Global Research has a very interesting article about the rise of authoritarianism in Japan:
Saul Takahashi. 2016. Japan's Descent into Authoritarianism. Global Research, August 14, 2016 http://www.globalresearch.ca/japans-descent-into-authoritarianism/5540977
Recently, Japan's Emperor Akihito has made veiled comments that are being interpreted as coded resistance to growing militancy. I applaud his efforts for peace in the context of growing Japanese militancy under Abe. Here is an interesting discussion:
Bloomberg View: Emperor Akihito plays defense on Japan’s constitution. Bloomberg, August 10, 2016, https://www.bloomberg.com/view/articles/2016-08-10/emperor-akihito-plays-defense-on-japan-s-constitution
Now Akihito has cast a shadow over the prime minister’s cherished plan to change Japan’s constitution, which is currently based largely on a blueprint created by U.S. occupation officials. The emperor’s speech, coming shortly after Abe’s LDP won the votes necessary to pass a revision, has been interpreted as a coded pushback, and not just to Abe’s quest to revise Article 9, under which Japan renounced war and the creation or use of military forces.
Akihito referred many times, for instance, to his symbolic role, which the LDP’s plan would change — to make the emperor again the “head of state” and exempt him from having to uphold the constitution.
The LDP draft constitution deletes an article on the universality of human rights; specifies that the exercise of rights shall “not infringe the public interest and public order”; and invokes citizens’ responsibilities and duties, including respect for the flag and the national anthem. (At a garden party in 2004, the emperor famously scolded a bureaucrat for arguing that teachers should stand facing the flag and sing the national anthem.)
The draft constitution also grants the government more powers in emergencies and dabbles in social engineering by extolling family values. More fundamentally, the LDP’s proposed changes would make it easier to revise the constitution in the futureConstitutional revisionism aimed at expanding war powers coupled with increased tensions in the South China Sea are together alarming indicators of encroaching war with China and/or Russia.
We are entering an epoch when the crazies are again entirely running the show...
David C. Gompert, Astrid Cevallos, and Cristina L. Garafola. War with China (2016).Thinking Through the Unthinkable. Rand Corporation, http://www.rand.org/pubs/research_reports/RR1140.html