Relapse of chronic disease! What impact will Abes announcement of resignation have on Japanese society and politics?

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 Relapse of chronic disease! What impact will Abes announcement of resignation have on Japanese society and politics?


On August 6, Shinzo Abe, Prime Minister of Japan, delivered a speech at a commemorative event in Hiroshima, Japan. Xinhua News Agency (photo provided by Hiroshima City)

recommit the same error

According to Kyodo News Agency and other Japanese media reports, Abe indicated his intention to resign at the LDP leadership meeting on the afternoon of 28th, and then made the same statement at the cabinet meeting. Later in the day, he met with reporters at the prime ministers residence and officially announced his decision and reasons for his resignation.

Abe said he decided to resign because of a relapse of chronic ulcerative enteritis, which will require intensive treatment for some time to come.

This scene seems familiar. On September 12, 2007, Abe, who took office only 366 days ago, suddenly announced his resignation because of ulcerative enteritis.

Shortly before announcing his second resignation on the 28th, Abe just set a record for the longest consecutive term as prime minister. As of August 24, Abe has been in office for 2799 days since he became Prime Minister for the second time at the end of 2012, surpassing the record of 2798 days held by his uncle and former Prime Minister Rongzuo Sato. Earlier, Abe overtook former Prime Minister guitaro in November last year to become the longest serving prime minister in Japanese history.

It is reasonable and unexpected that Abe suddenly announced his resignation again. Abe has always regarded his sudden resignation in 2007 as an insult to his political career. Previously, most Japanese public opinion believed that Abe would continue to be prime minister until the end of his term as president of the Liberal Democratic Party in September next year. The recurrence of the political tragedy is likely to be a relapse of chronic diseases. The situation is not optimistic, and the physical condition can no longer bear the busy government affairs.

Political reshuffle

The first concern is who will replace Abe?

On September 20, 2018, Shinzo Abe (right), Prime Minister of Japan, who has been re elected president of the LDP, raised his hands together with Ishibashi on September 20, 2018. (Photo by Du Xiaoyi, Xinhua News Agency)

At present, the more competitive LDP government in the post Abe era should include: Shi bomao, the former Secretary General of the LDP; Mr. Ishida, the former foreign minister and director of the LDPs administrative investigation; Kan Yiwei, Abes long-term political ally and Chief Cabinet Secretary; Mao mu minchong, the foreign minister; ponmei Inada, Acting Secretary General of the Liberal Democratic Party; and taro Kono, the defense minister. In addition, Junichiro Koizumi, the son of former Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi and environment minister, also has some influence.

Among them, as Abes biggest opponent in the party, Shi pengmao once surpassed Abe in the latest poll. Shi Po has not only served as Minister of defense, Minister of agriculture, forestry and Fisheries and other cabinet posts, but also served as Secretary General of the Liberal Democratic Party and other important positions in the party. He once challenged Abe in the election of the president of the LDP. However, due to the lack of strength of the faction led by him and the difficulty in obtaining the support of other factions, he failed to succeed. According to a poll released by Kyodo News Agency on the 23rd, 23.3% of the respondents thought that Shi Po was suitable for the next prime minister, far higher than 11.0% of Abe, who came second.

Abes sudden resignation this time has brought a lot of confusion and passivity to the LDP, and will greatly reduce his influence in the struggle for successor in the party. This will help Ishi to win more support within the party.

In addition, after Abes resignation, all factions in the LDP may undergo major reshuffle and reorganization, which will add a lot of uncertainty to the Japanese political arena.

Leave a suspense

Abes long-term governance has left a strong mark on Japans politics and society. Abes passing away with the crown brings a lot of suspense about the future trend of Japans domestic and foreign affairs.

In terms of economy, under the impact of the new epidemic situation, the accumulated achievements of abenomics for many years have basically disappeared. Data released by the Japanese government in August showed that Japans economy fell by 7.8% month on month in the second quarter of this year, with an annual rate of 27.8%, the largest decline since comparable data were available. So far, Japans economy has been declining for three consecutive quarters. Analysts believe that Japans economic recovery process is slow, it is difficult to achieve V-shaped recovery.

In terms of diplomacy, Abes long cherished diplomacy with Russia and North Korea has not made a breakthrough, while the relations between Japan and South Korea have been depressed for a long time due to issues such as comfort women, labor and trade ban. Abes most proud diplomacy to the United States also faces a lot of uncertainty because of the unpredictable outcome of the US election this year.

At the social level, Japans new crown epidemic continues to have a low fever. As of the 27th, more than 60000 cases have been confirmed in Japan. The Tokyo Olympics have been postponed to next summer, but the outlook remains uncertain.

On the political level, it is not ruled out that Japans political situation may undergo greater changes. The time for the dissolution of the house of representatives for general election can only be postponed until October next year, when the term of the current house of Representatives expires. If the LDPs internal turmoil continues, and the opposition party gathers its strength through reorganization, the future ruling prospect of the LDP will be affected no matter what the election result is.

(function(){( window.slotbydup=window .slotbydup||[]).push({id:u5811557,container:ssp_ 5811557, async:true }Source: Xinhua viewpoint editor in charge: Liu Xiaowu_ NN4113