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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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U.S. Military Conducts Naval Drills with Japan & South Korea and Live-fire Exercise with ROKN

U.S. Military Conducts Naval Drills with Japan & South Korea and Live-fire Exercise with ROKN

It's a busy week for ever emerging East Asian Alliances....

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Robert Kelly: “What if Ron Paul Won”–Japan and South Korea

JSW pal Robert Kelly, assistant professor at Pusan National University and CNN contributor, has a series of posts at Asian Security Blog speculating on how a Ron Paul presidency would affect U.S. relations with a variety of its neighbors and traditional allies. Regarding Japan, Robert says in part: The real reason for [U.S. Forces Japan]...

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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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Japanese Cameras Catch Chinese Naval UAV Again

Japanese Cameras Catch Chinese Naval UAV Again

The Japanese MSDF once more catches a Chinese UAV in flight, but with shots of the deck, might we also learn more of the capacity of the ships carrying them?

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Japanese Light Aircraft Carrier Design: A Critique

Japanese Light Aircraft Carrier Design: A Critique

  ChinaSMACK has a post up on Chinese netizens’ reaction to a Japanese magazine article. The article in question included an artist’s impression of the ATD-X/Shinshin/F-3 fighter downing a Chinese J-20 fighter. Netizen reactions ranged from nationalistic to bemused. Of more interest however is the article the image was taken from, which depicts an indigenous...

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Japan's Strategic Geography, 1983

Japan’s Strategic Geography, 1983

Published in 1983, Strategic Atlas was one of several atlases published during the 1980s that blended world maps with political, economic and military figures and trends. It was the kind of well done set of infographics that really isn’t done anymore, particularly now that nobody wants to pay for content. I’ll be featuring maps from...

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Post-Disaster Opinion: China and the SDF

James Simpson takes a look at the Cabinet Office's recent survey on public attitudes toward the SDF, as well as a brief look at a small poll on Sino-Japanese opinion.

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Motohiro Tsuchiya: Patriotic Geeks Wanted to Counter a Cyber Militia

The Association of Japanese Institutes of Strategic Studies published a commentary by Keio Prof. Motohiro Tsuchiya examining the need of the Japanese government strengthen its defense against cyber-warfare, no doubt in consideration of the recent hacking scandals that rocked Japan at the end of last year:

Japan was one of the first countries to introduce cyber security measures, having set up the National Information Security Center (NISC) under the Cabinet Secretariat in 2005. The initial concerns were primarily technical issues, exhibiting little awareness that cyber security has to do with national security and crisis management. However, since major cyber-attacks were carried out against the US and South Korea in July 2009, Japan has been making preparations on the assumption that it could be the next target. The government drew up a special national plan titled “Information Security Strategy to Protect Japanese Nationals” in May 2010.

The real challenge of such a strategy is whether the government can secure good experts to counter militias and mercenaries. The rewards that the government can offer would be too small for competent geeks. Even if the government succeeds in employing them, it would be vulnerable unless it keeps them committed long enough – think about the risk of them being hired by adversary forces after their stint in the government! Success hinges on whether the government can secure patriotic geeks.

Read more at the AJISS Commentary site

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