Japan

Interview

Japan's Hard Power Play

Michael Auslin interviewed by Eleanor Albert

While the ISIS executions of two Japanese hostages have reinvigorated a public debate about the country’s postwar pacifism, recent moves by Tokyo to revise its counterterrorism policies should be viewed in the context of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s larger military ambitions, says expert Michael Auslin.

See more in Japan; Defense and Security

Op-Ed

Reading Pyongyang’s Intentions with Japan

Author: Sheila A. Smith
38 North

Sheila Smith examines how domestic pressure in Japan, the release of U.S. citizens detained by North Korea, and a new UN resolution referring North Korean leaders to the International Criminal Court on charges of crimes against humanity could potentially shape Tokyo’s ongoing efforts to learn the fates of Japanese citizens abducted by Pyongyang decades ago.

See more in Japan; North Korea; Treaties and Agreements

Primary Sources

Interim Report on the Revision of the U.S.-Japan Guidelines for Defense Cooperation

During a 2+2 meeting in October 2013, Japanese and U.S. defense ministers called for the revision of the 1997 Guidelines for U.S.-Japan Defense Cooperation. On October 8, 2014, they released an interim report on the revisions and a final version is expected by the end of the 2014. This revision is part of the Obama Administration's strategy to rebalance to Asia.

See more in Japan; United States; Defense Strategy

Primary Sources

Details of Exchanges Between Japan and South Korea Regarding the Comfort Women Issue

From 1991 to 1992, the Japanese government conducted research about the trafficking of sex slaves (known as "comfort women") in Japan during World War II. The study established the Asian Women's Fund, which worked in Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, and Indonesia to redress victims. On June 20, 2014, more details were released about information exchanged between Japan and South Korea during the study and about Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Yohei Kono's statement which acknowledged the involvement of the Japanese military in establishing "comfort stations."

See more in Japan; South Korea; Human Trafficking; Women

Foreign Affairs Article

Voodoo Abenomics

Author: Richard Katz

Imagine the predicament currently facing a growing number of Japanese men in their early 30s. Despite having spent years cramming in high school and attending good colleges, many can't find a full-time job at a good company.

See more in Japan; Competitiveness