The visit, which had been under consideration for most of Mr. Obama’s presidency, could serve as a coda to the transformation in the relationship between Japan and the United States from wartime enemies to the closest of allies. But it also has the potential to open old wounds, and it will take place in the shadow of a growing nuclear threat from North Korea.
Both American and Japanese officials sought to avoid any appearance that the visit would amount to an apology for the bombing, which killed more than 100,000 people.
Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan has shown no signs of pressing for an apology. He instead framed the May 27 visit as a chance to honor the dead and support the cause of nuclear disarmament.