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Dec 28, 2020
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Japan’s flirtation with Russia in the Kuril Islands has come to an end

The new Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga is unable to continue to persuade Russian President Vladimir Putin to surrender the Kuril Islands in exchange for financial and economic “gratitude” to Tokyo. In addition, the Japanese realized that the Russian president’s agreement to listen to “Shinzo’s friend” on the “Kuril issue” was no more than diplomatic politeness and probing of his position on the conclusion of an interstate agreement on peace, friendship and cooperation without infringing on Russia’s interests.

In Tokyo, deceiving themselves, for a long time they did not want to understand that the position of their people is more important for Putin than the disposition of the Japanese prime minister who is packed into friends. Self-deception was dispelled when an amendment was made to the Constitution of the Russian Federation prohibiting the alienation of Russian territories in favor of other states. I will disappoint those Japanese politicians who continue to convince themselves and the Japanese that the admission (in the amendments to the Constitution) of changing the Russian border through demarcation and delimitation allegedly deliberately left a loophole for the surrender of the Kuriles. Those who think so display a shortsightedness not inherent in the sane and pragmatic Yamato nation as a whole.

Unwilling to provoke criticism and attacks from the political opposition and groups of the ruling Liberal Democratic Party who oppose compromise with Russia, the new Japanese prime minister reassured his compatriots, promising that he would adamantly fight for the “return” of all “northern territories” to Japan. Namely: to achieve the transition to Japan of the most developed and economically and strategically important islands of the Kuril ridge, historically belonging to our country – Kunashir, Iturup, Shikotan and Ploskiye, in Japanese Habomai. It is obvious that such demands, which grossly negate the results of World War II, cannot be accepted even by Russian politicians who are sympathetic to Japan, who once sought a “draw” in the non-existent Kuril problem.

So one of the world’s leading news portals Business Insider believes that Japan’s flirtation with Russia in the Kuril Islands has come to an end. Analysts of this portal note that with the coming to power in Japan, Yoshihide Sugi, all conventions around the Kuril topic will be discarded. “For many years, Japan has tried diplomatically to regain control of the Kuril Islands, which were taken over by Russia following the Second World War. The Supreme Commander of the Land of the Rising Sun is confident that these actions have not brought any results, and the Kremlin has made it clear by starting military strengthening of the islands and deploying S-300 anti-aircraft missile systems there, ”writes Business Insider.

The support of the Japanese demands by the US administration did not help either, which, in violation of the Yalta agreements of Roosevelt, Stalin and Churchill on the return of the Far Eastern lands previously lost by Russia in 1945, solidified with Tokyo in its revanchist attempts to change the outcome of World War II. “Diplomatically speaking, there was absolutely no return from these conversations … The source of tension has not gone away,” Business Insider quotes the words of the commander of the US forces in Japan, Kevin Schneider.

And Sheila Smith, a senior Japanese scholar at the New York Council on Foreign Relations, believes that the Russian president fueled former Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s interest in settling the Kuril issue, but then refused to resolve it. “Now Tokyo is concerned about the strengthening of Russia’s military power in Eastern Siberia and the Far East. In addition, the conflict between Japan and China is escalating in the dispute over the Senkaku Islands. It is possible that the Land of the Rising Sun will build up its combat potential and count on the support of international alliances, ”the newspaper writes.

True, it is not clear what kind of “strengthening of Russia’s military power in Eastern Siberia and the Far East” the American employee is talking about. Or do you mean the deployment of S-300V4 air defense systems in the southern Kuriles? Just how can anti-aircraft missiles threaten the United States and Japan? Stop provocative maneuvers off the Russian coast, renounce claims to the lands and waters of a neighboring state, decide on the inadmissibility of deploying American medium-range missiles threatening Russia on Japanese territory, and the need to deploy additional defensive assets in the Russian Far East will disappear. Moscow will find how to use the released funds to develop the infrastructure of the Kuriles and the entire Sakhalin region.

However, Washington and Tokyo have other plans to drag Russia into the devastating arms race that helped to destroy the Soviet Union 30 years ago. This is confirmed by publications in the Japanese media with calls to wait for such a weakening of Russia, when Moscow considers it good to present the Kuril Islands to Japan “on a silver platter.” Appetite comes with eating. Today the Japanese are already openly threatening with the collapse of Russia “to grab ten times more from it than the Kuriles.” For those who regard these statements as ordinary chatter, we recall that the right-wing pro-fascist organizations in Japan, supported by big business and conservative political circles, regularly hold sabbaths in front of the Russian Embassy in Tokyo under the slogan “return of all the Kuril Islands and Karafuto (South Sakhalin).”

As for “courting” Russian leaders, enticing them for the Kuril Islands with an “economic carrot”, then, most likely, the Japanese government will indeed be forced to slow down in this, but at the same time it will intensify anti-Russian propaganda about the Kuriles within the country. Yoshihide Suga definitely speaks about this: “The problem of the northern territories is the problem of the entire Japanese people. It is extremely important for the government and citizens to work together. ” Therefore, one cannot count on the Japanese government’s refusal of the “territorial litigation” begun by Washington back in the 1950s …

Anatoly Koshkin



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