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Home> InternationalJapan, US Revising Defense Plans With Eye on China

Japan and the United States are revising their mutual defense guidelines for the first time in nearly two decades to respond to China's military expansion and increase Japan's role in regional defense.

An interim report released Wednesday says the U.S. and Japan are pursuing a wider partnership that requires "enhanced capabilities and greater shared responsibilities."

The revision, the first since 1997, comes at a time of heightened Japan-China tensions over islands claimed by both countries in the East China Sea, as well as continuing concern about North Korea's missile and nuclear weapons development.

"What we need to address today is quite different from what we were aiming for in 1997," Koji Kano, a Defense Ministry official in the Japan-U.S. cooperation division, told reporters earlier this week. "The point is how Japan and the U.S. can respond better in the current environment."

The revised guidelines will factor in policy changes under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe that enable Japan to shoulder more responsibility for its own and regional defense, and relieve some of America's military burden in the Asia-Pacific region.

China, ahead of the report's release, said it would closely watch the new guidelines and warned that they should not infringe on its interests.

Webmaster's Commentary: 

Translation: the US government is looking at a war against both China and Russia.