In February 2019, Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) held its annual party convention. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expressed his strong desire to revise Article 9 of the constitution, granting the Japan Self-Defense Force (JSDF) a full-fledged constitutional status. Despite his eagerness, the constitutional amendment that would include revising Article 9 is becoming a bridge too far for Abe, especially given that his time in office is entering its final stretch.
Abe’s willingness to complete the constitutional revision is well known. He has been a vocal advocate of the cause throughout his political career. Granting the JSDF full constitutionality has been a consistent goal since the LDP released its proposal for constitutional revision in April 2012, even though other proposed changes have been abandoned due to public resistance.
This article was originally published by the East Asia Forum on March 28, 2019. Read the full article here.