US President Barack Obama, facing withering criticism for a prolonged decision-making process on Afghanistan, asserted Friday he doesn't want the next move to be seen as an "open-ended commitment."
In a joint news conference with Japanese Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, Obama also said he was bent on "getting this right." He denied that his administration has been dithering and said that whatever policy change he announces must be aimed at protecting America from terrorist networks.
Opening a weeklong trip to Asia, Obama said the United States and Japan must "find ways to renew and refresh the alliance for the 21st century."
Hatoyama said the two leaders had agreed to spend the next year refining the nearly 50-year-old treaty that defines relations between the two World War II adversaries.