Japan is a nation made up of thousands of islands. The four main ones that contain the vast majority of the country's land mass are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu and Shikoku. Much of the land is forested and uninhabited, creating dense population zones along the coasts. Japan's capital, Tokyo, has 30 million residents and is considered the largest urban area in the world. Despite the close quarters, Japan maintains a surprisingly low crime rate, homicide rate and infant mortality rate and one of the longest life expectancy rates, likely linked to their diet and lifestyle choices.
Japan has a long, storied country history, including participation in many wars, and culminating in World War II. They were soundly defeated by allied forces after atomic bombs were dropped on Nagasaki and Hiroshima in 1945. Following their surrender, Japan's revised Constitution had provisions for a constitutional monarchy and a Parliament known as a Diet. However, Japan was not allowed to maintain an external military and was limited to self-defense and peacekeeping roles.
In the late 20th and early 21st century, Japan became a major economic powerhouse, and now possesses the 3rd largest economy in the world with significant import and export volumes.
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