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Opinion

Abe lacks enduring success as Japan's longest-serving prime minister

In power for nearly 2,886 days, he has not kick-started Japan's economy

| Japan

In December 2012, Shinzo Abe surprised Japan's political establishment by surging back to power. The surprise rested in the widely held view that his earlier scandal-plagued 366 days as prime minister in 2006-07 had been a complete dud.

Yet return Abe did, and with two grand plans to change Japan's role in a region tilting toward China. One, a bold economic reform regimen aimed at restoring Japan's glory days of the 1980s. Two, amending the pacifist constitution to increase Tokyo's footprint in global security circles.

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