Russia tells Japan that military exercises in the Far East are internal: US and sovereignty?

Russia tells Japan that military exercises in the Far East are internal: US and sovereignty?

Kanako Mita, Sawako Utsumi, and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Japan rebuked the Russian Federation after learning of planned military exercises throughout this month in the environs of the Kuril Islands (Japan calls the region the Northern Territories). Immediately, the Russian Federation put out a statement that the Far East is an internal issue because this geographical landmass belongs to Russia.

Ironically, Japan is awash with American military installations that dot the landscape. Hence, the political elites in Tokyo understand that America is focused on containing China and the Russian Federation. Therefore, overcoming territorial disputes with China and the Russian Federation is further hindered by America utilizing Japan’s geography to spread divisions within Northeast Asia.

Sergey Lavrov, the Russian Foreign Minister, said earlier this year, “Moscow finds it worrisome Japan has long become an ally of the United States.”

Lavrov continued, “There is the 1960 treaty, by which the Americans have a great freedom of maneuver and action on the Japanese territory. Now, that the United States in its doctrinal documents has come close to declaring us an enemy, or at least an adversary and the main threat alongside China, Japan’s alliance with a country that regards us as a threat does not quite match the task of creating an optimal climate for our relations.”

The region of Northeast Asia consists of Japan, Mongolia, Northern China, North Korea, South Korea, and the Russian Far East. However, the role of the armed forces of America within the body politic of Japan complicates the situation. This notably concerns the increasing containment policies of America aimed at China (economic and military) and the Russian Federation (geopolitics and military).

American military bases also exist throughout South Korea. However, this nation is more neutral toward China and the Russian Federation. Also, unlike Japan, South Korea keeps a distance from events concerning China and Taiwan.

TASS News reports, “Russia can conduct military exercises throughout its entire territory, even the Far East, and these maneuvers should not be a cause for other countries’ concerns, Kremlin Spokesman Dmitry Peskov emphasized on Monday.”

Japan understands that NATO powers are increasing their military supplies to Ukraine and are involved in a propaganda war against the Russian Federation. This rhetoric especially emanates from America and the United Kingdom. However, France and Germany seek to reach a compromise with the Russian Federation concerning Ukraine, NATO expansion, and major weapons of mass destruction near the borders of the Russian Federation.

France and Germany are also concerned about major energy projects with the Russian Federation. For example, America seeks to dismantle an important energy pipeline linking Germany and the Russian Federation. Therefore, Japan should show extra diplomacy instead of endlessly hiding behind the whims of America.

Peskov said, “Without a doubt, we continue the process of military development, the process of army training, maneuvers, and drills across the entire geography of the Russian Federation, including the Far East.”

If Japan can not provide any guarantees that America will not manipulate future progress with the Russian Federation – then Russia should be careful of opening up more geopolitical weaknesses that America will utilize in the realm of weapon expansion and so forth.

If Japan wants to be treated as an independent nation, then having American military bases throughout the country – and siding endlessly with America’s containment policies of China and the Russian Federation – is a strange way of showing Japan’s independence. Therefore, political elites in Moscow – despite seeking accommodation with Japan – can’t ignore the negative motives of America.

This concerns the utilization of the geography of Japan for economic, military, and geopolitical purposes, which is aimed at the Russian Federation. America also utilizes Japan for its containment policies of China.

Modern Tokyo News is part of the Modern Tokyo Times group

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