Taro Aso apologizes to party fellows, 21 July 2009
Today, I, Taro Aso, decided to dissolve the House of Representatives and seek a popular mandate. [I]mprovident statements I have made caused mistrust among the public and damaged its confidence in politics. […]
This is also with regard to the disunity within the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP). My shortcomings have created mistrust among the public, and as the President of the party, I should like to extend my most sincere apologies.
Thus were the words amplified by apologetic bows the Japanese prime minister uttered at a press conference 21 July. In my ears they sounded like the admission of failure and I expected Aso to announce his resignation the next minute.
Japanese politics of recent years can be read as a history of apologies.