World Relations

Japan Searches for New Way

Pakistan, Afghanistan, Iraq, Iran, North Korea—these are the countries that the Obama administration expects to be giving it a headache these days, but Defense Secretary Robert Gates arrived in Tokyo Wednesday, greeting a nation that is trying to redefine its relationship with the United States and China. An official told The Washington Post that Japan is no longer dependable in its policies and that in Asia, "the hardest thing right now is not China, it's Japan." In the past week, Japanese officials have announced that they will renegotiate a variety of military agreements with the U.S., a move that has American officials on edge. Gates was quoted the Post saying that a Japanese pullout on its military agreement would be "immensely complicated and counterproductive."