With Ozawa, there’s no easy option

Ozawa Ichiro has escaped indictment by the Tokyo Public Prosecutors Office again. Once again, his former secretaries were not quite so lucky, with three, including sitting Diet member Ishikawa Tomohiro, being indicted for political funds violations.Michael Cucek rightly points to the gross misconduct of the PPO in its Ahab-like pursuit of Ozawa — and perhaps …

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Why the Hatoyama government matters

As the Hatoyama government's approval numbers have faltered and more recently plummeted, as reports about the inappropriately large role being played by Ozawa Ichiro in the government (despite not being a cabinet minister) have grown, as doubts about Hatoyama Yukio's abilities as a leader have deepened, and as the court of public opinion internationally has …

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Ozawa whips the DPJ and the Diet into shape

Speaking at a convention of the Osaka branch of the DPJ, Chief Cabinet Secretary Hirano Hirofumi spoke succinctly of the role of the DPJ's backbenchers in the new government. Hirano said that not only is it unnecessary for DPJ backbenchers to ask questions in Diet proceedings, but also the DPJ's many first-term Diet members should …

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An important week for the Hatoyama government

Prime Minister Hatoyama Yukio has returned to Japan after what appears to have been a successful introduction to the world in New York and Pittsburgh last week. The visit to the US may not have accomplished much in practical terms, but it did have symbolic importance, showing that the Hatoyama government will not shy away …

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The strengths and weakness of Mr. Hatoyama’s government

After meeting with Ozawa Ichiro Monday, it appears that Hatoyama Yukio will get Fujii Hirohisa as his finance minister after all. The party's executive board — comprised of the inner circle of party leaders, including Hatoyama, Ozawa, Kan Naoto, and Okada Katsuya — has approved the roster, which will now go before the party's board …

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