Enduring and New Frontiers in U.S.-Japan Relations

Asia Pacific Bulletin


Washington, DC: East-West Center

Available From: February 24, 2021
Publication Date: February 24, 2021


The East-West Center in Washington, in collaboration with the Tokyo Review, explores the possibilities for continuing and creating new pathways of cooperation between the United States and Japan under the Biden and Suga administrations.

Partisan Biases in U.S.-Japan Relations
Paul Nadeau, cofounder and editor of Tokyo Review, explains that “History shapes many Japanese decision-makers apprehensions of working with a Democratic administration.” 

Biden Must Assist Japan and South Korea with the History Issue
Tom Le, Assistant Professor of Politics at Pomona College, explains that “Public American neutrality allows China to exploit weaknesses within U.S. regional alliances.” 

A U.S.-Japan Dual-Citizen Arrangement Can Benefit Both Countries
Rei Coleman, government affairs professional, explains that “Bi-national Americans currently on the ground in multinational corporations and other entities in Japan are playing a part in economic and cultural synergy, while contributing to a more well-informed U.S. stance on a number of important bilateral issues.” 

Increasing Support for U.S.-Japan Alliance in Okinawa is Not a Pipedream
Hillary C. Dauer, U.S. Foreign Service Officer, explains that “Many in both Tokyo and Okinawa admit that the Suga administration lacks sufficient on-the-ground knowledge in the prefecture to connect positively with Okinawans.” 

The United States and Japan Should Cooperate to Include India in Indo-Pacific Economic Governance
Kensuke Yanagida, former Visiting Fellow at the East-West Center in Washington, explains that “U.S. bilateral trade negotiations with India, and Japan`s effort in promoting an East Asia regional trade agreement that includes India share objectives and interests and hence can be coordinated.” 

Japan Can Remain an Important U.S. Ally Despite Demographic Challenges
Mina Pollmann, PhD candidate in the MIT Department of Political Science, explains that “Despite positive attitudes and media coverage of the JSDF’s role in disaster relief following the 2011 Triple Disaster, Japan’s pacifist and antimilitarist culture still makes the JSDF an undesirable job prospect for many citizens.” 

The U.S.-Japan Relationship: Modeling New Frontiers in Subnational Diplomacy
Sarah Sieloff and Sean Connell, Council on Foreign Relations Hitachi Fellow and Senior Fellow at the Mansfield Foundation respectively, explain that: “The U.S.-Japan relationship… offers a fertile environment for developing and implementing new models for subnational diplomacy, with global applicability.” 

United States-Japan Cooperation on Democracy and Equity Should Tackle Gender and Racial Justice
Kristin Wilson and Jackie Steele, Young Professionals Program participant at the East-West Center in Washington and CEO of enjoi Diversity & Innovation, respectively, explain that: “Under the new administration, the United States and Japan have ample opportunity to reinvigorate democratic advancement, especially on gender and racial justice.”  

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