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Nonaka raps Koizumi for moving Japan wrong

Former LDP Secretary General Hiromu Nonaka said in a speech in Kyoto, "It's wrong to have the same policy thinking as that during the Persian Gulf War" when Japan came under fire for its slow response to the global campaign to help drive Iraq out of Kuwait.

"I am worried the current policy of making Japan visible and mobilizing the Self-Defense Forces is moving our country in the wrong direction," he said.

Nonaka also criticized the Foreign Ministry for prodding the SDF to deploy ostensibly to divert the public's attention from a series of scandals.

He also blasted uniformed officers at the Defense Agency for taking advantage of the proactive sentiment.

"I cannot condone (them) for arranging the protection of the U.S. aircraft carrier (Kitty Hawk) with the escort of Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF) ships and trying to deploy an Aegis destroyer (to the Indian Ocean)."

Nonaka said, "It's my responsibility to say what I should say, even if I'm hated and killed." (Kyodo News)

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