Here‘s an interesting development:
Japan and Russia are weaving closer military and economic relations, and the reason lies just across the Amur River from here — China.
That is a big change for Russia and Japan, which for two centuries have eyed each other warily in Northeast Asia. To this day, Japanese are slow to forgive Russia for the deaths of thousands of World War II prisoners in Siberian work camps. Russian dead at the hands of what they call the samurai are memorialized at Soviet-era monuments. The two nations have never even signed a peace treaty ending World War II.
Yet visits by navy and coast guard units of each country have become annual affairs. In 2004, bilateral trade jumped 38 percent over 2003 levels. Japan has become the largest foreign investor in the oil and gas projects of Sakhalin, the largest foreign investment in Russia today. Toyota, Japan’s largest corporation, has announced plans to build an auto plant in Russia.
via The Marmot