NAPSNet Daily Report 21 September, 2001

Recommended Citation

"NAPSNet Daily Report 21 September, 2001", NAPSNet Daily Report, September 21, 2001, https://nautilus.org/napsnet/napsnet-daily-report/napsnet-daily-report-21-september-2001/

 
CONTENTS

I. United States

1. ROK on Sunshine Policy
2. World Response to US Retaliation
3. US Retaliation Effects on PRC
4. Japanese Role in US Retaliation
II. Republic of Korea 1. DPRK-French Talks
2. ROK Aid to DPRK
3. Family Reunions
III. Japan 1. US Bases in Japan
2. SDF’s Dispatch
3. SDF’s Logistical Support for US
4. Peace Movements in Japan

I. United States

1. ROK on Sunshine Policy

Agence France-Presse (“SOUTH KOREA KIM READY TO DEFEND ‘SUNSHINE POLICY’ WITH VETO,” Seoul, 9/21/01) reported that ROK party officials confirmed Thursday that ROK President Kim Dae-jung was ready to become the first ROK leader to veto parliamentary decisions in order to stop a new opposition onslaught on his DPRK policy. Kim gave his warning after the opposition demanded that the ROK government secure National Assembly approval before new aid was given to the DPRK. Many ROK residents believe Kim has paid too high a price for any gains made from engaging the DPRK, but the aides have insisted that Kim has spent less on the DPRK than his predecessor, Kim Young-sam.

2. World Response to US Retaliation

Reuters (Patricia Zengerle, “WORLD RESPONDS QUICKLY, NOT CLEARLY, TO BUSH,” London, 9/21/01) reported that US President George W. Bush on Friday told foreign governments, “Either you are with us, or you are with the terrorists.” US response was overwhelmingly favorable after Bush warned Afghanistan’s Taliban rulers to hand over Osama bin Laden, with one US poll showing 91-percent approval of how Bush was handling the US response. British Prime Minister Tony Blair had earlier reaffirmed his pledge to stand side by side with the US and British forces have begun to realign for an expected US attack. However, many leaders expressed concern. Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit has offered full cooperation, but on Friday he expressed concern at the global economic impact of continued uncertainty. French Foreign Minister Hubert Vedrine said the UN Security Council might consider imposing sanctions on countries that refuse to cooperate with the US in its response. Arab League Secretary- General Amr Moussa said in an interview broadcast early on Friday that Arabs would not play a role in any campaign of retaliation for last week’s attacks if Israel took part in such an effort. He said Arab states had imposed a similar condition in 1990 when the US was building a coalition to eject Iraqi troops from Kuwait. The PRC offered no immediate direct comment, but said it would not let bin Laden enter its territory from neighboring Afghanistan, where he is believed to be living. The Philippines said it would let the US use its former bases in the island state, but likely would not send ground troops to support an attack. Philippine President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo said it would be a few days before she would outline her response. Meanwhile, Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said he would meet Bush in Washington on September 25 to pledge Japan’s full support for a “war on terrorism.”

3. US Retaliation Effects on PRC

South China Morning Post (Mark O’Neill, “PLA SEES AFGHAN CONFLICT AS THREAT TO BORDER STABILITY,” 9/20/01) reported that PRC observers raised concerns about the possible consequences for the region of a likely attack by the US on Afghanistan. Jin Canrong, a professor at Beijing’s America Institute of the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, warned that a US military attack on Afghanistan must be short term, reasonable and based on evidence. Jin said that a NATO occupation of the country would have terrifying consequences for the region. The People’s Liberation Army (PLA), which is charged with protecting the PRC borders with Pakistan, Afghanistan and central Asia, sees military conflict in that region as threatening the stability of the far west of Xinjiang. The worst scenario for the PLA would be the installation of an Islamic government in Pakistan that supported and trained Xinjiang guerillas and the designation of the PRC as an “anti-Muslim” state. Another concern is that a war in Afghanistan might give the US the opportunity to secure long-term military bases in southwest Asia, just as the Gulf War enabled it to station troops and planes in Saudi Arabia. This would mean US forces would be as close to the PRC’s southwest border as they are to the east, in bases in the ROK and Japan. Jin said that the US would be justified in carrying out a limited military intervention in Afghanistan. He said, “If they make an air attack or send in [special forces] … it will not have a big impact on the region. But if the US and NATO occupy Afghanistan in the long term, that would be terrifying. It would affect all the neighboring countries – China and its far west, Russia and Pakistan. It would bring problems for all of them.” Jin’s views were echoed by two PLA officers, Wang Xiangsui and Qiao Liang, the co-authors of the book “Unlimited Warfare.” In a discussion on the Sina.com Web site, Qiao said that the incident should cause the US to reflect on its decision to set up a national missile-defense system purely for its own security. Qiao warned, “a country’s security cannot be built upon the foundation of others’ insecurity. People do not know who the enemy is this time. This is because America has too many enemies.” He added that US policy was indirectly responsible for the attack.

