Loose Cannon

Toru Hanai / Reuters

The PM's pump-priming plans have been tried by previous Japanese governments to no avail

Japan's new prime minister, Shinzo Abe, wants his nation to be strong and respected. He is ordering an upgrade of Japan's already sophisticated military. He wants to change the pacifist constitution to allow Japan to be able to use force if necessary. And he has been as belligerent as China's leaders over islands that both sides claim. Yet even as Japanese and Chinese aircraft and naval vessels threaten to engage one another, Abe plans to dispatch a peace envoy to Beijing — as he already has to South Korea, another country with which Japan has a similar feud. Yes,...

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