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In his 2008 New Year’s speech, Japanese political doyen and former Prime Minister Yasuhiro Nakasone warned that without a clear-cut national vision and objective, Japan might tread a path toward ruin like the ancient city-state of Carthage, which was defeated and destroyed by Rome in 146 B.C.

Referring to the confusion in the country over how to address the question of national security, especially the alliance between Japan and the United States, Nakasone made these points:

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