Japan

Senkaku Breakthrough: Taiwan and Japan agree on fishing rights

Japan and Taiwan have signed a ground-breaking agreement on fishing rights that leaves China isolated in the territorial dispute over Senkaku/Diaoyutai islands. According to Taipei Times, major elements of the agreement are: intervention-free fishing zone for Taiwanese fishing boats in waters between 27° north latitude and the Sakishima Islands, Okinawa Prefecture; furthermore, Taiwan is given...

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NY Times: "Japan Shifting Further Away From Pacifism"

NY Times: “Japan Shifting Further Away From Pacifism”

To be sure, the article itself is solid and talks to all the right people, including Professor Richard Samuels and Associate Professor Michishita Narushige who are both outstanding scholars of Japan’s security strategy. Ultimately, despite appearances below, the article doesn’t bother me all that much. But it provides a good opportunity to reflect on a few...

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Japanese Media Now Openly Talking about Japan-Australia Soryu Deal

Japanese Media Now Openly Talking about Japan-Australia Soryu Deal

Today the Nikkei featured an article (日) that raised once again the possibility of Japan transferring the technology underpinning the prized Soryu submarine to Australia. The article did not offer much additional detail about how the process from here is likely to unfold, although it did frame the technology transfer as part of a supposedly mutual...

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Tekken At Sea: Japanese Destroyer vs. Chinese Frigate

Tekken At Sea: Japanese Destroyer vs. Chinese Frigate

Last week a Chinese Jiangwei-II (Type 053H3) class frigate locked its fire control radar on a Japanese destroyer. The name of the Chinese frigate was not mentioned, but the Japanese destroyer involved in the incident was JS Yudachi (DD-103), of the Murasame class. After being lit up by the Chinese radar, Yudachi took evasive action....

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To Counter China, Defense Ministry Considering F-15s at Civilian Airport

Well, this is certainly interesting: Japan is considering using a civil airfield in the Ryukyu islands to base F-15s, because those based on Okinawa are too far away. The planes would be stationed on Shimojijima Island, which is much closer to the Japan-administered Senkakus, which China claims as the Diaoyu, than to Okinawa’s prefectural capital...

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New Minister and a Change of Pace at Ichigaya

New Minister and a Change of Pace at Ichigaya

Incoming Defense Minister Onodera's foreign policy background and Ichigaya's new breeze of life over the New Year.

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PRC in 1950: "Senkaku Islands" as Part of Okinawa?

PRC in 1950: “Senkaku Islands” as Part of Okinawa?

Jiji Press in Japan went big yesterday (日) on an exclusive revolving around historical PRC government documents related to PRC awareness of the territorial dispute over the islands, publishing a number of articles and commentaries in rapid fire succession. The Japanese government’s position has been that the PRC, at least, only made a claim to the islands after...

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First Application of Japan's New Arms Exports Principles to a PKO

First Application of Japan’s New Arms Exports Principles to a PKO

One of the many justifications that the Japanese government referred to in revising Japan’s weapons export restrictions was the potential to assist nations being rebuilt after a conflict or humanitarian disaster.  Previously the SDF was unable to leave behind any heavy machinery or other equipment that may have been useful to such nations. Today, the...

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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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Senkakus/Diaoyu Islands Standoff De-Escalates

When China describes something as a “core interest”, it’s time to sit up and pay attention. A core interest is exactly what it sounds like — something that China views as essential to China’s economy and security. Perhaps more importantly the core interest label tends to denote something that China believes is not open to...

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On the Misuse of the Reconstruction Budget

On the Misuse of the Reconstruction Budget

James Simpson takes issue with the reporting of misuse of reconstruction budget funds by the Ministry of Defense.

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