Wednesday, September 12, 2007

In Japan, prime minister resigns...

Not just Russia is experiencing some major switch ups in their governments, the Washington Post is reporting that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe resigned. Interestingly enough the article states he was a "walking political corpse" after only one year in the office.

His party, which has dominated Japanese politics since World War II, was crushed in July parliamentary elections, the kind of humiliation that had led previous prime ministers to quit without delay.

But that was just part of Abe's predicament. His judgment in picking a cabinet proved faulty in the extreme, as scandals and ineptitude had pushed four ministers to resign and one to kill himself.

Of special interest is one of the areas of contention within the government of Japan is a refueling station in the Indian Ocean that is used to for the war in Afghanistan.

As recently as last weekend, Abe had said he would do everything in his power to extend the anti-terrorism law that authorizes the floating gas station, which has pumped more than 127 million gallons of fuel, without charge, most of it into U.S. warships.

But the refueling operation had been seized upon here by the Democratic Party of Japan, the opposition group that took control of the upper house of parliament in July. Ending it was a way for the opposition to demonstrate Abe's political weakness.

Now that vote is on hold, so it's not clear if Japan will continue the re-fueling operation or not. Nor would I imagine many people realize that Japan had been fueling the US without charge.


Head Spinner Scott said...

I knew they were fueling us, but not for free. They must be bigger suckers then we are

Lisa Renee said...

I didn't know it was for free either...

Makes me want to check to see if somewhere some one is writing this in as an expense when it's been free.