On August 18, the leaders of the United States, South Korea (Yoon Suk Yeol), and Japan (Fumio Kishida) held their first-ever meeting at Biden’s residence at Camp David. There is much in the joint statement from the summit that points to the creation of a new format of interaction between these countries. For example, they agreed to impose coordinated sanctions against Russia and reduce dependence on its energy resources, as well as to hold major joint military exercises every year. The defense and foreign ministers of the three countries will meet “at least annually” to coordinate their actions.
In addition to Russia, the statement paid considerable attention to North Korea. All three countries supported, on the one hand, the restoration of dialog with North Korea without preconditions. On the other — they favored the formation of a special trilateral working group to strengthen cooperation, «including with the international community, to counter cyber threats from the DPRK and to block the digital circumvention of sanctions.»
To make this contradictory symbiosis of the countries possible, Washington seems to have put a lot of effort and made a lot of promises, stirring up the interest of Japan and the Republic of Korea. After all, these countries have historically had very tense relations after the Japanese occupation of the Korean peninsula in 1910–1945.
Behind these efforts, the U.S. intention to create a NATO-like organization in Asia based on the new Washington-Tokyo-Seoul axis can be seen. On the eve of the summit, US State Department spokesman Kirby confirmed the suspicions. «Our three countries will announce significant initiatives on Friday which will help cement our trilateral cooperation going forward,» Kirby told reporters. — «These initiatives will take our trilateral relationship to new heights as we work together to deliver benefits for our people and for people across the region.» And Republic of Korea President Yoon Suk Yeol, in a speech marking the 78th anniversary of Korea’s liberation from Japanese colonial rule, said the Camp David summit «will set a new milestone in trilateral cooperation contributing to peace and prosperity on the Korean Peninsula and in the Indo-Pacific region.» That is, in order to counter Russia, China and North Korea, South Korea will try to forget about the atrocities of the Japanese military, and Japan will try to erase the atomic apocalypse of Hiroshima and Nagasaki from its memory.
By the way, China was not mentioned in the official statement. But, apparently, it was one of the main topics. Washington does not want to tease Beijing one more time. «The summit was not about China. That was not the reason it was called, but obviously the topic came up during the talks,» Biden said at a joint press conference with South Korea’s president and Japan’s prime minister.
The Chinese, for their part, also saw in the trilateral meeting the prospect of creating a certain military axis directed, among others, against China. «Attempts to form various separate groups and bring military blocs and inter-bloc confrontation to the Asia-Pacific region will not be supported and will be met with a wary attitude and opposition from the states of the region,» the Chinese Embassy in the United States said in a statement. — «No country should pursue its own security at the expense of other states’ security interests as well as of peace and stability in the region. The international community has a fair view of who is fueling conflicts and inflaming tensions. The Asia-Pacific region is a bastion of peace and development, it is also promising in terms of cooperation and growth, and it should not be transformed into an arena of geopolitical rivalry again.»
China presents its own separate historical bill to Japan. About 35 million Chinese died during the Japanese occupation and anti-Japanese war. The Japanese committed such atrocities in China in the twentieth century that they are unlikely to be forgotten not only in the twenty-first but also in the twenty-second century. A step toward reconciliation could be Tokyo’s renunciation of its militaristic intentions, which Beijing regularly calls for. But, as we see, the Japanese ruling circles have taken the opposite course. Japan’s Self-Defense Forces are being systematically transformed into a powerful army equipped with offensive weapons. Japan actually possesses nuclear weapons or can acquire them in a short time. Military cooperation with the United States is being strengthened.
A separate meeting between U.S. President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at Camp David once again confirmed this. According to its results, the sides noted significant progress in the development of the defense partnership between the two countries and agreed to jointly develop an anti-missile system to intercept hypersonic weapons. Biden and Kishida also reiterated their readiness to support Kiev «as long as necessary.» It should not be forgotten that NATO’s representative office in the region is about to start operating in Tokyo.
In other words, Washington is preparing Japan to play the role of an unsinkable aircraft carrier in the case of a conflict with China over Taiwan. The Republic of Korea is assigned the role of an auxiliary «ship» in the region. In the future, with the involvement of Australia, an Asian wing of NATO will be formed. All three indicate their strategic intent to confront Russia and pressure it by military, economic and political methods.
The prediction of Russian President Putin is confirmed, who recalled that in 2022 NATO agreed on a new concept for the bloc’s development in the Pacific region and wants to create a «global NATO.» «Western analysts themselves are saying that the West is starting to build a new axis, similar to the one that was created back in the 30s by the fascist regimes in Germany, Italy, and militaristic Japan,» Putin said.