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  • In Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced today that he is resigning because of a chronic health problem.

  • He has held the post longer than anyone, including a grandfather and great uncle who were also prime ministers.

  • Our foreign affairs correspondent, Nick Schifrin, reports.

  • Shinzo Abe and his family are political veterans, but one of his lasting legacies may be an alliance with a political novice.

  • I grabbed him and hugged him, because that's the way we feel.

  • Donald, president, you are excellent businessman.

  • You have fought the uphill struggle and this is the dynamism of democracy.

  • He flattered President Trump. And he understood President Trump's personality.

  • Mike Mochizuki is the U.S.-Japan chair at George Washington University.

  • He says the Abe-Trump bromance, forged over sumo wrestling, golf selfies, and awkward handshakes, strengthened the bilateral relationship to confront China and North Korea and outlast Trump.

  • Minister Abe understood the strategic situation.

  • Without a strong U.S.-Japan relationship, Japan would not then have the autonomy and freedom to pursue its own interests in Asia.

  • Top of the list, a revitalized military.

  • Abe's Japan purchased more U.S. weaponry. He failed to revise the country's pacifist constitution, but pushed through changes that allow Japanese forces to fight in a crisis.

  • This opened the way for Japan to cooperate with other countries, especially the United States, on a variety of common defense missions.

  • Abenomics.

  • Economically, Abenomics lowered interest rates, increased spending, and pulled the economy out of deflation, but it achieved only modest success.

  • He did manage to end political instability and a rotating door of leaders.

  • Just to be able to stay in office this long, and to stabilize foreign policy, and chip away at some of the economic challenges, you know, that, in itself, I think, is a lasting achievement.

  • Abe leaves his successor with major structural economic concerns exacerbated by COVID (19).

  • And, today, in a final press conference, an emotional Abe said it broke his heart to leave the job half done.

  • For the "PBS NewsHour," I'm Nick Schifrin.

In Japan, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced today that he is resigning because of a chronic health problem.

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The legacy of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who is resigning due to illness

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    Yuka Ito posted on 2020/08/31
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