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Chinese Warplane Buzzes Disputed Islands Near Okinawa

Prime Minister Abe Attends Naval Fleet Review

For the first time, a Chinese warplane has flown through international airspace between the disputed Senkaku Islands and Okinawa. Japan scrambled its own fighter jets in response. To make matters even more interesting, just yesterday Chinese ships completed an entire circuit of the Japanese archipelago, passing for the first time through La Pérouse Strait which separates Japan from Russia. A show of force perhaps?

“I believe this indicates China’s move toward further maritime expansion,” said the Japanese Defense Minister. This renewed Chinese aggression in disputed territory and strategic ocean corridors close to the main Japanese islands comes just days after Japanese voters handed a landslide victory to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s LDP.

In response to this aggression, it wouldn’t be surprising if on August 15, the anniversary of the end of World War II, Abe chose to visit the controversial Yasukuni Shrine in Tokyo, which China and South Korea say honors Japanese war criminals and the country’s militaristic past.

[Japanese warships photo courtesy of Getty Images]

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  • wigwag

    Excellent. Rising antagonism between Japan and China (as long as it stays reasonably under control) is very much in America’s interest. I just hope that Barack Obama isn’t too stupid to figure out that it’s Japan that is the American ally, not China.

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