Japan reinterpreted pacifist constitution, allowing military to fight abroad.
Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (L) reviews members of Japan Self-Defense Force (JSDF) during the JSDF Air Review. Photo credit Reuters archive
TOKYO — Japan’s cabinet approved on Thursday bills to implement a drastic shift in security policy allowing the military to fight abroad for the first time since World War II, although the public is divided and wary over the changes.
The planned changes, reflected in new US-Japan defence guidelines unveiled last month, set the stage for Japan to play a bigger role in the bilateral alliance as Tokyo and Washington face challenges such as China’s growing military assertiveness.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s cabinet adopted a resolution last July reinterpreting the pacifist constitution to drop a self-imposed ban on exercising the right of collective self-defence, or militarily aiding a friendly country under attack.
China called on Tokyo to learn the lessons of history, while South Korea urged Japan to stick to the constitution’s spirit. READ ARTICLE HERE