Bloomberg writer Noah Smith, in his Feb. 24 op-ed article titled “Will Japan become Asia’s next autocracy?,” warns of the danger in Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s attempt to amend the Constitution with the Liberal Democratic Party’s illiberal draft proposals, yet thinks it sensible to repeal Article 9, which prohibits Japan from using armed forces to resolve international conflicts.

That might be the predominant view among knowledgeable liberals in the West, but that view is dangerous. The restriction of individual freedoms and rights as well as the repeal of this pacifist article are inseparable from Abe’s drive to rewrite the Constitution in the quest for a remilitarized Japan.

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