The Administration has announced ambitious plans for the development and deployment of the SM-3 missile in filling in the missile gap, which has been created by the planned withdrawal of the missile defense system to have been deployed in Central Europe.
SM-3 is a development program which includes a major contribution from Japan: http://www.raytheon.com/capabilities/rtnwcm/groups/rms/documents/content/rtn_rms_ps_sm3_datasheet.pdf.
Our sources in Tokyo tell us that the new Japanese government is rethinking in significant ways their relationship with the United States which might well include the SM-3. Indeed, one of the more interesting notions is taking a co-developed missile from the US alliance with Japan and deploying it at the heart of the confrontation with Iran in Europe. Perhaps there are some issues here worth further consideration.
See also: U.S. Urges Japan To Export SM-3S: Interceptor Missiles For Europe Sought But Face Export Ban, Japan Times, Oct 25, 2009.
***Posted October 24th, 2009