Despite persistent frustration in Okinawa over the extraordinary burden created by the large American military presence, the DPJ also repudiated its promise to reduce the U.S. footprint there. Tokyo simply abandoned Okinawans to their fate. The reason is simple. Although Japan possesses the world’s third largest economy, it prefers not to pay for its own defense. Tokyo could and should do more to protect itself and its region, but need not do so as long as Washington is willing to fill the breach.