Tower Center Faculty Fellow, Hiroki Takeuchi, Comments on Resignation of Japan’s PM

Professor Hiroki Takeuchi was quoted in USA Today about the resignation of Hatoyama.

The eight-month process of trying, but failing, to move the U.S. base, against strong Washington opposition, “gave the public the impression that Hatoyama couldn’t make a decision by himself,” said Hiroki Takeuchi, a Japanese politics expert at Southern Methodist University, Dallas.

His Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) “promised many things, and tried to do everything, and gave the false expectations that they could do everything,” Takeuchi said.

Ahead of elections for Japan’s upper house next month, many DPJ politicians pressured him to resign, Takeuchi added. “They said with Hatoyama as prime minister they couldn’t get elected.”

On the Okinawa base, Hatoyama “complicated this issue and had a negative impact on U.S.-Japan relations,” Takeuchi said. Overall, “the Japanese public supports the U.S. presence and agrees with the idea that, due to the U.S. military presence, Japan’s national security is maintained,” but Okinawans remain opposed to any U.S. military presence on their island, he said.

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Japan’s PM resigns after failure to move U.S. base –