The U.S. State Department considered arming Japan with nuclear weapons in the early 1960s as a strategic counterweight to China’s military buildup, which included an atomic weapons program, according to a document obtained by Kyodo News.

The document, stored at the National Archives in Maryland, is a secret internal memo titled “Chinese Communist Nuclear Explosion.” It was produced in the department’s Far Eastern Bureau and dated Dec. 3, 1962.

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