3 Ways the DPRK Has Just Hurt its "Blood Ally."

3 Ways the DPRK Has Just Hurt its “Blood Ally.”

Regarding the recent satellite launch/missile test conducted by the DPRK. Apologies for cross posting. First, it gives Japan and the US a useful issue to bash the PRC over the head with in the UNSC, especially if the PRC goes ahead and vetoes any further sanctions. China’s image will deteriorate in Japan further as perceptions...

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Japan to Sell Subs to Vietnam?

Japan to Sell Subs to Vietnam?

A little late off the mark with this one, but a few interesting pieces of information that might be worth watching out for in 2013. Martin Fackler has written an interesting article over at the New York Times which details Japan’s increasing security influence in Southeast Asia, covered often here at JSW. Some of the...

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The Japanese Election, the LDP's Manifesto, and Defense

The Japanese Election, the LDP’s Manifesto, and Defense

The Liberal Democratic Party, the party likely to gain the most seats in the upcoming election, has put out an election manifesto with two not particularly new but nonetheless interesting proposals. 1) For Japan to embrace exercising its right to collective self-defense (集団的自衛権行使) if necessary, either by constitutional change or constitutional reinterpretation if necessary. 2)...

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RUSI Japan

RUSI Japan

Nothing of substance right now, although there is much to talk about. M.Taylor Fravel has a great post up that reflects a lot of my own thoughts and apprehensions on issues regarding the current Senkaku conflict.* It seems to be reviving for the third time this year after having been pronounced dead twice. Essential reading also includes...

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Two Large Steps for the Australia-Japan Relationship on the Horizon?

Two Large Steps for the Australia-Japan Relationship on the Horizon?

Two very interesting pieces of news have surfaced in the last two days regarding the Australia-Japan relationship. On Wednesday morning (日) in New York, Japan and Australia, on the heels of the recent two-plus-two dialogue in Sydney, agreed to further deepening of the strategic partnership, and explicitly committed themselves to making a breakthrough on the Economic Partnership Agreement...

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Financial Times: China Eyeing Okinawa in the Long-term?

Financial Times: China Eyeing Okinawa in the Long-term?

While the Western media has at times taken great delight in publishing somewhat fantastical stories about the influence that Japanese ‘nationalists’ hold over the contemporary Japanese imagination, China’s own home grown group with questionable interpretations of history for the most part seemed to escape the attention of analysts and journalists – until recently. Part of this...

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Japan's Regional Security Environment and Possibilities for Conflict

Japan’s Regional Security Environment and Possibilities for Conflict

The next 5 months could be one of high drama and tension in East Asia geopolitics due to various leadership transitions and elections. In South Korea we have already seen election year sensitivities coming to have real life policy consequences with the last-minute cancellation of the ACSA/GSOMIA military accords between Japan and the ROK. With the presidential...

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Japan's MSDF leads and China's PLA(N) follows

Japan’s MSDF leads and China’s PLA(N) follows

In among Japan’s much more proactive approach to Southeast Asia, including stronger commitments of aid and security cooperation to Indonesia, Philippines, and Vietnam, and increased tension over the Senkaku islands due to developments in Japan’s domestic politics, you could be forgiven for thinking that Japan and China have completely burned their bridges in the last...

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The New Japanese Defense Minister and the Japanese Media Response

The New Japanese Defense Minister and the Japanese Media Response

Much like with the previous two defense ministers, the Japanese media has not let the selection of Professor Morimoto go without comment, albeit for quite different reasons this time around. One narrative was that of the selection potentially leading to improved relations between the Noda administration and the Obama administration. The US Department of Defense...

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Japan's New Defense Minister: Morimoto Satoshi

Japan’s New Defense Minister: Morimoto Satoshi

As mentioned by James Noda has selected Takushoku Professor Morimoto Satoshi to replace Tanaka Naoki as Defense Minister. While he is an academic and Japan’s first non-politician (民間人) Defense Minister/JDA Chief since the establishment of the JDA in 1954, he is certainly not short on experience and knowledge of both defense issues and the political system....

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Japan's MSDF to make a Port Call in Manila amid Tensions

Japan’s MSDF to make a Port Call in Manila amid Tensions

When? Next week it would seem. Hot on the heels of a promise to supply a number of JCG vessels to the Philippines, Japan is now also sending three JMSDF naval training ships to Manila for a four-day port call from 28 May to 31 May. The ships are reported to be the JS Kashima (TV-3505),...

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Alliance Diversification Watch: Japan and the Philippines

Alliance Diversification Watch: Japan and the Philippines

Is Japan about to enter the South China Sea dispute in a concrete way and provide up to 10 Japanese Coast Guard  Ships to the Philippines? I guess the timing could not be better for the Philippines given the current tensions surrounding the Scarborough Shoal standoff. However the news is not yet official as the...

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