Monday, June 15, 2015

Japanese Scholars: "Now, 70 years after the war, Japan stands at a critical juncture. One path is that of a nation that does not wage war. The other, a nation that wages war."

Appeal by the Association of Scholars Opposed to the Security-related Bills:
Today, 70 years after the war, Japan stands at a critical juncture. One path is that of a nation that does not wage war. The other, a nation that wages war. The Abe administration has submitted an International Peace Support Bill and an omnibus Peace and Security Legislation Consolidation Bill amending 10 war-related laws for the worse to the Diet, where they are currently being deliberated. Violating Article 9 of the Constitution, these bills would provide for Japan’s Self-Defense Forces to cooperate actively with U.S. and other foreign military operations overseas. We very strongly appeal for the Diet to consider them most carefully and to defeat them in keeping with the Constitution.

If adopted, the legislation would allow (1) using military force, even if Japan is not attacked, if another nation is attacked and the administration deems this situation a threat to Japan’s survival, (2) sending SDF units anywhere in the world where the U.S. or other militaries are waging war and having them provide support in close proximity to combat zones, and (3) deploying the SDF alongside U.S. and other allied forces and authorizing them to fire their weapons ostensibly in defense of their military and other supplies.

Although Prime Minister Abe contends the use of military force would be limited, the legislation opens the way for unbridled use of force by the SDF and violates the principle of exclusively self-defense. Anywhere the SDF uses military force will automatically become a combat zone. As such, the bills are in clear violation of Article 9 paragraph 1’s prohibition against the use of force in combat. For over 60 years, successive administrations have understood that the exercise of collective self-defense violates the Constitution, yet the Abe administration seeks to overturn this and pave the way for Japan’s SDF to take part in American wars of aggression. Should this legislation pass, there is a very real danger that Japan could become a party to hostilities and the SDF an army of aggression in violation of international law.

We bear a special historical burden in that universities collaborated with Japan’s war of aggression and sent numerous students off to battle. Profoundly repentant of this history, we have adopted Article 9 as our own, have engaged in research and education as the bedrock for world peace, and have worked so as to never again be visited by the horrors of war. We cannot allow a situation to arise anew in which our young people are sent off to war to kill and be killed.

In the name of scholarship and conscience, we most strongly protest this unconstitutional legislation’s having been submitted to the Diet and are appalled it is even being deliberated by the Diet. We stand in resolute opposition to this legislation.

June 15, 2015
Association of Scholars Opposed to the Security-related Bills

Aoi Miho (Gakushuin University, law)
Asakura Mutsuko (Waseda University, law)
Awaji Takehisa (Rikkyo University, civil law lawyer)
Chiba Shin (International Christian University, political thought)
Hama Noriko (Doshisha University, international economics)
Higuchi Yoichi (constitutional law, Japan Academy member)
Hirota Teruyuki (Nihon University, education)
Hirowatari Seigo (Senshu University, law, former President of Science Council of Japan)
Horio Teruhisa (University of Tokyo, education)
Ichinokawa Yasutaka (University of Tokyo, sociology)
Ikeuchi Satoru (Nagoya University, astrophysics)
Ishida Hidetaka (University of Tokyo, semiology and media)
Ito Makoto (University of Tokyo, economics)
Kaifu Norio (National Astronomical Observatory, astronomy)
Kaino Michiatsu (Waseda University, law)
Kaneko Masaru (Keio University, fiscal policy)
Katoo Takashi (Seikei University, political philosophy)
Kawamoto Takashi (International Christian University, social logic)
Kimishima Akihiko (Ritsumeikan University, constitutional law and peace studies)
Kobayashi Setsu (Keio University, constitutional law)
Komori Yoichi (University of Tokyo, modern Japanese literature)
Kubo Toru (Shinshu University, history)
Kurihara Akira (Rikkyo University, political sociology)
Mamiya Yosuke (Aoyama Gakuin University, economics)
Masukawa Toshihide (Kyoto University, physics, Nobel laureate)
Mishima Ken’ichi (Osaka University, philosophy & history of thought)
Miyamoto Hisao (University of Tokyo, philosophy)
Miyamoto Ken’ichi (Osaka City University, economics)
Mizuno Kazuo (Nihon University, economics)
Mizushima Asaho (Waseda University, constitutional law)
Nagata Kazuhiro (Kyoto Sangyo University, cellular biology)
Nakatsuka Akira (Nara Women’s University, modern Japanese history)
Nishikawa Jun (Waseda University, international economics)
Nishitani Osamu (Rikkyo University, philosophy & history of thought)
Nishizaki Fumiko (University of Tokyo, history)
Noda Masaaki (psychopathologist)
Oguma Eiji (Keio University, historical sociology)
Okano Yayo (Doshisha University, history of Western political thought)
Osawa Mari (University of Tokyo, social policy)
Saito Jun’ichi (Waseda University, political science)
Sakai Keiko (Chiba University, Iraqi politics)
Sato Manabu (Gakushuin University, education)
Shimazono Susumu (Sophia University, religion)
Sugita Atsushi (Hosei University, political science)
Takahashi Tetsuya (University of Tokyo, philosophy)
Takayama Kanako (Kyoto University, law)
Uchida Tatsuru (Kobe College, philosophy)
Ueno Chizuko (University of Tokyo, sociology)
Ueno Kenji (Kyoto University, mathematics)
Ukai Satoshi (Hitotsubashi University, French literature and thought)
Uno Shigeki (University of Tokyo, history of political thought)
Utsumi Aiko (Keisen University, Japan-Asia relations)
Uyeda Seiya (University of Tokyo, geophysics, Japan Academy member)
Wada Haruki (University of Tokyo, history)
Washitani Izumi (Chuo University, conservation ecology)
Watanabe Osamu (Hitotsubashi University, political science & constitutional law)
Yamaguchi Jiro (Hosei University, political science)
Yamamuro Shin’ichi (Kyoto University, political science)
Yokoyu Sonoko (ex-Chuo University, clinical psychologist)
Yoshida Yutaka (Hitotsubashi University, Japanese history)
Yoshioka Hitoshi (Kyushu University, history of science)

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Greenpeace: Okinawa, Henoko Bay, Save the Dugongs 2015

Via Greenpeace:
Time is running out for Henoko Bay and the last surviving Dugongs of Japan. Please help by adding your name: 

H.E Ms Caroline Kennedy U.S. Ambassador to Japan,

Henoko Bay is the home of the last remaining Dugongs in Japanese waters. It is estimated that there are as few as a dozen left in existence.

We understand that the concrete slabs have already started being dumped into the dugongs primary habitat. We urge you to intervene and halt further construction until a sustainable solution is found which guarantees the survival of this last group of IUCN red-listed Dugongs and protects coral reef and Dugong’s seagrass food supply.

We stand with the local Okinawan people who have voted to elect a prefectural government which is opposed to building a U.S Marine base on this environmentally critical site in Japan.

You have stood up for environmental protection before. We know you can do it again.