The territorial dispute between China and Japan over a group of islands in the East China Sea continues to worsen, with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton warning Beijing not to try to change the status quo in which the uninhabited isles are under Japanese administration and the Chinese responding that Clinton's words would embolden rightwing forces in Japan and lead to further tension.

That's an interesting charge. There is general agreement that nationalism is on the rise in Japan; witness the election of Shinzo Abe, a rightwing politician, last month. Who is responsible for pushing Japan to the right?

To a degree, both the Chinese and Japanese governments are responding to growing nationalism. However, there is little doubt that rising nationalistic sentiments on both sides are being driven by China.