Why did Hatoyama go after Futenma first?

With little surprise, the Hatoyama government has decided to postpone a decision on the future of Futenma, after alienating both the Okinawan people and the US government with its indecisiveness on the issue. Reuters reports that after months of treating the end of May as the deadline for solving the dispute, the government has announced …

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Why Hatoyama is failing on Futenma

Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio returned home to Japan Wednesday after attending the Nuclear summit in Washington hosted by US President Barack Obama. Whatever significance the summit had for Obama's diplomatic agenda, as far as US-Japan relations are concerned nukes were overshadowed by Futenma. Hatoyama's self-imposed deadline of resolving the dispute by May is approaching, and …

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Can the DPJ legislate a new relationship with the bureaucracy?

On Tuesday, the House of Representatives began debate on the Hatoyama cabinet's bill revising the National Civil Service Law, the first of three cabinet bills intended to introduce political leadership to be considered in the Diet (the others being bills establishing the national strategy bureau and increasing the number of sub-cabinet political appointees).If passed, the …

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A terrible idea from DPJ backbenchers, quickly nixed

On Wednesday Ubukata Yukio, the deputy secretary-general, Tanaka Makiko, Koizumi Junichiro's controversial foreign minister who joined the DPJ last year, and other DPJ Diet members proposed to Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio and DPJ secretary-general Ozawa Ichiro that the party establish a new policy research arm to replace the policy research council that closed shop when …

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