first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREThe Christmas Truce of 1914 proved that peace is possible“It is necessary to buttress mutual trust and strengthen bilateral relations,” Abe said in his first news conference after being elected by parliament to succeed Junichiro Koizumi as prime minister. “The Japan-United States alliance forms the foundation of our foreign and security policy.” 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! TOKYO – Japan’s new nationalist prime minister Shinzo Abe pledged to repair tattered relations with China, bolster his country’s long-standing alliance with the United States and overhaul the pacifist constitution after cruising to an easy victory Tuesday in a parliamentary vote. Abe’s roadmap takes Japan down a path toward a more robust military and more assertive foreign policy, delineating a fresh direction for a leader who, at 52, is Japan’s youngest premier and its first born after World War II. While Abe envisions a confident Japan that can step from the shadow of decades of postwar guilt, he conceded the country’s foreign and security policy will still rest firmly on Tokyo’s half-century alliance with the United States. It is a friendship that Japan increasingly hopes will help counter growing threats from a nuclear-armed North Korea and a burgeoning China. last_img