TOKYO – Japan’s ruling party has urged the government to consider arming itself with more advanced and offensive capability, such as striking enemy targets with cruise missiles, loosening Japan’s self-defense-only military posture since the end of World War II.
The Liberal Democratic Party’s panel on security policy urged the government to immediately start studying ways to bolster Japan’s capability to intercept missiles with a system like the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense, or THAAD system, that the U.S. and Seoul have agreed to install in South Korea.
The panel cited a “new level of threat” from North Korea, which fired four missiles this month, three of them landing inside Japan-claimed exclusive economic waters.
The party’s proposal was to be submitted to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe later Thursday.
Bound by Japan’s postwar pacifist constitution, the proposal doesn’t call for a first-strike.