Country Report: Japan (July 2022)

The year 2022 has unfolded strikingly differently from Japanese expectations. Although already in retirement, Abe Shinzo had set the agenda that was expected to prevail. This included not […]

Candlelight Mandate, Moonshine Diplomacy, and Partisan Narratives

In 2016, conservative president Park Geun-hye’s trustpolitik crumbled with North Korea’s nuclear tests. This triggered a barrage of policy reversals, including decisions to (1) deploy the US anti-ballistic […]

Gambling on Great Power Relations

The four years from 2016 to 2019 saw both a high point in expectations that Seoul could reshape geopolitics in Northeast Asia and a low point in awareness […]

Explaining Japan’s About-Face on Russia

The Kishida-Biden and Quad summits of May 23-24, 2022 showcased not only Biden’s determination to turn the Ukraine war into a catalyst for a more vigorous US policy […]

Japan

US-Japan relations had been on the upswing under Abe, but various uncertainties lingered. Obama was considered too weak on China. Abe’s wooing of Putin and early antagonizing of […]