Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Special Advisor to PM Abe Told to Delete Youtube Video in Which He Says "We Are the Ones Who Are Disappointed with the US"

From Bloomberg News (2/19/2014; part):

Abe Aide Told to Delete Video Criticizing U.S. Over Shrine Issue

An aide to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe was instructed to delete a video in which he expressed disappointment over the U.S. reaction to the Japanese premier’s December visit to a Tokyo war shrine.

Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga told reporters in Tokyo he had directed Seiichi Eto, a member of the upper house of parliament and a special adviser to the prime minister, to delete the video from YouTube because it expressed a personal view rather than the government position.

The U.S. embassy last year issued a statement saying the government was “disappointed” by Abe paying his respects at the Yasukuni Shrine on Dec. 26, adding his action would “exacerbate tensions with Japan’s neighbors.” Animosity with China and South Korea over separate territorial disputes was worsened by Abe’s visit to the shrine, which is seen by many in both countries as a symbol of Japan’s past militarism.

“America said it was disappointed, but we are the ones who are disappointed they said that,” Eto said in a video posted to YouTube on Feb. 16. “Why doesn’t America value its ally Japan?”

Eto went on to say that the U.S. was trying to appease China with its statement.

“You may think the ’disappointed’ statement was directed at Japan, but that’s not the case. They are telling China that they are disappointed. My understanding is that it’s just an excuse they are making to China,” he said.

(Full article at the link)

His youtube video (it is one of his regular video new to his constituents) has already been made "private".

Mr. Seiichi Eto, pictured right, is the one who was sent to the US in October last year as special advisor to Prime Minister Abe to lay the groundwork for Abe's Yasukuni Shrine visit and obtain the understanding from the Obama administration.

In the video which I watched before it became "private", Mr. Eto expressed his puzzlement over the US response. As far as he was concerned, the US understood that Abe wanted to visit the shrine. Mr. Eto said he told the Obama administration officials not to make a big issue out of it even if they wouldn't approve of the visit, and they agreed.

It's interesting that the above Bloomberg article mentions only the US embassy (in Tokyo) that issued the "disappointed" statement, not the State Department (whose spokeswoman told a Chinese reporter to go get a dictionary).


Anonymous said...

OT - When I read posts like this, I can't help thinking about a very good film/documentary about and with Federico Fellini called " I AM A BIG LIAR"
He clearly states it, and doesn't give any kind of explanation, but speaking of his life, work, and other anecdotes, you can get it all. Some kind of a "Prova d'orchestra" of lying, if it were not for such disaster of situations.


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