Abe's strategy was to ally strongly with the United States and present himself as the loyal sidekick in Northeast Asia facing China and North Korea. But when Trump decided otherwise, he was badly wrong-footed. He is still living with the consequences, trying to make himself relevant again in the geopolitics of Northeast Asia.

Koichi Nakano, a political-science professor at Tokyo’s Sophia University, saying that as North Korean leader Kim Jong Un works the

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