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Trump and Abe shoulder to shoulder
North Korea during the reign of Barack Obama and now his successor Donald J Trump has been doing military tests. Since last year it has conducted various missile launches and conducted two nuclear tests. Why North Korea is doing this is open to interpretation and while some say it is doing it to get the world's attention because it wants to negotiate a deal with the US and other interested parties others say it is demonstrating to the world North Korea is now a nuclear power with the means to deliver the nuclear warheads.
Obviously its neighbour to the south South Korea will not be best pleased with the North's activities and neither will Japan whose leader Shinzo Abe was visiting Donald Trump in the US. Abe need not have worried that the US would abandon its Asian ally Japan as Trump said he will be 100% behind Japan should it come to armed conflict. Abe himself has been something of a hawk and wants to beef up Japan's already strong armed forces so for example Japan could stride the world as a global super power or it could launch rescue missions against Islamic State when two of its citizens were kidnapped and killed. Of course Japan's WWII constitution drawn up by the US occupying power said Japan must renounce war as an action and only be allowed to defend its land, air space and territorial waters so Abe has to be careful what he is doing.
The US and Japan have been strong allies since WWII with US forces being based in Okinawa and other places in Japan which has sometimes led to resentment by Japanese locals of Americans having military bases by their towns and cities. Japan itself has the capacity to make nuclear weapons given the fact it has nuclear power stations to supply Japan's electricity but would probably not relying instead on US protection.
When new US Defence Secretary James Mattis was in South Korea recently he threatened North Korea with "An overwhelming response" should North Korea launch a military attack on the US, South Korea or Japan. Donald Trump too has threatened that North Korea's missile tests and nuclear tests especially if it leads to war will not keep on being tolerated and Trump also indicated before he was President he would be quite willing to talk to Kim Jong - un if the North Korean leader was willing to engage with him.
This new missile test from North Korea was launched at 7.55 am local time from the Banghyon Air Base not far from Pyongyang. The missile flew out into the Sea of Japan before ditching in the water and the Pentagon reckoned the missile was a medium or inter - medium range missile.
Many especially in NATO are worried that Trump may become an isolationist especially as he seems to have warm words for Putin. However when Theresa May came back from the US she said despite Trump's critical words about NATO he was still committed to the alliance and it seems he is still very much committed to defending Shinzo Abe's Japan.
Brief bio of Shinzo Abe
1) Shinzo Abe born in Tokyo, Japan
2) Date of birth: 21 Setember 1954
3) Age aprroximately: 62
4) Spouse: Akie Abe
5) Married to Akie in 1987
6) One of Abe's favourite books is Towards A Beautiful Nation
7) Educated in 1977 at Sekei University and University of California
8) 57th and 63rd Prime Minister of Japan
9) Previous offices held: Chief Cabinet Secretary 2005 - 2006 and Prime Minister of Japan from 2012
10) Spent money on encouraging Japanese people to get married