Ozawa “Buddies Up” with the American Ambassador

Ichiro Ozawa was the main candidate for The Democratic Party of Japan, leading up to the election in September. Then leading up the summer he was rocked by a scandal that put his secretary potentially embezzling funds that he shouldn’t have been embezzling. He resigned, and the now current Prime Minister, Hatoyama, took over the Democratic Party of Japan, and ended up winning the prize of Prime Minister. The election was historic for Japan, in its 50 year history since WWII this was the first time the Democratic Party of Japan (DPJ) had taken the reigns of power from the Liberal Democratic Party, or (LDP).

Nevertheless, Ozawa-san has managed to hold onto power, both behind the scenes and as now the Secretary General of the Democratic Party of Japan. Each newspaper had a different take on Ozawa-san this morning and his meeting with the American ambassador to Japan, John Roos.

AsahiWe should be frank with each other.” The Asahi painted the meeting with the American Ambassador, John Roos, as a tough yet honest discussion. Sources within the DPJ, according to the Asahi, claimed that Ozawa exchanged opinions with the Ambassador about trade frictions during the LDP era. Ozawa-san said to the ambassador, “If America has an issues, I want you to clearly state them. Japan should also frankly state their opinions in return.”

YomiuriOver a drink, let’s talk about the past election.” The Yomiuri’s interpretation of the meeting between Ozawa and Roos was one of friendship, not one of frank speaking. They also had a different take on what Ozawa-san said to John Roos when he asked “If America has an issues, I would appreciate if you could you say them.” The Yomuri used “言ってもらいたい instead of the more direct form, 言ってほしい.

In the Yomiuri not just the language was different, but also what they talked about was apparently friendlier. Ozawa said “Even when I meet the American Ambassador, I can’t really say political things.” Ozawa then went on to say “I commend the majority the Democratic Party in the US has obtained. I also have experience with running a campaign, let’s grab a drink sometime and discuss it.”

NikkeiA new strand of the virus hospitalizes 445 people.” The Nikkei actually didn’t report on the meeting between the American Ambassador and Ozawa. This could partly be reflective of their lack of support for the new administration…

They instead talked about the Swine Flu, and the surprising impact it has had in the past week. 445 people were hospitalized, and a staggering 8,534 schools were closed due to the threat of flu. Over 50% of those schools were elementary, where as about 25% were middle schools.