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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Nikkan Gendai Report on "Those Who Bought Henoko" 日刊ゲンダイ報道―辺野古を買っていた「政界9人リスト」が問題化


According to the report of Nikkan Gendai, in its March 5, 2010 edition (the whole news text in Japanese below), there are several high-ranking government officials who have bought land around Henoko, the planned site for construction of a new runway as replacement facility of USMC Futenma Air Station.

It was previously reported that Ichiro Ozawa, Secretary-General of the ruling party DPJ (Democratic Party of Japan) had bought a piece of land in Ginoza Village, near Henoko back in 2005. (See related Sankei Newspaper News in Japanese)

According to this undercover research by the National Public Safety Commission and the Research Department of the Ministry of Defense, there are at least nine more people within the government who bought land around the area.

The plan of reclaiming off the coast of Henoko, where Camp Schwab is, to build a new runway was agreed between US (Bush Administration) and Japan (Koizumi Administration) in 2005. The new plan to build a V-shaped runway was agreed upon in 2006. This plan was endorsed by Takemasa Moriya, former Vice Defense Minister who was prosecuted in 2007 for taking bribes from an equipment trader Yamada Corp. in 2007 while overseeing the defense bureaucracy.

The undisclosed list of the nine people are mostly LDP(Liberal Democratic Party) members including those closely associated with Moriya - "N," "K," and "I," all former Chief of Defense Agency (before it became Ministry of Defense), "N" as former Chief Cabinet Secretary, "T" who was the minister with special assignment for Okinawa issues, and "I," who managed the office of Prime Minister as a secretary. These are all LDP members, and two of the rest three are DPJ's incumbent Cabinet members "M" and "K," and "S" of PNP (People's New Party).

Prices of the real estate around Henoko area have been increasing lately, and they are expected to rise more when the new base is built in Henoko as planned. Gendai made inquiries of the offices of those government officials, and their responses were more of less the same:

"There is no such fact." (Office of "S")

"It is ungrounded." (Office of "M")

"The staff in charge is away." (Office of "M")

"I am just an intern and I cannot say the name of the person in charge." (Office of "N")

Journalist Hajime Yokota, who has visited the area before says that the areas surrounding Henoko have already been developed on the assumption that there will be a new based built there. Many public projects are underway including a new gateball centre. Base relocations are perfect opportunities for the interests of the Ministry of Defense and parliamentarians with vested interests in defense-related businesses.

Who are those people mentioned in the Gendai report just with initials?

Looking at the list of recent defense chiefs and cabinet ministers, here are the possibilities.

"N" for Fukushiro Nukaga 額賀福志郎 who was Defence Agency Chief from October 2005 to November 2006.

"K" for Fumio Kyuma 久間章生, who was Defense Minister for the first half of 2007, or Yuriko Koike 小池百合子, who was Defense Minister just over a month after Kyuma.

"I" for Shigeru Ishiba 石破茂, who was Defense Minister from September 2007 to August 2008.

"T" for Sanae Takaichi 高市早苗, who had the ministrial post under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe from September 2006 to August 2007.

"N" as former Chief Cabinet Secretary for Hidenao Nakagawa 中川秀直or Hiromu Nonaka 野中広務.

"I" for former Prime Minister's policy secretary could be Isao Iijima 飯島勲 under Koizumi or Yoshiyuki Inoue 井上義行 under Abe.

The "K"s among the DPJ members within the current Cabinet are Defense Minister Toshimi Kitazawa 北澤俊美, Finance Minister Naoto Kan 菅直人, and Education Minister Tatsuo Kawabata 川端達夫, and the only "M" in the current Cabinet is Transportation Minister Seiji Maehara 前原誠司.

The "S" in PNP is probably Mikio Shimoji 下地幹夫, the only "S" in the incumbent PNP parliamentarians. The Okinawan parliamentarian has already been connected with the interest of his family's construction business. For more, see my previous posts below:

It just makes me sick to the stomach to think of the possibility of some parliamentarians and government officials trying to squeeze money out of Okinawa into their own pockets.


The original Nikkan Gendai news:

  • 辺野古を買っていた「政界9人リスト」が問題化
    日刊ゲンダイ 03月08日10時00分









     土地購入は事実かという日刊ゲンダイ本紙の取材に対し、I事務所は「は? ないです」と即答。他の事務所も似たり寄ったりだ。










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