Wednesday, October 27, 2010

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.

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