back to article US spied on Japanese PM Abe, Mitsubishi, and so much more

The NSA spied on Japan's prime minister, central bank, finance ministry and major corporations, such as the natural gas division of Mitsubishi, according to documents released today. The targets of the cyber-spying included stealing secrets on US-Japan relations, trade negotiations and climate change policy. Fruits of the …

  1. Smooth Newt

    Encryption and IT security

    It beggars belief that David Cameron wants to weaken encryption in the UK. Whilst the NSA might not be targetting UK economic interests in the same way as they are here (at least that's what they probably tell the British), they are not the only state actor which engages in this sort of well resourced industrial and economic espionage.

    1. Martin Gregorie Silver badge

      Re: Encryption and IT security

      Why does that beggar belief?

      Cameron, Millibrand and Obama are all identikit Blair clones: they all have very similar backgrounds and education, think the same way and do the same things for much the same reasons.

    2. Mark 85 Silver badge

      Re: Encryption and IT security

      We have the same idiots in charge here in the States.. backdoor to encryption to no encryption. Yet.. they get angry when state actors (allegedly) hack government computers. But...there's the hope, that passing a law will stop such things.. according to them.

  2. Hollerith 1

    Ha ha ha ha ha

    "It's unclear whether or not the spying remains ongoing"

    Whatcha think? Could it be??!!??

  3. Trainee grumpy old ****
    Trollface

    Someone's got to say it:

    They were just checking what was under the kimono.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Completely understandable

    It’s essential to spy on your friends to confirm that they are trustworthy and not secretly your enemies and, should the spying become known and the trust relationship be broken, nothing is lost when your friends definitely do become enemies, since you are already spying on them and don’t have to start from scratch, although it might be preferable to stop spying on them when they become enemies as that might spoil any chances of making friends with the former friends who are now enemies (albeit they may have secretly been enemies all along, pretending to be friends in the past and planning to do so again in future) so, on the other hand, better to be safe than sorry, and just spy on everybody whether known friends who may be secret foes or known foes who may become new friends .

    1. Bleu

      Re: Completely understandable

      Up from me Gaspard, very funny even if you were being completely serious, which I doubt!

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Completely understandable

        Drat - my cover has been blown!

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What imbeciles

    ...to not understand that all capable countries spy on everyone to protect their own national interest. Amazingly some folks don't understand the need to do this.

    1. This post has been deleted by its author

    2. asdf Silver badge

      Re: What imbeciles

      Also amazingly is how some folks think spying on our own population with little oversight is a good idea or weakening global cyber security to do so is an even better idea.

  6. Daggerchild Silver badge

    Odd

    Why is climate change such a priority? I thought spookage only cared about security, money, pissing contests and testosterone.

    So are they trying to push climate change forward, or hold it back?

  7. Bleu

    Another howler

    from a Reg. writer.

    'during the administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, which ran from September 2006 until September 2007'

    Mr. Abe, who would also be called far-right or neo-fascist if equal standards were applied by stupid Europeans, is the PM again now.

    Corrected version follows.

    'during the earlier administration of current Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, which ran from September 2006 until September 2007'

  8. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
    Holmes

    A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

    Asian powerhouse

    Adrift Keynesian wreckage, surely?

    1. asdf Silver badge

      Re: A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

      Well compare most of their quality of life measurements to some of the more Friedman like success stories and outside the %1ers they hold up fine. What's killing them for the future even more than the debt is negative growth in population.

      1. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge
        Flame

        Re: A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

        they hold up fine

        Keep deluding yourself. The Krugmanian death pill has been administered: Japan’s Keynesian Demise: A Cautionary Tale For Our Times

        As for Friedman being the opposite of "Lord" Keynes: FUCK NO. Monetarism, Keynesianism - it's all the same to me.

        What's killing them for the future even more than the debt is negative growth in population - This is like saying "What's killing me more than the daily crack dose is my permanent lack of money". Err... yes??

        1. asdf Silver badge

          Re: A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

          Technically one could argue what the Japanese did was far beyond even what most Keynesians would preach and lot of their issues were created in the 1980s with the mother of all bubbles and their culture not being flexible enough to take the medicine they needed (also their closed culture is why they have a population problem as well). I am actually not a huge fan of his theories either but the big danger especially in a rather red state like my own tends to be under investment in public infrastructure such as schools not deficit spending. In general I don't buy the Ron Paul privatize everything kool-aid. His vision leads to Somalia or the wasteland in Mad Max.

