Revolutionary Japan is Suddenly the Centre of World AffairsSubmitted by Michael Nystrom on Tue, 01/22/2013 - 11:49
So Japan may not slide into genteel oblivion after all. To the surprise of the Japanese people, their country is smack in the middle of two riveting dramas that threaten to upturn the global strategic landscape in short order.
By Ambrose Evans-Pritchard | The Telegraph
Newspapers may soon have to re-open their Tokyo bureaux, shut down long ago when the investment bubble burst and one Lost Decade stretched into another.
We all watch with disbelief as China and Japan rattle sabres over the Senkaku/Diaoyu islands, so like the seemingly minor events that drew Europe's alliance systems into conflict from 1911 onwards.
Both graduated to fighter jets last week: Japan sending in F-15s; China deploying J-10s, and mobilising the East China Sea fleet for live ammo drills.
China's purpose is clear. It is testing the US security umbrella, and Washington's willingness to risk conflict to back Asian allies. There is a minority in Beijing who think America is a busted flush, a mistake made repeatedly by different powers over the last hundred years.
The possibility that the world's three largest economies could come to blows -- as feared by US defense secretary Leon Panetta -- is a sobering thought.
Continue at The Telegraph