Defense Minister Ishiba Considers Japan's Options in UFO Attack
By Stuart Biggs
Dec. 21 (Bloomberg) -- Japan's Defense Minister Shigeru Ishiba is considering how his Self-Defense Forces could respond to an attack by space aliens while adhering to limits on military action under the country's war-renouncing Constitution.
Ishiba is the second Cabinet member to profess his belief in unidentified flying objects after Chief Cabinet Secretary Nobutaka Machimura suggested on Dec. 18 they are the only explanation for ``unexplainable'' things like the Nazca Lines, pre-Columbian etchings in the desert south of Lima, Peru.
Ishiba said yesterday a Japanese military response, such as those in the Godzilla movie series, would require legal review and said he is studying ways Japan could deal with an attack. Ishiba said his comments represent a ``personal view,'' and not Defense Ministry policy, according to the transcript of the press conference published on the ministry's Web Site.
`There are no grounds for us to deny there are unidentified flying objects and some life-form that controls them,'' Ishiba said. ``Few discussions have been held on what the legal grounds are'' for a military response.
Ishiba said that, if the aliens arrived in Japan in peace, a military response would not be legal under the terms of Japan's pacifist Constitution. He also said he was concerned about communication difficulties if a UFO landed.
``If they descended, saying `People of the Earth, let's make friends,' it would not be considered an urgent, unjust attack on our country,'' he said. ``How can we convey our intentions if they don't understand what we are saying?''
Japanese politicians, and the local media's, recent interest in UFOs stems from a parliamentary question from opposition lawmaker Ryuji Yamane about the government's policy on UFOs. The government is not doing any UFO research or preparing for a response if UFOs fly over Japan, according to a report by Kyodo News on Dec 18.
``I haven't seen one myself,'' Japan's Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda said when asked by reporters about UFOs on Dec. 18.