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A normal power: Japan's welcome role in rebalancing Asia

Abe's efforts on multiple fronts needed at a time of great uncertainty

With the Japanese helicopter carrier Kaga docked in Changi this week, it may be a good moment to reflect on Japan's re-emergence as a power to reckon with in the Indo-Pacific.

That the Kaga is named after an aircraft carrier launched nearly a century ago by the Imperial Japanese Navy is perhaps incidental. What matters is the fact that post-war Japan, which consciously limited its military role for decades, is now lifting self-imposed constraints in a bold effort to rebalance the region.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on October 20, 2018, with the headline 'A normal power: Japan's welcome role in rebalancing Asia'. Print Edition | Subscribe