Abe that he condescend to the US too much.

However, Donald Trump intends to reconsider the relationship with Japan. It is very risky for the both countries. Abe administration has not gained a close relationship with Trump yet. In addition, their opinions are split around the TPP.

To make a historic reform of Constitution which has not been realized so far, stabilized fiscal status is essential. Otherwise, the government would have no room to discuss the reform at all. For Abe administration, while it is desirable to leave the US' protection, economic alliance with the US is still indispensable.

I believe Abe has a deep thought on the decision to visit Pearl Harbor.

By the way, I agree with the amendment of Constitution itself. But the content of proposed amendment by the Liberal Democratic Party is terrible. I myself will never support the current model of the new Constitution.


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