This is an ex-faction!

Speaking of predictions, the destruction of the Machimura faction is proceeding apace.Before the LDP's September election, I asked whether anyone thinks that "the Machimura faction, that 89-member monster of a faction that sits at the intersection of the LDP's divisions between 'neo-liberal' reformers, party leaders, and ideological conservatives, will survive this party election."Events appear to …

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Japanese boots, Afghan ground?

In the Fukuda government's continuing quest to determine its strategy in regard to the time-limited MSDF refueling mission in the Indian Ocean, Machimura Nobutaka, chief cabinet secretary, floated a new idea over the weekend: expanding the Japanese contribution in Afghanistan to include JSDF personnel on the ground. The prime minister addressed Mr. Machimura's remarks the …

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The domestic constraints on Japanese foreign policy

Prime Minister Fukuda, originally scheduled to visit Germany, Britain, and France as well as Russia during the Japanese political world's Golden Week holiday in early May, has changed his plans, announcing that he will be restricting his travels to a trip to Russia 25-27 April to meet with Vladimir Putin and Dmitry Medvedev. The reason …

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