Japan

Article

U.S.-Japan-Relations: 2016 Opens with a Bang

Authors: Sheila A. Smith and Charles McClean
Comparative Connections

Sheila A. Smith, senior fellow for Japan studies, analyzes how the United States and Japan together dealt with North Korean fourth nuclear test, China’s increasing military activities in the South China Sea, the long-standing base relocation issue in Okinawa, and the “Trump Shock,” caused by Republican frontrunner Donald Trump’s campaign language toward Japan on trade and on security cooperation.

See more in China; Japan; Regional Security

Article

Asia’s Great Powers and Regional Stability: A New Trilateral Dynamic Between the United States, China, and Japan

Author: Sheila A. Smith
American Foreign Policy Interests

“For some time,  the  idea  of  a  formal  trilateral discussion between the United States, Japan, and China has been considered but not acted on. Today, however, as the interactions among these three major powers carry such significant implications for the future of the Asia Pacific, the need for such a trilateral seems stronger than ever,” writes Sheila A. Smith, senior fellow for Japan studies.

See more in China; Japan; Regional Security

Article

U.S.-Japan-Relations: Official Cooperation, Domestic Challenges

Authors: Sheila A. Smith and Charles McClean
Comparative Connections

Chinese land reclamation in the South China Sea as well as local opposition to Tokyo’s plans for building a new airfield to replace the U.S. Marines’ Futenma facility are the two main challenges for Washington and Tokyo in the new year, writes Sheila A. Smith, senior fellow for Japan studies.

See more in United States; Japan; Defense Strategy; Regional Security

Primary Sources

Announcement by Foreign Ministers of Japan and South Korea on the Issue of "Comfort Women"

The governments of Japan and South Korea discussed the trafficking of South Korean sex slaves (known as "comfort women") in Japan during World War II. Japan agreed to provide reparations to surviviors which the government of South Korea would distribute; South Korea agreed to review the placement of a memorial statue dedicated to comfort women, which is near the Japanese Embassy in Seoul.

See more in Japan; South Korea; Violence Against Women

Other Report

Managing Japan-South Korea Tensions

Author: Mark E. Manyin

Fifty years after the establishment of official diplomatic relations between Japan and South Korea, continued animosity between the United States’ two Northeast Asian allies remains a problem for Washington, hampering its ability to deal with the challenges posed by North Korea, China, and a host of nontraditional security threats. Mark E. Manyin argues that, for the United States, the costs of nonintervention are rising.

See more in South Korea; Japan; Diplomacy and Statecraft

Other Report

Still Distant Neighbors: South Korea-Japan Relations Fifty Years After Diplomatic Normalization

Author: Cheol Hee Park

Over the past half century, South Korea and Japan have established themselves as firm and reliable allies of the United States, contributing to peace and stability in the Asia-Pacific region. But despite increasing cultural exchange and deepening economic ties between the two countries, Korea-Japan relations have shown deteriorated. Cheol Hee Park explains that, given the deteriorating security situation in East Asia and the emergence of an assertive China, the United States has an interest in repairing Korea-Japan relations.

See more in South Korea; Japan; Diplomacy and Statecraft

Primary Sources

Speech by South Korean President Park on the Seventieth Anniversary of Liberation

South Korean President Park Geun-hye spoke on August 15, 2015, marking the anniversary of Japan's surrender during World World II. President Park discussed the development of the South Korean economy and relations with North Korea and with Japan. Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe gave a speech on the end of World War II the previous day. See CFR.org's timeline, "Last Days of Imperial Japan" for background information.

See more in South Korea; Japan; History and Theory of International Relations; Sovereignty

Interactive

Timeline: The Last Days of Imperial Japan

Author: Eleanor Albert
Producers: Jeremy Sherlick and Kevin Lizarazo

Japan experienced unparalleled destruction by U.S. military forces in 1945 in the last months of World War II, resulting in its complete capitulation. Washington played a decisive role in Tokyo's postwar reconstruction, but the legacy of Japan's wartime actions continues to be a source of tension with its Asia Pacific neighbors.

See more in Japan; Wars and Warfare

Op-Ed

Brad Glosserman and Scott Snyder: How to Defeat the 'Korea Fatigue'

Authors: Scott A. Snyder and Brad Glosserman
Asahi Shimbun

The Japan-South Korea relationship steadily improved in advance of parallel ceremonies marking the 50th anniversary of the normalization of their diplomatic relations on June 22. In recent weeks, ministerial-level bilateral contacts resumed between economic and defense ministers, and the top leaders made positive remarks about prospects for the relationship.

See more in Japan; South Korea; Diplomacy and Statecraft