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Chinese Economy Veers Off CourseKe Long

The Chinese government has intervened to devalue the yuan as concerns heighten over the slowing of the economy. The dilatory pace of serious structural reforms in the state sector is dimming the outlook for China.
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Abe Opens a Door with Carefully Crafted War Anniversary StatementDaniel Sneider

Prime Minister Abe Shinzō’s August 14 statement should be judged, in my view, against two important criteria: whether it shows a genuine effort to reflect upon and draw lessons from Japan’s wartime past; and whether it contributes to the improvement of relations in Northeast Asia and creates opportunities for reconciliation between Japan and China and Korea. The statement advances both of those go…
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The Long Road to Reconciliation in East AsiaKawashima Shin

The seventieth anniversary of the end of World War II is now the subject of much discussion. Here in Japan the media has been full of references to four terms in this connection: “aggression,” “colonial rule,” “deep remorse,” and “apology.” These are key terms regarding Japan’s actions in the years before and during World War II that appeared in the statements issued by Prime Minister Murayama T…
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The Abe Statement: A Balancing Act That Leaves Work to Be DoneAndrew Gordon

The statement issued by the government of Prime Minister Abe Shinzō on the seventieth anniversary of the end of World War II in Asia is far longer than those by Prime Minister Murayama Tomiichi in 1995 and Prime Minister Koizumi Jun’ichirō 10 years later. And despite Abe’s stated desire to focus on the future, the statement overwhelmingly dwells on the past. These two facts reflect how challenging…
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A New Chinatown Emerges in Tokyo’s IkebukuroYamashita Kiyomi

Chinatowns have existed as ethnic enclaves in Japan since the nation opened its borders to the outside world in the mid-nineteenth century. More recently, as Japan and China build closer economic ties, a new Chinatown is taking shape in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro.
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Seventy Years On: The Abe Statement

A day ahead of the August 15, 2015, seventieth anniversary of the end of World War II, Prime Minister Abe Shinzō issued his statement to mark the milestone date. The statement spells out the Abe administration’s historical take on Japan’s role in the war and its seven decades as a pacifist nation since then, touching on the vocabulary many viewed as required in any statement released on this occa…
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Confronting China’s Island-Building CampaignKōda Yōji

Chinese land reclamation efforts in the South China Sea are turning reefs into islands with ports and runways. As China pushes forward with its attempt to establish unilateral sovereignty over the sea, how should Japan respond in coordination with the United States and countries in the region?
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The Okinawa Issue and East Asian SecurityOkamoto Yukio

The knotty problem of relocating US Marines Air Station Futenma in Okinawa casts a shadow over prospects for the US military presence there. Meanwhile, China’s expansionist strategy presents a major challenge for Japan and the United States. Respected foreign policy commentator Okamoto Yukio explains the background and regional implications.
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Okinawan Identity and the Struggle for Self-DeterminationShimabukuro Jun

Since Onaga Takeshi’s successful campaign for governorship of Okinawa last fall, “Okinawan identity” has emerged as a rallying cry for unified opposition to plans for a replacement facility for US Marine Corps Air Station Futenma inside Okinawa Prefecture. Okinawan political scientist and activist Shimabukuro Jun explores the meaning of Okinawan identity in a historical context, focusing on the postwar experience of “structural discrimination.”
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The Opposition Stance on Security Policy

Nagashima Akihisa, an expert on security issues from the Democratic Party of Japan, explains that while the top opposition party cannot go along with the security legislation proposed by the Abe administration, it does not totally reject the idea of exercising the right of collective self-defense.
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