Sunday, October 31, 2010

Tokyo Seminars

MAO’S GREAT FAMINE: A HISTORY OF CHINA¹S MOST DEVASTATING CATASTROPHE. 11/4, 5:30-7:00pm, Tokyo. Sponsor: Sophia University Institute of Comparative Culture. Speaker: Prof. Frank Dikötter, University of Hong Kong, Chair Professor of Humanities at University of Hong Kong, Professor of Modern History of China.

DRAWING THE BIG PICTURE: A DIPLOMAT’S VIEW. 11/8, 1:30-3:00pm, Tokyo. Sponsor: Int'l House of Japan. Speaker: Tanaka Hitoshi, Senior Fellow, Japan Center for International Exchange.

RETHINKING GLOBAL CHALLENGES: ASIAN INTELLECTUALS IN DIALOGUE. 11/8, 1:30-5:30pm, Tokyo. Sponsor: International House of Japan. Speakers: Seki Kaoruko, Humanitarian Policy Officer, United Natioms; Ahn Byungok, Head, Institute of Climate Change Action; Guo Zhiyuan, Attorney / Chief Arbitrator / Professor and Director, Center for Law Application, Anhui University; Kong Rithdee, Film Critic / Columnist, Bangkok Post; Fouzia Saeed, Director, Mehergarh; Sasanka Perera, Professor of Anthropology and Head, Department of Sociology, University of Colombo.

BEYOND CURRENT CRISIS IN SINO-JAPANESE RELATIONS. 11/8, 7:00pm, Tokyo, JP. Sponsor: ICAS, Temple U. Speakers: Kazuhiko Togo, Global Affairs Institute at Kyoto Sangyo University; Andrew Oros, Washington College, visiting professor at Keio University.

JAPANESE TRANSLATION OF TABOO! THE HIDDEN CULTURE OF A RED LIGHT AREA. 11/11, 6:30-8:00pm, Tokyo. Sponsor: International House of Japan. Speaker: Dr. Fouzia Saeed, Director, Mehergarh. Shew was head of the UN Gender Program in Pakistan, served as Pakistan Country Director for Action Aid and currently is an international consultant in the field of Gender and Development. She is the author of the book TABOO! The Hidden Culture of a Red Light Area.

JAPAN IN SEARCH OF ITS NEW ROLE IN WORLD AFFAIRS: FOREIGN POLICY OPTIONS TWENTY YEARS AFTER END OF COLD WAR. 11/13, 9:30am-6:00pm, Tokyo. Sponsor: ICU. Speakers: Norihiko Suzuki, ICU President; Wilhelm Vosse, SSRI Director; Yoshihide Soeya, Keio University; Tadashi Anno, Sophia University; Paul Midford, NTNU, Norway; Keiichi Ichikawa, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan; Itaru Umezu, Chair; William T. Tow, Australian National University, Australia; Takashi Shiraishi, Council for Science and Technology Policy; Andrew Oros, Washington College, USA; Reinhard Drifte, University of Newcastle and RUSI, UK; Yoichiro Sato, Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University; Mohammed Badrul Alam, Jamia Millia Islamia University, India.

TURBULENCE IN GLOBAL AIRLINE INDUSTRY: DEALING WITH PROBLEMS FACING JAPAN'S AIRLINES. 11/15, 4:40-6:10pm, Tokyo. Sponsor: GRIPS Forum. Speaker: Kenichiro Hamada, President, CEO, ANA Strategic Research Institute Co., Ltd.

EXPLAINING COLLAPSE OF LDP REGIME. 11/18, 6:30pm, Tokyo, JP. Sponsor: German Institute for Japan Studies. Speaker: Jun Saito, assistant professor in Department of Political Science, Yale University.

Smith College has nuts


To support scholarships for women, 
The Smith College Club of Washington 
sells premium shelled pecans and chocolate covered pecans.

APP's Director is a Smith College graduate and a Washington pecan rep. 

To order, contact her directly. Delivery can be arranged.

Plain, Shelled Jumbo Pecans - 1 pound bag - Only $8 - $2.35 tax-deductible

Chocolate-covered Jumbo Pecans - 12 oz gold & green foil bag - Only $7 - $2.80 tax-deductible

Please make checks out to SCCW (Smith College Club of Washington)

Kyoto Conference - November 4

Can Asia Save the World Economy?

Since the ‘Lehman Shock’, the world economy has been in a state of depression, and the Japanese economy has suffered from a strong yen, low stock prices, and high unemployment rates. The U.S.-Japan Research Institute, an APP member, hosts  an international symposium commemorating the APEC forum being held in Japan. Speakers, from private companies and universities both in and outside Japan  will discuss the the Asia-Pacific region and propose solutions for improving their economies.

