Obama's re-election unlikely to help Japan in fight with China over disputed island: Experts

Last Updated: Sat, Nov 17, 2012 07:20 hrs

U.S. President Barack Obama's re-election is unlikely to help Japan in its dispute with China over Senkaku islands in the East China Sea, analysts in Tokyo have said.

Experts believe that instead of trying to protect the Japan-controlled Senkaku Islands in the East China Sea, which are claimed by China, the US could urge Tokyo to bolster its defense capability on its own because Obama is aiming to cut military spending during his second term.

"Ultraman won't come without doing anything," said Tatsuhiko Yoshizaki, executive vice president of Sojitz Research Institute, comparing the United States to the popular giant-size hero character.

Obama's administration has shifted its military focus in its so-called Asia-Pacific pivot, leading Japan to believe that reinforcing its alliance with the U.S. will help prevent China from boosting its naval power in the region, the Japan Times reports.

Takushoku University professor Takashi Kawakami, however, said Obama's military strategy is only aimed at pursuing the national interests of the United States, not Japan's.

"Tokyo will be forced to play 'a bigger role' to deter China's rising assertiveness in the region as Washington may become too stretched to protect even its allies in the face of major cuts in military spending, " the paper quoted Kawakami, as saying. (ANI)

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