Tension Grips U.S.-Japan Talks: Discord was heightened after a senior Clinton Administration official said Tokyo’s auto industry may fall victim to U.S. sanctions unless trade talks next month break new ground. Washington maintains that Japan’s domestic auto market is stacked against exports from the United States, so the industry might be a target of a punitive strike. Any move against Tokyo’s prized export car market would hurt both sides, by further driving up the Japanese yen and putting new pressure on U.S. interest rates. Two days of bilateral trade talks in Seattle have produced little progress. The United States has set a Sept. 30 deadline for Japan to open its markets to more foreign goods.