Tag Archives: Shinzo Abe

Now it’s POTUS who’s flinging around information

I’m confused … apparently.

Hillary Rodham Clinton was pilloried and pounded because of her “careless” use of e-mails while served as secretary of state. Republicans wanted to “lock her up!” because she used a personal e-mail server to conduct official¬†State Department¬†business.

Leading the “lock her up!” chorus was none other than the guy who’d become president of the United States, Donald John Trump.

Now there’s this: Trump takes Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to his glitzy Florida estate and then, allegedly, starts discussing national security matters regarding North Korea in front of unclassified estate staff. Trump reportedly has left sensitive material laying around where just about anyone can get their hands on it.

Where is the outrage over this sloppy handling of material that should be seen only by those with the highest level of security clearances.

Trump and Abe also reportedly were talking openly about how the United States and Japan should respond to North Korea’s launch of a ballistic missile into the Sea of Japan.

Didn’t the president get some advice during his presidential security briefings about the dangers of blabbing too loosely about this kind of thing? Oh, wait! He said he didn’t need to be briefed regularly by his national security team. Maybe the spooks who advise the president on these matters never got around to telling him about that stuff.

I’m now waiting to hear from previously outraged Republicans about whether the president of the United States of America is doing something far worse than the things they accused his 2016 campaign opponent of doing.

No criticism of Trump golf outings

I hereby make a solemn vow: I will not criticize Donald J. Trump for playing golf while he serves as president of the United States of America.

Obama’s immediate predecessor, Barack Obama, took some unfair hits from critics who bitched about his golf outings. Why, they couldn’t understand why the president was playing golf while the world was spinning out of control all around him.

I defended Obama. He is never not the president, I said.

I’ll say the same thing about the guy who succeeded him. Trump took Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to his Florida estate for a round of golf, a few laughs — and maybe even some high-level diplomacy.

Trump might get criticized by some. Not from me.

Hey, fair is fair.

Presidents deserve time off away from the hustle and bustle of the Oval Office. Even this one.

No apology for attack, but still a profound promise

As the son of a gallant World War II veteran who jumped into the fight just weeks after a treacherous attack against the United States, I was hoping for an apology.

It didn’t come. Instead, the prime minister of Japan — the nation that yanked us into a global bloodbath — offered something that came pretty close to an apology.

Shinzo Abe visited the USS Arizona Memorial in Honolulu as the guest of President Obama, who is on vacation there with his family. He spoke of the “precious souls” who died during the Japanese air attack on our naval and air forces on Dec. 7, 1941.

He vowed that Japan never again would go to war. Abe offered a statement of condolence that he said, in effect, will never end.


The prime minister also expressed his gratitude for the generosity that Americans have extended to his people in the years since the “date which will live in infamy.”

“On behalf of the Japanese people, I hereby wish to express once again my heartfelt gratitude to the United States and to the world for the tolerance extended to Japan,” Abe said.

An actual apology would have been the best outcome of this first-ever visit to Pearl Harbor by a Japanese head of government.

This American, though, will accept the prime minister’s statement of eternal condolence.

No apology coming for Pearl Harbor attack? It should


That settles that issue, I guess.

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is coming to the United States late this month for a state visit with President Obama.

He won’t apologize for what his forebears did on Dec. 7, 1941. You see, Abe will be at the place where the United States was drawn into World War II. He’ll visit Pearl Harbor, Hawaii. He’ll likely tour the USS Arizona Memorial. He’ll get to hear about the suffering brought to the men who are entombed in the shattered remains of the ship that still rest at the bottom of the harbor.

As the Associated Press reported: Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga said that ‘the purpose of the upcoming visit is to pay respects for the war dead and not to offer an apology.'”

Frankly, I wish he would at least offer an expression of regret.

We’ll learn in due course whether he changes his mind.

President Obama visited Hiroshima, Japan earlier this year. He didn’t apologize, either, for the atomic bomb that President Truman ordered dropped on that city. Then again, I don’t believe an apology — in that instance — was warranted. The Japanese started the fight with the sneak attack on our forces at Pearl Harbor; we finished it with the bombs dropped on Hiroshima and, three days later, on Nagasaki.

Abe’s circumstance, of course, is much different. He represents a government that in an earlier era talked to American diplomats about seeking peace while plotting an act of war.

He need not grovel. He need not beg for forgiveness. Indeed, U.S.-Japan relations are stronger than ever at this moment seven decades after¬†the two nations’ forces fought each other to the death throughout the Pacific Theater of Operations.


He’ll emphasize the “reconciliation” that has occurred. That’s fine. We all know that it is strong.

The act of war that precipitated the era of good feelings that followed, however, ought to require a statement of contrition from the leader of the government that caused all that senseless carnage in the first place.

V-J Day plus 70: Japan says it’s sorry

Shinzo Abe

Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said it once again this week.

Japan has expressed profound grief and remorse for the events that led to and included all that happened during World War II.

Japan has noted the end of the great war. The prime minister apologized on behalf of his government. He also noted that the vast majority of Japanese citizens were born after World War II and that his nation shouldn’t be expected to keep apologizing for the deeds of its forebears.

I get what the prime minister is trying to say. As the son of a World War II veteran who had served in the European Theater before being reassigned to the Pacific Theater, I appreciate the prime minister’s expression of remorse and grief.

He’s not alone, of course. Aging Japanese war veterans also have been seeking forgiveness for their actions in World War II. They travel to Pearl Harbor, Hawaii to pay their respects at the Battleship Arizona Memorial, where more than 1,000 American seamen are interred where their ship sank during the sneak attack on Dec. 7, 1941.

The coverage of Abe’s speech, though, takes note of the absence of a “new apology.” It makes me wonder: How many times and how many ways must a leader of a foreign government with which we once were at war apologize?

I believe Prime Minister Abe’s latest apology speaks quite eloquently.


Condemnations pouring out over latest ISIL atrocity

President Obama called it “heinous.” Secretary of State John Kerry called it “barbaric.” Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe called it a “cruel and despicable act of terrorism.”

The object of this worldwide scorn once again is the Islamic State, which reportedly beheaded a captured Japanese journalist supposedly in “retaliation” for Japan’s assistance in the international fight against these terrorist monsters.


Kenji Goto was murdered because Japan has been sending food and medical supplies to assist the international coalition and to lend aid to those who are suffering from the violence in Iraq and Syria, where ISIL is conducting its reign of terror and destruction.

Japan’s hands are tied in this fight, given that its government is sworn by the treaty it signed at the end of World War II that prohibits it from deploying armed forces overseas. Japan maintains a stout military for national defense purposes only. And that’s an understandable caveat that the Allies placed on Japan, given its own history of ruthlessness and, um, barbarism during WWII.

However, none of that excuses for an instant the fate that apparently befell Kenji Goto and Huruna Yakawa — who was beheaded earlier.

All of this insane ghoulishness only requires that we maintain the fight against these monstrous agents of evil.

ISIL’s appetite for barbarism stretches one’s ability to describe it in strong enough language. Heinous, despicable, barbaric, cruel? Yes, all of those are true, but they don’t go far enough. I’m at a loss to find the appropriate description to hang on these monsters.

They need to die. A painful and excruciating death would suit many of us just fine.