JAPAN: Waver Week

Japan's little Premier, Nobuyuki Abe, is a definition of inconsistency. His breakfast begins by being Japanese (bean soup, pickled eggplant, rice) and ends Occidentally (soft-boiled eggs, a glass of milk). His house (suburban, neither big nor small) is typically that of a Japanese military man, but is cluttered by a very unmilitary hobby—scores of canaries and red sparrows in pretty cages. Premier Abe drinks a little but not much, smokes a little but not much, exercises a little but not much. He is a general, but he has never been to war.

Month ago Japan's senior statesmen drew this indecisive character—"blinking,"...

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