Thursday, November 4, 2010 2:40-6:15pm (Registration Opens 2:00pm)

Venue Soushikan Conference Hall, Kinugasa Campus, Ritsumeikan University,
                  56-1 Toji-in Kitamachi, Kita-ku, Kyoto, Japan

Supported by :

Keio University, Kyoto University, Ritsumeikan University,
The University of Tokyo, Waseda University

Admission FREE, Simultaneous interpretation provided



 MC: Katsuichi Uchida, USJI President, Vice President, Waseda University

 2:40 pm - Speech from the chair
         Junichi Mori
             USJI Vice chair, Vice President, Kyoto University

 2:50 pm - Panel Discussion (Session 1) : Economic Network in Asia and its Economic

         Moderator: Ryuhei Wakasugi
          Professor, Kyoto University

          Nobuhiko Hibara

          USJI Operating Adviser, Associate Professor, Ritsumeikan University

          Takehiko Inoue
             Panasonic Corporation

          Kouhei Shiino
             Japan External Trade Organization: JETRO

          Shinsaku Sugiyama
             Professor, Ritsumeikan University

 4:20 pm - Panel Discussion (Session 2) :APEC, East Asia Consortium and Global Imbalance

          Moderator: Keiji Nakatsuji
             USJI Operating Adviser, Professor, Ritsumeikan University

           Randall Henning

           Peterson Institute for International Economics: IIE,
               Professor, American University, United States

           Nobuhiro Hiwatari
            Professor, The University of Tokyo

           Masayuki Tadokoro
               Professor, Keio University

           Shujiro Urata
                Professor, Waseda University

           Xiaopeng Yin
                Associate Professor, University of International
                Business & Economics, China

   5:45 pm - Commemorative Speech
         Han Sung-Joo
             Ex-Foreign Minister, Republic of Korea,
             Professor Emeritus, Korea University

 6:10 pm - Closing Remarks

             Cassim Monte

             USJI Vice Chair, Vice Chancellor, Ritsumeikan University

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Smith College in Asia

Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts is one of the famous Seven Sisters on the forefront of women's education. Smith was the college of Gloria Steinem, Nancy Reagan, Sally Quinn, and countless other trouble-makers and doers.

President Carol T. Christ will travel to Asia in November to celebrate Smith College's longstanding ties to Asia. She will be in Tokyo (9), Seoul (11), Hong Kong (13), Singapore (17), Mumbai (19), and Delhi (23).

On this special six-city tour, President Christ will outline her vision for making Smith the college of choice for exceptional young women from around the world. Learn about Smith's international heritage, the important role Asia will play in Smith's future, and how Smith intends to educate today's students to be the global leaders of tomorrow.

Each event will include a panel discussion with prominent local alumnae who will reflect on how Smith prepared them for life beyond the Grécourt Gates. Topics include:
  • women's role in the new world economy
  • the relevance of a US education in today's global community
  • how a liberal arts education makes better scientists and engineers
  • the role alumnae activists have played in Asia
We encourage all APP members and blog readers to attend one of these talks!

All India

President Barak Obama will travel to India November 5-8, and Washington is awash in programing.

TOWARD REALISTIC U.S.-INDIA RELATIONS.10/26, 2:00-3:30pm, Washington, DC. Sponsor: Carnegie (CEIP). Speaker: George Perkovich, Vice President for studies and director of the Nuclear Policy Program, Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. 

OBAMA IN INDIA—BUILDING A GLOBAL PARTNERSHIP: CHALLENGES, RISKS, OPPORTUNITIES. 10/28, 4:00-5:30pm, Washington, DC. Sponsor: Carnegie Endowment. Speakers: Ashley J. Tellis, Carnegie; Daniel Markey, senior fellow for India, Pakistan and South Asia at Council on Foreign Relations. 

NEXT STRATEGIC FRONTIER: EMERGING RIVALRIES IN INDIAN OCEAN? 10/28, 9:30am-Noon, Breakfast, Washington, DC. Sponsor: AEI. Speakers: Dan Blumenthal, AEI; Sunil Dasgupta, University System of Maryland; Andrew Shearer, Lowy Institute for International Policy; Toshi Yoshihara, US Naval War College; Thomas Mahnken, US Naval War College; Jim Thomas, Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments; Andrew Winner, US Naval War College. 

MONSOON: INDIAN OCEAN AND FUTURE OF AMERICAN POWER. 11/9, 6:00-8:30pm, Washington, DC. Sponsor: CNAS. Speakers: Robert Kaplan, author, Monsoon: The Indian Ocean and the Future of American Power; Tom Gjelten, NPR’s award-winning correspondent.

DOES THE ELEPHANT DANCE? CONTEMPORARY INDIAN FOREIGN POLICY. 11/1, 5:30-7:00pm Sponsor: South Asia Studies Program, SAIS. Speaker: Ambassador David M. Malone, President of Canada’s International Development Research Centre and Former Canadian High Commissioner to India

Japan's Evolving Security

Two new books by APP members on Japanese security policy were published this month.

