Krauthammer: Convince Japan to go nuclear
Posted by ampontan on Thursday, May 28, 2009
THE WELL-KNOWN POLITICAL COLUMNIST Charles Krauthammer thinks the United States should encourage Japan to add nuclear weapons to its military arsenal.
He offers two reasons:
First, North Korea is a nuclear power. What we’ve done to deal with the country hasn’t worked in the past, and won’t work in the future.
Second, a nuclear-armed Japan is not only something for North Korea to think about, but also something for China to think about. North Korea would be unable to do what it’s doing if it weren’t for the enabling behavior of the Chinese. (Indeed, North Korean behavior suits Chinese purposes.) Mr. Krauthammer thinks this would make the Chinese get serious about reigning in their client state.
Yes, Mr. Krauthammer knows about the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. My opinion? Nuclear weapons aren’t a problem if they’re in the hands of responsible states. Japan is, and the three existing nuclear powers in Northeast Asia aren’t.
Here’s another thought: It’s been apparent for some time that a major political realignment is coming in Japan, and that the politicians are waiting until after the next lower house election to begin changing partners.
Until now, most people have focused on the domestic issues that will determine alliances in the future, such as the relationship between the political class and the bureaucracy, and the devolution of authority.
The events of the past week might make international issues in general, and military issues in particular, a factor more visible to the public in determining that realignment than has previously been the case. For example, there are about 50 Diet members more loyal to Ozawa Ichiro than they are to their party, the Democratic Party of Japan. The only policy to which Mr. Ozawa has consistently adhered since the early 1990s is what some even in his own party call U.N. supremacy; i.e., Japan can take no military action unless it is in concert with the United Nations. There are people in the ruling LDP who would find that acceptable, and those in the DPJ who do not.