The true face of the samurai - Politics | PoFo

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Perhaps, the Japanese samurai is difficult to get out of balance, as well as to learn from him the true views on this or that question. If the Russian-Japanese talks that took place in May of this year did not reveal the real attitude of the Japanese toward the problem, then the subsequent protests expressed by Tokyo regarding the laying of the fiber optic cable to the Kurils compels us to take a different look at the Kuril issue. The true intentions of the Japanese are revealed not so much by the claim as by the statement of the Secretary-General of the Cabinet of Ministers of Japan, Yoshihide Suga, about "the illegal seizure of islands by Russia".
Such a categorical statement by the Japanese minister says that Tokyo was fed up with a history of compromises that lasted for more than a decade: talks about compromises were made back in the 90's by Mikhail Gorbachev, then continued by Boris Yeltsin, now conducted by Vladimir Putin. In the current situation, when on the eve of the election of the Liberal Democratic Party chairman, the rating of Shinzo Abe as a prime minister is rapidly falling, the issue of transferring the islands would finally solve this problem. It was with the intention to make progress on joint economic activity in the Kuriles that the Japanese prime minister also visited Moscow.
The results of the recent SPIEF "Business Dialogue. Russia-Japan" strengthen the economic ties between the two countries and once again clearly defined the Russian position. Moscow considers it possible to conclude a peace treaty with Tokyo through joint economic activities on the islands of the southern Kuriles and the development of bilateral relations. It is in this connection "conditions are created for visa-free visits to the islands, various restrictions are lifted" for the Japanese, which should also help advance the conclusion of a peace treaty.
Japan has its own view on concluding a peace treaty: Tokyo believes that Moscow "illegally controls" the islands and must "return" them. That is why the development of military infrastructure on Iturupe and Kunashir is seen by the Japanese side as Moscow's unwillingness to give up the islands.
At the same time, Tokyo does not hide its claims to the four islands of the Kuril Ridge. For the sake of this, the Japanese agree to make concessions and wait: as soon as Russia recognizes Japan's sovereignty over all four islands, Tokyo receive two islands immediately, according to the declaration of 1956, while the other two will remain in the temporary use of the Russian Federation, so that in the future - when conditions ripen - Japan also received them back.
Nowadays, the political situation is such that it is impossible to count on receiving all four islands. In this regard, joint economic activity on the islands as a component of economic cooperation between the two countries looks quite a promising step towards the return of the islands. This will allow the Japanese side to gain a foothold in the "disputed territories". Therefore, Tokyo is trying to make progress on joint economic activities in the Kuriles. Following the talks in May this year, the proposal to implement a third Japanese business mission to the islands in the second half of this year was supported.
The Japanese prime minister will have something to please his voters - the Japanese agency Kyodo reported that Putin considered it possible to conclude a peace treaty with Japan. The search for compromises continues.
The true intentions of the Japanese are revealed not so much by the claim as by the statement of the Secretary-General of the Cabinet of Ministers of Japan, Yoshihide Suga, about "the illegal seizure of islands by Russia".

Japan has reversed the position by allowing the joint activities on the Kuril Islands, thus conceding Russian administrative rights of these islands. Yoshihide Suga made the controversial claim almost a decade ago but I'm sure that he has been keeping his big mouth shut, while negotiations are going on, as the press secretary of the Abe Cabinet.

Based on the Soviet framework under the 1956 Soviet–Japanese Joint Declaration, two of four islands will be returned to Japan upon signing a peace treaty and Putin and Abe are working toward the goal. The Japanese have realized that they can gain nothing from sticking to the old nationalist position which is increasingly outdated.

During the 1956 peace talks between Japan and the Soviet Union, the Soviet side proposed to settle the dispute by returning Shikotan and Habomai to Japan. In the final round of the talks, the Japanese side accepted the weakness of its claim to Iturup and Kunashiri and agreed to settle on the return of Shikotan and the Habomai Islands, in exchange for a peace treaty. However, the U.S. government intervened and blocked the deal.

The U.S. warned Japan that a withdrawal of the Japanese claim on the other islands would mean the U.S. would keep Okinawa, causing Japan to refuse these terms. The U.S. had asserted that the San Francisco Peace Treaty "did not determine the sovereignty of the territories renounced by Japan," but that "Japan does not have the right to transfer sovereignty over such territories. Nevertheless, on October 19, 1956, in Moscow, the USSR and Japan signed the Soviet–Japanese Joint Declaration. The Declaration ended the state of war between the Soviet Union and Japan, which technically had still existed between the two countries since August 1945. The Joint Declaration did not settle the Kuril Islands dispute, the resolution of which was postponed until the conclusion of a permanent peace treaty between USSR and Japan.

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