Open Forum

The lives of Japanese diplomats and security planners were simpler in the old days. During the Cold War, Tokyo’s priority was to monitor the activities of Soviet aircraft and naval vessels in the vicinity of Japan, and to prepare to resist a hypothetical invasion from the north. Matters were made easier by the fact that, in dealing with Japan’s main potential adversary, security imperatives needed to be balanced against few economic considerations since the Soviet Union was not a major player in international trade. Throughout the Cold War, the relative might of the United States was also such that, in terms of security, it was largely sufficient for Japan to rely on its alliance with Washington.  

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