Iraq: 15 February – Japan – 80% against the war in Japan

There was an anti-war demonstration in Osaka yesterday.  The organisers claimed 1,500. It was a very good demonstration and march.  The atmosphere was good – lots of youth and, surprisingly, a very large percentage of foreigners, mostly westerners but some Asians and people form the Middle East. Those present ranged from the Christians, through a few anarchists and small left groups to, most significantly, largeish contingents from the dockworkers and cement workers as well as a group of homeless workers organized in their own union.

15 February. No to war in Iraq. cwi reports from around the world. Japan.

80% in Japan against war

There was a bigger demonstration in Tokyo, with the papers only quoting "thousands" with no organisers’ or police estimate.

The demonstrations around the world have featured prominently on this morning’s TV programmes.

Generally the mood here is very anti-war, though it isn’t something people talk a lot about.  Generally opinion polls show up to 80% against, with those in support basically wanting a second UN resolution.  There is a split in the ruling party over it: the Prime Minister, Koizumi, supports America, though he never says exactly what he is supporting. It amounts to, "We support the Americans (but we don’t know why)".

Some of the leaders of the Liberal Democratic Party have come out against the war and rearguard support for US forces saying that a war would be devastating for the economy, which it will.  If oil prices rise that will greatly affect the economy here, with higher prices, disrupted international supply routes, cuts in world consumption and, of course, the US will not guarantee Japan access to oil.

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February 2003