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    Because East Asia is one big, happy family

    So it looks as if the recently announced US troop realignment in Europe and Asia will affect Korea but not Japan. (That second link goes to The Daily Yomiuri, which doesn’t have separate URL’s for each article. It’s the one headlined “Govt Unfazed over Changes,” and I was just lucky that I guessed which changes they were talking about.) Well, apparently, Korea and the US are “consulting” about the proposal to decrease by 12500 the number of armed forces personnel (currently 37000) in Korea and have come to a provisional agreement. The Asahi says that the number of soldiers stationed here may actually increase. The Yomiuri article also contains this comforting passage:

    In the talks, the Japanese side repeatedly emphasized that the most important thing was to maintain the deterrent effect of U.S. forces in the region.

    Even if U.S. forces in East Asia are reduced, a Defense Agency official said, “it’s unlikely the realignment will prompt North Korea to cause a military emergency.”

    But there’s also the PRC to worry about, especially since it’s been making noises again over Taiwan’s attempts to join the UN (or rejoin, since as CNN notes, the Chinese seat was taken from Taiwan and given to the Mao-era mainland in 1971).

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