When a new political party took over the reins of the Japanese government, it pledged “a diplomatic stance more independent of Washington” as the link below notes. The key word in that statement is the word “diplomatic.” Nations have many kinds of relationships. There are diplomatic, military, economic and cultural relationships, for example. Other media articles have focused on the fact that Japan is taking a more independent path on economic/banking matters than previous Japanese governments. That is understandable as the Japanese Central Bank functioned so in lock-step with the policies of the U.S. Federal Reserve Board for so long that it seemed like a junior partner to the Fed. That the Japanese will now have financial policies that are more independent of the U.S. Federal Reserve Board is hardly a surprise. Such independence was long overdue.

The link below reports, however, that US-Japanese military ties will not only remain strong, but will also “expand into new areas… as both [the USA and Japan] adapt to a rising China.” This statement emerged from a joint meeting of the two nations’ foreign and defense ministers. While acknowledging differences over the basing of U.S. troops on Okinawa and other issues, the joint declaration really reflects the most-pressing reality that both nations face. That reality is the rising military power of China. China is so large a nation and is building new high-tech weaponry so fast that the USA and Japan are being driven relentlessly closer in their military alliance.

Japan lives so close to China that it is particularly threatened by China’s militarism. China has not forgotten what Japan did to China in World War II, and I suspect that China’s leaders may want to settle that score in a future war with Japan. Japan knows this although I’m sure this will remain an unspoken factor in relations between the two nations. China’s rapid militarization makes Japan’s military alliance with the USA steadily more important, not less important. China’s rising military threat to the USA makes Japan steadily more important to the USA as well. Keep this fact in mind whenever diplomatic squabbles develop between Japan and the USA. Military realities mandate that Japan and the USA unite their forces and interests to counter the growing power of China which increasingly threatens both the USA and Japan. This dynamic is not going to change.

The Japanese-American alliance was prophesied approximately 2,500 years ago in Ezekiel 38. After listing in verses 2-6 the Asian nations that will attack the USA, NATO and their western allies (called “Israel” in this prophecy because these western nations are descended from the ten tribes of “Israel”) in the latter days, verse 13 lists the Asian nations which will not attack the USA and its western allies. They are listed as “Sheba and Dedan, and the merchants of Tarshish with all the young lions thereof.” My previous blogs have identified India as the modern nation of “Sheba and Dedan,” Japan as “the merchants of Tarshish” and the young tiger nations of the Pacific Rim as the “young lions” of Ezekiel 38:13. Japan so pioneered and perfected the export-driven, mercantile national economy that it is uncannily accurate for this prophecy to refer to them as “the merchants of Tarshish.” Tarshish is identified as a nation of Japheth in Genesis 10:4, and Tarshish’s father was “Javan” (a very close similarity to “Japan”). Javan had three other sons as well, and the descendants of one of them must have migrated to Indonesia as the name “Javan” resurfaces there on the island of “Java.” The “young lions thereof” is an uncannily accurate prophetic term for the “young tiger” nations of Asia which copied the Japanese mercantile economy. These nations include South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand, Singapore, etc.

For a more through discussion of the identification of Japan, India and the “young lion” nations in the modern world, I invite you to read my article, Japan’s Role in Biblical Prophecy and my May 2, 2007 blog entitled Will India and the USA Become Allies? The latter blog, written almost three years ago, accurately saw that India and the USA would steadily become strategic allies against China. That prediction was based solely on biblical prophecy. The fact that very ancient biblical prophecies are relentlessly coming to pass in our modern times confirms that we are, indeed, living in the biblical latter days and that there is a Creator God who both authored the Bible and is guiding the destinies of modern nations to fulfill his biblical prophecies. If you accurately understand biblical prophecies, you can understand the future before it comes to pass!