How will the United States respond? Instead of undermining the potential partnership between Japan and Russia; akin to what happened in 1956, when the United States pushed Japan to reject a peace treaty agreement that included the return of two of the four Northern Territories (Shikotan and Habomai islands) from the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics; Russia is now requesting the United States join a multinational security effort and help negotiate the settlement of these islands.
However, it is hard to say how the U.S. will respond. During the Olympics, only Japan stood next to Russia as objection rose amid the turmoil in Ukraine and Russia’s policies towards homosexuals. The United States and other European powers chose not to attend–in attempt to send a strong message towards Putin.
This article is a very good summation of the strengthening of ties between Japan and Russia over the past few years, but with a twist. What I find most interesting, is that this article is from the Moscow Times and encourages more US-involvement in these currently bilateral engagements between Russia and Japan. The article pushes that with multilateral engagements, the Japan-Russia-US powers will be able to successfully contain China (an item of concern by both Russia and Japan, according to the article).
Is this foreseeable in the future? Or do you think the Cold War still plays a role in how the U.S. will treat Russia?
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(Photo from voanews.com)