Yomiuri wrote that the 2+2 meeting between the United States and Japan was held only two months after the launch of the Biden administration. The paper said this demonstrates that the United States attaches importance to its alliance with Japan in responding to China and projected that Japan will be urged to take specific steps to enhance its deterrence capacity in response to China’s accelerating military buildup. Japan’s geopolitical importance has been increasing because U.S. Forces Japan would be required to make an initial response in the event of a contingency in the Taiwan Strait. The daily surmised that the U.S. military has high expectations for assistance from the SDF.
Asahi reported that as the former Trump administration was criticized for taking a unilateral approach and “neglecting Asia,” Tokyo has been reportedly desperate to keep Washington engaged in the region by proposing the free and open Indo-Pacific initiative and launching the Quad partnership involving Australia and India. “Today marked a historic day for the alliance,” said an unnamed senior Japanese diplomat, who was pleased that the two partners renewed their commitment to taking a concerted line toward China.