The United States and Japan agreed on Thursday to broaden their security alliance. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/04/world/asia/japan-and-us-agree-to-broaden-military-alliance.html?hp
The agreement calls for construction of a new missile-defense radar system in Japan, deployment of American drone aircraft here for the first time and joint efforts to combat cyberattack threats.
For Japan, the agreement appeared to give American approval to its still modest expansion of its military capabilities, as Japan’s new prime minister, Shinzo Abe, seeks to put his country on a more equal footing with its longtime military protector.
The agreement announced on Thursday says the United States and Japan should be ready to deal with “coercive and destabilizing behaviors,”
Another significant step was the decision to allow the United States to place a new X-band radar system in Kyogamisaki, near the city of Kyoto.
Thursday was also the first of the so-called two-plus-two meetings to include an agreement to work on specific cybersecurity projects. The United States said it would deploy surveillance drones in Japan, and also P-8 aircraft, which are highly advanced manned reconnaissance airplanes. Together they are intended to monitor the Western Pacific.
For its part, Japan said it would bolster its security capabilities by creating a new American-style National Security Council.
Japan also pledged to increase military spending over all, despite the country’s need to pare down its huge national debt. Japan said it might also change its current interpretation of its pacifist Constitution, drafted by American occupiers after World War II, to allow its military to come to the aid of American forces under attack, something it cannot now legally do.