Japanese Constitution and Article 9

"At the root of the controversy is Article Nine of Japan’s constitution and whether the country can exercise the right to collective self-defense. The government’s constitutional interpretation is that the nation has the right, but it cannot be exercised. Article Nine prohibits Japan from taking part in combat operations. "

From: http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Japan/FH27Dh01.html
How do you change the Japanese Constitution and would the popular vote be for or against dropping the non-combat issue?

IANAJCS (Japanese Constitutional scholar), but five seconds on google tells me this:

Article 96:
Amendments to this Constitution shall be initiated by the Diet, through a concurring vote of two-thirds or more of all the members of each House and shall thereupon be submitted to the people for ratification, which shall require the affirmative vote of a majority of all votes cast thereon, at a special referendum or at such election as the Diet shall specify. 2) Amendments when so ratified shall immediately be promulgated by the Emperor in the name of the people, as an integral part of this Constitution.


Thanks. I guess I could googled that, too. I guess what I’m getting at, would most Japanese be for this change? Or is it still there because that proceedure is difficult to win or people dont want the budget hit that a military would require.

Well, Japan already spends quite a bit on their military ,err Self Defense Force - $42 billion according to the CIA World Factbook, the 5th highest in the world after the US, China, France, & the UK. As a percentage of GDP, their military spending is fairly low though, right on par with Canada.

The left-wing parties all want to protect Article 9, so I don’t see how the LDP (Liberal Democratic Party) can get assemble a coalition to get 2/3 of both houses.

By the way, the Japanese constitution hasn’t been changed at all since it was adopted in 1947. And that’s despite the nearly continuous single-party rule.