Aug 2, 2008

Group of Three or G-13?

The Toyako, Hokkaido, summit witnessed moves to expand the Group of Eight forum of leading industrial nations through the addition of China, India and other new members. In a sense, of course, the G8 has already expanded, as seen in the meetings with African ...

Jun 13, 2008

Scrutable, 'invisible' Japan

The international community of scholars with an interest in Japan is rife with whisperings of Japan’s “invisibility.” These scholars note that international policy forums on security and global political issues often take place without any Japanese participants, and that even when Japanese do attend ...

Mar 28, 2008

Bringing in China and India

The rise of China and India is a frequent topic of discussion in the international community. In pondering the global repercussions of this rise and how the world might cope with it, it is instructive to examine how the international community dealt with Japan, ...

Feb 5, 2008

ASEAN through Asian eyes

A charter governing the activities of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations was adopted at the 13th ASEAN summit held in Singapore in November on the 40th anniversary of the regional grouping. Among other things, the document calls for the establishment of a Committee ...

Dec 31, 2007

China's public diplomacy

China’s public, or soft-power, diplomacy has traditionally consisted of “people’s diplomacy,” meaning the cultivation of people friendly to China within other countries. Under this method, China would nurture people sympathetic to its ideas within a country and use these figures to exert influence on ...

Nov 30, 2007

Culture as a common asset

Politics (political phenomena) has become disconnected from culture (cultural phenomena) in East Asia. In 2002, a South Korean schoolgirl was run over and killed by a U.S. military armored vehicle, prompting students to take to the streets of Seoul for candlelit protests against the ...

Sep 17, 2007

U.S. power and Japan's role

There have been no signs of deterioration in U.S. power over the past decade, measured either militarily, economically, or in terms of “soft power”; this is true both in absolute terms and in comparison with other countries. Granted, there has been a reduction in ...

Aug 7, 2007

A question of G8 legitimacy

Viewed from the media coverage of the Group of Eight Summit in Heiligendamm, Germany, the gathering was dominated by three main issues: environment, missile defense and clashes between demonstrators and police. At first glance, these three issues may appear unrelated, but under the surface ...

Jun 4, 2007

Improving Japan-Russia ties

The Japan-Russia Forum, an arena for intellectual dialogue between Japan and Russia, recently met for the first time in 2 1/2 years. This forum was originally launched for highly political reasons. The Northern Territories issue continues to cast a shadow over Japan-Russia relations, preventing ...

Apr 13, 2007

Legacy of Asian liberation

Taiwanese politics appears to be “boiling.” Scandals involving political leaders or their relatives have “heated” the political waters. Seen from the perspectives of democracy, freedom, human rights, the rule of law and justice — rather than from that of what effects the turmoil might ...