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Koizumi Cabinet E-mail Magazine No. 159 (October 14, 2004)

[Lion Heart -- Message from Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi]
(Provisional Translation)

Prime Minister Junichiro KoizumiProfile

If you do it, it will happen

Junichiro Koizumi here.

The extraordinary session of the Diet was convened on October 12.

In the general policy speech on the first day of the extraordinary Diet session, I quoted a line from the school song of Saibi High School of Ehime Prefecture that performed excellently in both the spring and summer All-Japan Senior High School Baseball Championship Tournaments. "'If you do it, it will happen' is a magic phrase for us."

Pessimism can bring nothing but more pessimism. I intended to convey to the people of Japan that we should continue to make efforts without getting downcast, despite the difficulties we may face. We should not give in to hardships, but with courage change crises into new opportunities. Even if we fail, we should see failure as one more step along the road to success. I wanted everyone to realize my strong determination for us to build a bright future for Japan with courage and pride.

Since my appointment as prime minister, I have steadfastly advanced reforms under the policies of "leave to the private sector what it can do" and "leave to the localities what they can do," and finally we are seeing the "buds of reform" beginning to sprout. We are now entering a crucial time of whether we can nurture these "buds of reform" into a "large tree." I will now move to realize the privatization of the postal services and the reform package of three issues that promote subsidy reform, transfer of tax sources and review of local allocation tax.

Some criticisms have been voiced that I have nothing new to say and am becoming repetitious. I would respond to such criticism by saying that it is my responsibility and duty to realize the policies I have laid out to date. To do that it is essential that I do not change those words that I originally said.

The high school baseball players, the athletes who performed so marvelously at the Athens Olympic Games and Paralympics, all of whom I mentioned in my general policy speech, or Major League player Ichiro Suzuki who has broken the Major League record for hits in one season and Hideki Matsui who is playing hard for his team's victory in the World Series Championship -- whenever I watch their magnificent performances, I find myself thinking of the severe training and relentless way in which they must have devoted themselves to achieving their goals, and of their mental fortitude in bearing up to unimaginable pressure. It can also not be forgotten that these athletes are the role models for a whole new generation of athletes, who are continuing with their own efforts as they dream of some day being in the spotlight themselves.

It is a source of great pride for me that Japanese people and Japanese descendents around the globe are making major contributions in their local communities and are gaining trust and high praise from the people of those countries. Such people include the Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteers (JOCV), the members of the Self-Defense Forces providing humanitarian and reconstruction assistance to Iraq and conducting peacekeeping operation (PKO) activities, and the descendents of Japanese nationals who emigrated to Brazil and Mexico, which I visited in September, who endured countless difficulties in a foreign land with a different climate, language and customs. In addition, wherever I go on overseas visits, I encounter people working in Japanese companies that play a part in supporting the local economy of the country where they are located.

The extraordinary session of the Diet is now starting. I would like to carry out the reforms taking the magic phrase of 'If you do it, it will happen' to heart.

* The title of this column "Lion Heart" is a reference to the Prime Minister's lion-like hairstyle and his unbending determination to advance structural reform.

[What's up around the Prime Minister]

- Chairperson of the Commission of the African Union (AU) Pays Courtesy Call on Prime Minister (October 13, 2004)
Prime Minister Koizumi and Chairperson Konare agreed that concrete measures would be taken with a view to implementing the "Japan-AU Policy Dialogue" next spring.

- Japan-Switzerland Summit Meeting (October 12, 2004)
Prime Minister Koizumi held a meeting with Mr. Joseph Deiss, the President of the Swiss Confederation.

- General Policy Speech to the 161st Session of the Diet (October 12, 2004)
Prime Minister Koizumi delivered a general policy speech to the 161st session of the Diet.

- Japan-Viet Nam Summit Meeting (October 10, 2004)
Prime Minister Koizumi held a meeting with Mr. Phan Van Khai, the Prime Minister of the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam.

- The Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) (October 7 to 9, 2004)
Prime Minister Koizumi attended the Fifth Asia-Europe Meeting in Hanoi, the Socialist Republic of Viet Nam.

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General Editor: Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi
Chief Editor: Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Hiroyuki Hosoda
Publication: Cabinet Public Relations Office
1-6-1 Nagata-cho, Chiyoda-ku, Tokyo 100-8968, Japan

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