Japan's Shinzo Abe: Comeback kid with conservative agenda
TOKYO (REUTERS) - Japan's Shinzo Abe may be thoroughly modern when it comes to pitching his policies on a widely followed Facebook page, but his conservative agenda for shedding the shackles of post-war pacifism is one that he learned at his grandfather's knee.
The dapper, soft-spoken Abe first took office in 2006 as Japan's youngest prime minister since World War II. But he quit suddenly after a year plagued by scandals in his cabinet, public outrage at lost pension records and his Liberal Democratic Party's (LDP) big defeat in an election for parliament's upper house.
Now with a hawkish Abe again at the helm, the LDP - ignominiously ousted in 2009 - surged back to power on Sunday, giving Mr Abe a rare second chance to lead the world's third-largest economy and its 10th most populous nation.
"I have experienced failure as a politician and for that very reason, I am ready to give everything for Japan," Mr Abe wrote in a recent magazine article, referring to his September 2007 resignation, which he blamed on a chronic intestinal ailment.