The Los Angeles Times reports that "Japan on Tuesday announced a reinterpretation of its pacifist post-World War II Constitution that allows the country's military to help defend the United States and other allies."
"Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said the decision by the Cabinet to adjust the interpretation from one that limited the armed forces to defending Japan was necessary because of regional changes. The decision allows Japan's forces to help protect U.S. ships that may come under attack in nearby waters, Abe said."
"'This will be a deterrent,' he said during a news conference. 'The basic thinking on how the constitution is presently interpreted will not change because of the Cabinet decision that was made.'"