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For many decades, Japan has played an important role in providing development and humanitarian aid to countries throughout East and Southeast Asia, but it was long ‘hindered,’ so to speak, by its paci

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Jonathan Spangler, director of the South China Sea Think Tank in Taipei. (Forbes)

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I guess he is probably referring to humanitarian missions operated by the military, but Japan still regularly sends its disaster relief teams overseas during major natural events, so am skeptical to the claim that a stronger military can help promote aid.

Actually by far the biggest contribution Japan has made to regional development and aid is through the Asian Development Bank. It's return rate on loans and project success rate is multitudes higher than any other regional development bank in the world including the World Bank and IDB. Japan's focus on infrastructure projects has become the model for regional bank operations. This was all achieved with its pacifist "hindrance".

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Yes, to repeat Aly, how has Japan been "hindered" by pacifism? What Asia fears is a re-militarized Japan. Remember that WWII thing?

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Initial humanitarian aid to the Aceh earthquake victims was provided by the US Marines. Initial aid at Fukushima was provided by the Navy through the USS Ronald Reagan. Law & order in Mindanao (necessary for development) is provided with the assistance of US special forces. Etc. Etc.

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Precisely, Aly. It's utterly ridiculous to conflate the two. Cause for concern, indeed.

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For many decades, Japan has played an important role in providing development and humanitarian aid to countries throughout East and Southeast Asia, but it was long ‘hindered,’ so to speak, by its pacifist defense policy.

How is humanitarian aid hindered by a pacifist defense policy. That makes absolutely no sense at all

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