Yuki Tatsumi Senior Associate of the East Asia Program, Stimson Center has co-authored with Andrew Oros of Washington College a primer on Japanese security policy, Global Security Watch Japan: A Reference Handbook. It is an introduction to the history and dialogue of military security in Japan over the past 20 years. 

Ms. Tatsumi will give a presentation of the book on October 28th, 4:00-6:00pm, in Washington, DC at the Reischauer Center for East Asian Studies, SAIS (Rome Building Room 806, 1619 Massachusetts Ave., NW), EVOLVING JAPAN’S SECURITY POLICY INFRASTRUCTURE

The book ends with the beginning of the Kan Administration in June 2010. Thus, some of the assumptions and "constants" of Japanese security policy may soon change. As the DPJ consolidates its power and reorganizes its governing structures, new organizations, policies, and goals will appear. In fact, the very week the book was issued, National Strategy Minister Koichiro Gemba announced a reorganization of the government's policymaking system. Although it will take time to see if this makes a difference, the restructuring does provide, as the Shisaku blogger notes, "a little more clarity" to DPJ national policy.

Richard Bush, director of Brookings' Center for Northeast Asian Policy Studies (CNAPS) released his book on Chinese-Japanese rivalry in the East China sea, The Perils of Proximity China-Japan Security Relations, at Brookings seminar on October 18th (transcript and audio available). 

He reviews a long and sometimes brutal history, where they now continue to eye each other warily as the balance of power tips toward Beijing. They cooperate and compete at the same time, but if competition deteriorates into military conflict, the entire world has much to lose. He evaluates the chances of armed conflict between China and Japan, presenting in stark relief the dangers it would pose and revealing the steps that could head off such a disastrous turn of events.

In his October Brookings Policy Brief #177, China-Japan Security Relations, he outlines much of the argument he makes in his book.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Kan caught between a rock and a hard place

Kan's ship of state is not an all-together happy one. Not only has the Kan administration’s handling of the Senkakus incident been universally condemned as weak-kneed, it also has set off alarms about Japan’s national security among the DPJ hawks.

A group of DPJ defense policy specialists led by Akihisa Nagashima last week handed a petition to Prime Minister Kan that criticized the “political” decision by Naha prosecutors to release the captain and let him return to China. The incident, they noted, gave an impression of Japan’s weakness to ASEAN countries, which are concerned about Chinese assertiveness in the South China Sea. The group called on the government to take steps to shore up security strategy in tandem with the US as ally.

Even Japanese Communist Party Chairman Shii appeared on television last week to excitedly condemn China for daring to claim the Senkakus. He cited documents to prove that the Japanese were there first, and insisted that Beijing only became interested in the isles during the 1970s, when it was learned that the sea area nearby harbored potentially great reserves of valuable natural resources.

If Kan got bad press, at least the US, with its early confirmation that the Senkakus came under the security treaty, came out smelling of roses. Most happy was the conservative Sankei newspaper, which reported from Washington on October 4 that the US and Japan were now planning military exercises to “take back the Senkakus,” although such a scenario has yet to be verified by the Pentagon.

And China is the bogeyman once more. A Sankei opinion poll released October 4 found 71.5% of the public viewing China as a threat to Japan’s national security, and 80% felt that the incident had worsened their image of that country. Moreover, 83.1% said they did not trust China.

In a Yomiuri poll, also released on October 4, 90% of the public said they wanted Japan to state more clearly to the international community that the Senkakus are part of Japanese territory. The same day, Mainichi reported that Prime Minister Kan did do just that at the Asia-Europe Meeting in Brussels last week. He also had a brief meeting with China's Premier Wen Jiabao.

The move may help Kan recover lost ground in the polls. The public has been unforgiving about his handling of the Senkakus incident, with the October 4 Sankei poll finding 81.5% of the public calling his administration “weak-kneed” for allowing the release of the captain. Public support for the Kan cabinet plummeted from an all-time high of 64.2% in September to 48.5% in the Sankei poll. Other polls had similar results.

For now.

Kan did defuse a potentially dangerous situation while allowing China to look unreasonable and aggressive. Better, Kan extracted from the US statements that the Senkakus are part of part of the US-Japan Mutual Security Agreement and that the US will protect its Asian allies from Chinese bullying. He even accomplished a bi-lateral meeting with his Chinese counter-part to confirm the importance of Japan-China bi-lateral ties and good relations.

Maybe, in time, the Japanese public will realize what the Chinese government learned. China lost a lot of goodwill by ramping up a minor maritime clash. And Kan did pretty well for someone who pundits say shows little interest or acumen for foreign policy.

Dr William Brooks
APP Senior Fellow

Dr Brooks is quoted in the October 10th Japan Times discussing Kan's handling of the Senkaku issue and Japan's press reaction.