Japan should be a realist among nations and forge a path based on light armaments, economic strength and peace. If it continues to project its power in Asia through a heavily armed military presence, Japan's safety will be difficult to maintain. Japan needs to hone its diplomatic skills to improve relations with its neighbors. It needs to be one with Asia, and to do this, Japan needs to forge a special friendship with China. Japan should have two important partners: China and the US.
The Obama administration is talking about a new era of cooperation among the US, Japan and China. Japan needs to get on board, and it needs to embrace its pacifistic role. It is extreme at best to think that if Japan isn't heavily armed it will live under the subordination of China. Japan can live peacefully with China by building a relationship based on mutual respect and equality and refusing to interfere in the other's internal matters.
Let me repeat: China is an important partner for Japan. Japan needs to emerge as a leader of the Asian community. This is the only path left for us.