Japan's_Military_Is_Revving_Up-30f4e526544ae0e889d1d71f36d26d94For a long time, Japan’s military force was an exercise in contradiction. The country has ranked among the world’s top military spenders, at almost $50 billion in 2013 — despite a constitution that explicitly forbids war (and even the maintenance of “land, sea, and air forces”). But in July, the cabinet of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe approved a reinterpretation of the pacifist clause called Article 9. Without changing the constitution’s wording, Abe made clear that Japan intended to step up its military prerogative in the region, allowing it to come to the aid of an attacked ally, for instance. More