4. Japanese Role in US Retaliation

Reuters (Kazunori Takada, “JAPAN PM TO MEET BUSH, PLEDGE FULL SUPPORT,” Tokyo, 9/21/01) reported that Japanese Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi said on Friday that he would meet US President George W. Bush in Washington next week to pledge Japan’s full support for a “war on terrorism.” Koizumi said, “I plan to tell President Bush that we share a strong anger at these extremely cowardly acts. I plan to say that Japan is not an observer in this battle against terrorists and that we plan to cooperate, making use of all our power.” Koizumi said this week that Japan would take measures to allow its forces to provide logistical support for US military operations in response to the attacks. This would probably include backup support such as providing medical services, gathering electronic intelligence, and supplying and transporting supplies. A Defense Agency official said on Friday that Japan was considering sending surveillance aircraft as well as warships equipped with Aegis air defense systems to the Indian Ocean to support US forces in the event of a strike on Afghanistan. The US aircraft carrier Kitty Hawk, escorted by several Japanese destroyers, left its homeport at Yokosuka, southwest of Tokyo, earlier on Friday. The US Navy declined to comment, but local media reported that the carrier, which carries about 70 aircraft, was headed for the Indian Ocean. A US Defense Agency official said that the Japanese escorts would remain in Japanese waters.

II. Republic of Korea

1. DPRK-French Talks

The Korea Herald (Hwang Jang-jin, “‘P’YANG MUST WORK FOR TIES WITH PARIS’: FRENCH AMBASSADOR,” Seoul, 09/21/01) reported that French Ambassador to the ROK Francois Descoueyte said that France wants to actively engage the DPRK to improve their bilateral ties, but it will not rush into diplomatic recognition before the DPRK makes substantial changes to its policy on human rights and security issues. Descoueyte said, “We have frequent contacts. But much work remains to be done before these talks lead to the opening of an embassy in Pyongyang.” Descoueyte said that a group of French diplomats, led by Dominique Girard, director of Asian affairs in the Foreign Ministry, will visit Pyongyang in early October. He said that the visit is aimed at helping the Koreas maintain momentum for reconciliation and at discussing pending issues between France and the DPRK. He added, “The question of opening an embassy in Pyongyang depends on the progress of talks on these issues.”

2. ROK Aid to DPRK

The Korea Herald (“GNP WILL NOT OPPOSE RICE AID PLAN TO N.K.,” Seoul, 09/21/01) reported that the ROK’s main opposition Grand National Party (GNP) said Thursday that it would not oppose the ROK government’s plan to donate the nation’s surplus rice to the DPRK on humanitarian grounds. The GNP also came up with its own plan to send 290,000 tons of rice to the DPRK on a long-term loan basis, on the condition that it should not be diverted for military purposes.

3. Family Reunions

Joongang Ilbo (Kim Hee-sung, “300 CANDIDATES TO BE SELECTED FOR REUNION EVENT,” Seoul, 09/20/01) reported that as a follow-up measure for the fifth inter-Korean Cabinet meeting the ROK has begun its preparations for the fourth round of family reunion events and talks to revive the moribund Mount Kumgang tour business with the DPRK slated for October 4. The ROK is expected to form a five-member delegation made up of personnel from the Ministries of Unification, National Defense, Construction and Transportation and other relevant organizations for the Mount Kumgang talks. The Red Cross Society meanwhile disclosed its plan to form a special committee to establish new standards for family reunions. A computer lottery will be used for selecting the first 300 candidates for the reunion Friday at 11 a.m. The applicants will be notified of the information the same day. A total of 117,298 registered to the information center. Among them, 12,664 passed away and 104,634 are still on the waiting list. The competitive rate is estimated to be about 349:1.

III. Japan

1. US Bases in Japan

The Asahi Shimbun English edition (“US BASES GEAR UP FOR RETALIATION,” Tokyo, 09/17/01) reported that activity picked up over the weekend at US military bases in Japan as the 7th Fleet apparently prepared to take part in retaliation for Tuesday’s terrorist attacks in the US. The guided missile cruiser USS Cowpens left its port of Yokosuka on Saturday. An escort vessel for the aircraft carrier USS Kitty Hawk, the Cowpens became the first US vessel to leave Yokosuka after the attacks. At the same time, take-offs and landings by aircraft at Naval Air Facility Atsugi also picked up over the weekend. The fighter jets involved in the training exercises there are assigned to the aircraft carriers of the 7th Fleet. At US Fleet Activities Sasebo, seven vessels, including a number of amphibious landing vessels designed to transport ground forces, were stepping up preparations for departure. US bases in Okinawa were also on a heightened state of alert.