          1. Bleu

            Re: A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

            Japan still has great industries, more so in bubble days. Even capsule toys were all made here at that time.

            'mother of all bubbles' seems a good description of the UK and Aus. from what I read. Nothing the world would miss is made there, it is all on stock and real estate. You even allow open buying, no questions, by foreign landlords.

            Sure helps keep the bubble from bursting!

            At what cost to the people?

      2. Bleu

        Re: A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

        You are absolutely wrong. Falling populations in Japan and Korea (South Korea's birth rate is even lower) are not for all good reasons, the magnetism of big cities, unrealistic expectations, huge emphasis on vanity in pop. culture), but the polities in these countries choose not to replace and wipe out the existing populations, which is already happening in many places in Europe (sure, only localities for now).

        I have not seen the latest projections for when the world is to hit 8,000 million, but it will be very soon.

        Big shock to see how quickly it reached 7 from 6,000 million.

        All of the stories from demographers about how it will all level out at 9,000 million and start to fall sometime really soon now were just deluded lies. Fairy tales. Demographers now admit it.

        Economics ideologies based on constant exponential population growth have only one end, a disastrous collapse. What happens when the population crosses 10,000 million and continues to soar?

        What happens to the natural world?

        1. asdf Silver badge

          Re: A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

          >Falling populations in Japan and Korea (South Korea's birth rate is even lower) are not for all good reasons, the magnetism of big cities, unrealistic expectations, huge emphasis on vanity in pop. culture), but the polities in these countries choose not to replace and wipe out the existing populations, which is already happening in many places in Europe (sure, only localities for now).

          Perhaps true but both those closed asian cultures do little to encourage permanent immigration which is one quick way to counteract low native birth rate. Its one of the main reasons why the US does have a healthly growth rate (also due to recent immigrants still having decent birth rates once they get here).

          >What happens when the population crosses 10,000 million and continues to soar?

          >What happens to the natural world?

          I am optimistic technology will give us the breathing room until most of the world reaches that point where it quits having 17 kids each for agri work. We grow so much food now we even are stupid enough to convert it very inefficiently to fuel. At some point technology will also allow us to find other places to colonize.

          1. fajensen Silver badge

            Re: A victim of a pandering book written 100 years ago

            Perhaps true but both those closed asian cultures do little to encourage permanent immigration which is one quick way to counteract low native birth rate.

            However - Immigration is also a sure-fire way to counteract a low crime rate and - some would argue, when immigration is used to push wages down - higher living standards.

            Fewer people means more space and resources available to each person and less to fight over - We don't need more people anywhere. It was in the last century that 1'st world stopped tilling the land by hand and digging stuff out of the earth manually. 3'rd world still does this masses of people people thing, that's why it's the 3'rd world!

            The USA may be "growing" - but - on many of the metrics such as average life expectancy, still-births and whatnot it is performing like the 3'rd world! As one would expect due to frame invariance - popping more babies than one can feed and gainfully employ creates the same misery every where it is tried.

  9. This post has been deleted by its author

  10. Bleu

    What's wrong with a falling population?

    The population of Japan at the end of the shogunate was about 50 million.

    That was sustainable, even without modern technology. It was partly depending on the local lord and samurai (history of peasant revolts is not the million kms from England and France, difference is, they were started against the local lord, not a central government).

    Except in the few cases where they changed (or were used to change) the ruling family, they usually had the same effect, none, but in several places, more enlightened rule.

    Sure, some of the domains were desperately poor, but most were not.

    1. asdf Silver badge

      >What's wrong with a falling population?

      Sounds great on paper but not when humans in general rely on younger people to take care of older people. Very hard on a culture to have the majority of its people not working for any reason. Ask the Arabs what with many of them having populations mostly under 20.

      1. fajensen Silver badge

        If humans rely on younger people to take care of older people then perhaps one should deal with that problem rather than trying something - overpopulation - that never works, unless of course some 3'rd worlder's want to start a war with some 1'st world's armies and therefore need lots of dumb-ass bullet sponges to try and make up for the 100:1 casualty ratio!?

        Joking Aside, The entire Arab mess is exactly what's wrong with population growth outstripping first the needs of society and then the carrying capacity of the economy. Too many people means certain misery for all.

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