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    US Ambassador delivers blandishments

    New US Ambassador to Japan certainly picked a nice, tranquil time to start his duties. He’s understandably making the bland diplomatic best of things, according to the Nikkei. From his first press conference:

    [On the anti-Japan demonstrations in China]: “The relations between the two are crucial with respect to the stability of the entire Asia region. It is our hope that they will aim to find a peaceful resolution through dialogue.”

    [On the reform of the UN]: “Complex issues have been piling up, and it is not desirable that we set a firm deadline at this point…. The US government, and I as an individual, do support Japan [in its petition for permanent UNSC membership].”

    [On the first East Asia summit to be held at the end of this year in Malaysia]: “The US is a Pacific country. We would like to participate if it means that we will have a chance to have a hand in setting broad policies that will have an effect in the region.”

    The East Asia summit will feature the ASEAN members plus inseparable buddies Japan, the PRC, and the ROK. Australia has already been snubbed after hinting that it would like an invitation. Malaysia and China are (go figure) those who are are most hesitant over the participation of Australia, let alone the US. Incidentally, Schieffer’s last post before Japan was Australia.

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