2. SDF’s Dispatch

The Asahi Shimbun English edition (“SDF SHIPS MAY HEAD FOR INDIAN OCEAN,” Tokyo, 09/19/01) reported that Japanese Defense Agency was considering dispatching SDF vessels to the Indian Ocean to gather intelligence ahead of anticipated US military retaliation for last week’s attacks. The sources said that the agency believes the deployment may be a necessary prelude to Japan providing logistical support to US forces if the attacks go ahead, and that SDF vessels may also be sent to other, unspecified areas.

3. SDF’s Logistical Support for US

The Japan Times (“NAKATANI SAYS SUPPORT FOR US ACTION POSSIBLE DESPITE ’99 LAW’S BOUNDARIES,” Tokyo, 09/19/01) reported that Japanese Defense Agency chief Gen Nakatani indicated that laws enacted in 1999 covering the emergencies ‘in areas surrounding Japan’ may allow the nation to extend logistical support to the US in any retaliation against last week’s attacks. During Diet deliberation on the laws, however, late Prime Minister Keizo Obuchi said that the Indian Ocean and the Middle East were not included in the assumed areas covered by the laws. Chief Cabinet Secretary Yasuo Fukuda has indicated that it will be difficult to interpret the 1999 laws as allowing the cooperation with possible US operations in Afghanistan. Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi instructed the government and the ruling coalition on Monday to consider drafting new legislation. Nakatani also said that the SDF law should be amended so the forces can play a larger role in defending US military bases in Japan against possible terrorism, which is primarily the job of police under current laws.

The Asahi Shimbun English edition (“SDF MAY TRANPORT ARMS,” Tokyo, 09/21/01) reported that the Japanese government is planning the legislation to allow the SDF to supply the US military with arms and ammunition for a strike against the terrorists. The bill, designed to outline measures for cooperation with the US, will also allow SDF personnel to fuel and maintain aircraft embarking on strategic operations. There is, however, a possibility that SDF personnel supplying arms and ammunition to US forces could find themselves having to resort to force. New Komeito, a key element in the ruling coalition, has still not consented to permitting the SDF to use force in conducting logistical operations. The bill’s provisions will also expand the rear-echelon areas in which SDF troops can conduct support operations. The bill would allow the SDF to engage in activities in areas such as Japanese territory, and on the open seas where there is no fighting and the airspace above.

4. Peace Movements in Japan

The Asahi Shimbun English edition (Taro Karasaki, “ANTI-RETALIATION RALLY ATTRACTS 200,” Tokyo, 09/21/01) reported that more than 200 people, including ruling and opposition party lawmakers, joined a rally urging the US to refrain from military retaliation for last week’s terrorist attacks. Academics, lawyers and peace activists joined the 40 lawmakers and 30 aides from the Liberal Democratic Party, Democratic Party of Japan, the Japanese Communist Party and the Social Democratic Party. Participants said that an international court, not a battlefield, should be the venue for a solution. “Military retaliation against organizations and nations allegedly protecting terrorists will only add to the cycle of violence,” said Mizuho Fukushima, an Upper House member of the SDP, the organizer of the event. Participants also criticized Japanese endorsement of US-led strikes as a step toward expanding Japan’s military capacity.

The NAPSNet Daily Report aims to serve as a forum for dialogue and exchange among peace and security specialists. Conventions for readers and a list of acronyms and abbreviations are available to all recipients. For descriptions of the world wide web sites used to gather information for this report, or for more information on web sites with related information, see the collection of other NAPSNet resources.
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Produced by the Nautilus Institute for Security and Sustainable Development in partnership with:
International Policy Studies Institute Seoul, Republic of Korea
Center for American Studies,
Fudan University, Shanghai, People’s Republic of China
International Peace Research Institute (PRIME),
Meiji Gakuin University, Tokyo, Japan
Monash Asia Institute,
Monash University, Clayton, Australia

Gee Gee Wong: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Timothy L. Savage: napsnet@nautilus.org
Berkeley, California, United States

Kim Hee-sun: khs688@hotmail.com
Seoul, Republic of Korea

Hibiki Yamaguchi: hibikiy@dh.mbn.or.jp
Tokyo, Japan

Rumiko Seya: rumiko-seya@geocities.co.jp
Tokyo, Japan

Hiroya Takagi: hiroya_takagi@hotmail.com
Tokyo, Japan

Peter Razvin: icipu@glas.apc.org
Moscow, Russian Federation

Yunxia Cao: yunxiac@yahoo.com
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

Dingli Shen: dlshen@fudan.ac.cn
Shanghai, People’s Republic of China

John McKay: John.McKay@adm.monash.edu.au
Clayton, Australia

 


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