The future of the US-Japan alliance

Authored by: Christopher W. Hughes

East and South-East Asia

Print publication date:  March  2013
Online publication date:  July  2013

Print ISBN: 9781857436396
eBook ISBN: 9780203146026
Adobe ISBN:


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The future trajectory of the US-Japan alliance has been the subject of incessant speculation for much of the last two decades since the winding down of the Cold War. In some senses this type of speculation might come as a surprise given that the alliance has proven such a highly durable feature of the Asia-Pacific security landscape—commemorating in 2010 50 years since the signing of the revised security treaty—and with US and Japanese policy makers constantly touting that the bilateral security arrangement serves as the ‘cornerstone’ and ‘foundation’ for security in the region (Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan 2010). Indeed, many are familiar with former US Ambassador to Tokyo Mike M. Mansfield’s statement that the US-Japan alliance is ‘the most important relationship in the world, bar none’ (Mansfield 1989).

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