December 26, 2012

Ball Is in China's Court After Abe's Win

Frank Ching, China Post

AP Photo

Shinzo Abe, widely viewed as a right-wing nationalist, assumes office this week as prime minister of Japan, the seventh time the country's leadership has changed hands in six years and his second turn at the helm since 2007. 

The election manifesto of Abe's party, the Liberal Democrats, contained such proposals as changing the constitution so Japan can exercise its right to collective self-defense. It also took strong positions on territorial disputes with the country's neighbors.


Abe himself took a hawkish stance, insisting for example that the Senkaku islands, also claimed by China, are “Japan's inherent territory.”


However, indications are that his actions as prime minister won't reflect campaign rhetoric.


For one...

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TAGGED: Japan, China, Shinzo Abe, Asia


Though Abe paid lip service to improving China-Japan relations after the election, no specific proposals have been made by Japanese political parties to mend relations with Japan's neighbors. And his words so far on the islands... more ››
December 18, 2012
Is Japan's Abe Going to Pick a Fight with China?
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Some of the challenges Japan faces are indeed formidable. And its voters, to their credit, are increasingly impatient with leaders who can’t meet them. That’s what democracy is all about. It’s now Abe’s turn. more ››
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Boxed in, Japan Swings Right
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Henry Kissinger once famously remarked that a great power does not retreat forever. This is a particularly apt comment on China's and South Korea's contributions to the outcome of last weekend's elections in Japan. more ››
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