Chinese scrutability

THE Japanese government is furious with China for going ahead with its underground nuclear test, making a complete farce out of the recently-concluded Non-Proliferation Treaty (NPT) conference held in New York. At the conference, the non-nuclear states had agreed to an indefinite extension of the treaty only on the condition that the nuclear 5 nations made sincere efforts to disarm. In a show of anger and disappointment, Japan has announced a sharp cut in its financial aid to China. "As part of our general judgement, our grant aid policy (towards China) will have to be affected," explained chief cabinet secretary Kozo Igrashi. To make matters worse, China conducted the test less than 2 weeks after Japanese prime minister Tomiichi Murayama asked his Chinese counterpart Li Peng to halt nuclear testing during a state visit.