So Shinzo Abe is elected by a landslide as Japanese PM. The DPJ were a disaster in a whole number of ways, but Sino-Japanese conflict over the Diaoyus/Senkakus seems to have played its part :
In a recent interview, Mr Abe told me it was time for Japan to change its pacifist constitution so it can have a proper military and defend its own territory. He also vowed to protect every inch of Japan's sacred land and sea - including the disputed Senkaku or Diaoyu Islands.
That by itself is not particularly controversial. But Mr Abe belongs to that part of Japanese society that does not really believe Japan's wartime aggression against China and South East Asia was a crime.
He favours the teaching of a more patriotic, uncritical version of Japanese history. Most controversially, he has openly said he does not believe that Japanese troops forced Chinese, Korean, and women from other Asian countries into sexual slavery during the Second World War.
It looks like the LDP and its allies will have a supermajority, so constitutional change might be more likely than previously, assuming that its genuinely on the agenda. From the point of view of overall Sino-Japanese relations that's a poor result. But it's also not a great result for the objective of building a containing alliance against China. The next place to watch is South Korea, which goes to the polls on December 19.
Abe, incidentally, is the only Prime Minister I can recall who claimed that he once resigned from office due to uncontrollable diahrroea of the non-verbal sort. Given that ulcerative colitis is partly triggered by stress, we're likely to get a bit of low comedy to go along with all the geopolitical tension. Like the man said: it's squeaky bum time.