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  • Abe Shinzo: Japan’s Visionary Statesman

    Abe Shinzo made his mark as an astute statesman in international politics with intellectual bandwidth and a global vision to conceptualise grand strategic constructs such as the Free and Open Indo-Pacific anchored on universal values.

    September 03, 2020

    Russo-Japanese War: An Examination of Limited War Strategy

    The Russo-Japanese War was fought well over a hundred years ago and symbolised the rise of Japan, as it defeated Russia by executing a near-perfect limited war strategy. Japan incisively defined limited political objectives and calibrated its war strategy accordingly.

    July-September 2020

    Rewiring Japan’s National Security Strategy in Post-COVID Indo-Pacific

    With Chinese unilateral efforts altering the maritime status quo on the one hand and lack of progress on denuclearisation of the Korean Peninsula on the other, Japan is revisiting its strategic options.

    August 20, 2020

    Pre-emptive Strike Capability: Shifting Winds in Japan?

    Japan’s quest for pre-emptive strike capability indicates a major shift in its defence doctrine. It is only a matter of time before Japan takes up such an offensive defence doctrine carrying a high possibility of conflict initiation/escalation with it.

    July 24, 2020

    Between Olympics and Pandemic: Abe’s Run-up to 2021

    Whether Abe can turn the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic into an opportunity to demonstrate decisive leadership will define Japan’s future course, as the resilience of the economy and good governance is at stake.

    April 12, 2020

    Japan’s Lost Moment in Osaka

    While Japan envisions its role as a leading promoter of rules-based liberal international order, the G20 tested Japan’s leadership in championing the cause of trade liberalisation and resisting protectionism.

    July 12, 2019

    Japan’s Strategic Calculations: Constraints and Responses

    As the East Asian regional order becomes fragmented, how is Prime Minister Shinzo Abe managing Tokyo’s strategic interests within the US-Japan-China relations?

    January 17, 2019

    Defending Japan: Reviewing the 2018 White Paper

    Three key developments unfolded in Japan in August 2018: the Ministry of Defence (MOD) released its annual Defence White Paper; requested a 2.1 per cent increase in the 2019 budget; and instituted an Exploratory Committee on the Future of Self Defence Forces (SDF) with the objective of reviewing the current National Defence Program Guidelines (NDPG) and the Mid-Term Defence Program (MTDP). Analysing these developments in the backdrop of Prime Minister Abe’s top priorities—managing the United States (US)-Japan alliance under the Trump Presidency and delivering on the ‘great responsibility’ of redefining Japanese post-war security orientation—unpacks Tokyo’s key challenges. These are, essentially, balancing between sharing greater burden within the alliance framework to ensure regional security on one hand, and weighing regional sensitivities and deeply fractured domestic constituencies on the other.

    October-December 2018

    Japan’s Self-Defense Forces: A Decade after Reorganisation

    Japan banks heavily on her security alliance with the United States (US) to ensure availability of requisite military capability in the region. China’s economic and military capabilities have grown in the last two decades, closing the gap with the US. With diminishing differential, especially with respect to China, the US’ deterrence power has gradually declined. Under these conditions, Japan has to develop Self-Defense Forces (SDF) capabilities to ensure that it, in combination with its alliance partner, the US, is able to meet national security challenges.

    October-December 2018

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