The People’s Daily website recently published an opinion article about a breakdown in the relationship between the United States and Japan. Below is an excerpt from that article:
Since December 26, 2013, when Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited the Yasukuni Shrine, the relationship between Japan, China, and South Korea has been in a frozen state. Recently, public condemnation and doubts from the international community, including the United States, about the Abe regime’s extreme right-wing tendencies have been growing. … There has been recent talk in the international community stating that "The U.S.-Japan relationship is breaking down." Will it really be so between the United States and Japan?
In this regard, we must remain highly aware and be sober minded. We must not be blindly optimistic.
First, recently, Abe’s hardline nationalist movement has clearly gained momentum in Japan. If there were no support from a big country behind it, how could Abe dare to act so recklessly as to even openly challenge China, South Korea, and the world? Who its "boss" is behind the scenes is well known to everyone, without any need to guess. The reason that the United States expressed disappointment about Abe’s move is mainly because Abe did not take sufficient action to mitigate the worries of another key U.S. ally, South Korea, about its agenda.
Second, since Japan and the U.S. signed a security treaty in the 1960s, the United States and Japan have maintained close contact and relations with each other. Even in the statement condemning Abe’s visit to the Yasukuni Shrine, the United States also stressed that Japan is still a very important and even its staunchest ally and friend in Asia.
Third, at present, Japan’s domestic politics have shown a clear trend towards being overall rightist. From Abe’s visit to the Yasukuni Shrine as well as from a series of tough words and deeds, even Europe and America also had some doubts and suspicions about his motives and about Japan’s future direction. However, out of its own strategic interests, the United States will take advantage of this "Yasukuni" card, and continue to adhere to its stance of supporting Japan.
The Abe path is endangering the safety of the Asia-Pacific region and sometimes it may affect or even damage the Japan-U.S. relationship. However, the world should be clear that they are the same kind of animal. As long as its fundamental interests will not be jeopardized, then in front of a common "enemy," the United States is not going to reverse its relationship with Japan.
Source: People’s Daily (online), February 25, 2014