Dr. Joseph P. Farrell
December 28, 2016
After the Onsen summit between Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Russian Federation President Vladimir Putin, I made a basic prediction that the issue of the Kuril islands would not be a stumbling block for Russia and Japan moving forward with lucrative trade deals. There is a simple geopolitical reality driving these events: as US power declines, Japan needs other strong allies, and a secure supply of energy, and Russia is ready to hand with energy resources in Siberia that are close to hand. Russia, in turn, needs Japan as a counter-balance to growing Chinese influence, and also as a financial and technological ally in its long term plans to develop the region. For the foreseeable future, Japan’s and Russia’s geopolitical and financial interests coincide to an amazing degree, and to a degree completely unimaginable just a half a century ago.
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