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Suzuki Yoshikatsu
  • Suzuki Yoshikatsu 
  • By this author: 12 Latest posted: 2016.02.08
Senior commentator at Jiji Press and editor-in-chief of Diplomacy magazine. Analyzes Japan’s foreign affairs and domestic policies. Joined the Political Affairs Department at Jiji Press after graduating from Waseda University. Served two stints in the United States, one based in Washington, DC, and the other as bureau chief in New York. Works include Imada ni tsuzuku “haisenkoku gaikō” (A Defeated Nation’s Diplomacy: Japanese Relations with Two Great Powers) and Ozawa Ichirō wa naze TV de nagurareta ka (Why Ichiro Ozawa Was Hit on TV: Visible Politics and Invisible Politics in a Televised Age).
Abe’s Indo-Pacific “Security Diamond” Begins to Shine2016.02.08

Last December Prime Minister Abe Shinzō wrapped up his 2015 diplomatic agenda with two events highlighting his “diamond” strategy for regional maritime security: a state visit to India and talks with Australian Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull in Tokyo. The concept of a partnership between Japan, the United States, Australia, and India began to take on substance after Abe’s visit to Washington i…

For Abe, the Neighbors Remain Hard to Reach2013.09.02

Prime Minister Abe arrives in Belfast on June 16 to attend the 2013 G8 summit. Photo credit: AP/Aflo Since he took office in late December 2012, Prime Minister Abe Shinzō has been conducting his strategic diplomacy in a manner that seems to show the consistent application of two rules. One is to avoid compromising on issues involving sovereignty or history in handling Japan’s relationships wit…

Abe’s Three-Pronged Diplomatic Strategy2013.04.18

Kishi Nobusuke, prime minister of Japan from February 1957 to July 1960 and grandfather of current Prime Minister Abe Shinzō, decided to travel to Southeast Asia in May 1957 on his first trip overseas after assuming office. Early on he had been inclined to make the United States his first destination, but as it turned out he made a round of visits to countries in Southeast Asia first. Why? Kishi h…

Asia Diplomacy in President Obama’s Second Term2012.12.13

During their first term in office, US presidents have a tendency to focus on reelection. In their second term, they begin to think about their future place in history. President Barack Obama is unlikely to be an exception in this respect, although as the nation’s first black president his name is already written in the history books. His administration faces a number of domestic issues, many of wh…

How Long Until the Next Election?2012.11.05

The tug of war over the timing of the next general election continues. Will the prime minister dissolve the House of Representatives and call an election before the end of 2012, or will the government limp on into the New Year? Neither of the two main protagonists in this tussle—the prime minister and Democratic Party of Japan leader Noda Yoshihiko and Abe Shinzō, his counterpart in the opposition…

A Glimpse Behind the Curtain: A US-Based Political Scientist Considers the Kim Jong-un Regime2012.10.18

Professor Han S. Park of the University of Georgia in the United States, who helped arrange former US President Jimmy Carter’s visit to North Korea, appeared in Tokyo on August 8 to give a lecture about the situation on the Korean Peninsula, at the invitation of an organization that supports North Korea. Park graduated from Seoul National University in 1963 and later earned a master’s degree an…

Going Beyond a “Faith-Based” US-Japan Alliance2012.08.07

The US-Japan security arrangement created by the United States after the end of World War II had two primary aims: to create a bulwark against communism and to prevent the remilitarization of Japan (referred to as keeping the “cap in the bottle”). Sixty years later, with the end of the Cold War between the United States and former Soviet Union, the role of the US-Japan security arrangement changed…

Putin and the Northern Territories—A Reality Check2012.06.08

Vladimir Putin returned to the Kremlin on May 7, after a four-year hiatus, to embark on his third term as president of the Russian Federation. Putin had held the same position for eight years (2000–08), and now he is guaranteed another six. In Japan, the media have greeted Putin’s comeback with hopeful speculation on the chances for a breakthrough in the longstanding territorial dispute between th…

The Hidden Side to Noda’s Frontiers Project2012.05.09

Prime Minister Noda Yoshihiko is actively working on building a long-term political vision using the word “frontiers” as a label and theme for the initiative. Following in the footsteps of Prime Minister Ōhira Masayoshi (1978–80), who created nine policy research groups during his term in office, Noda has put together the Frontier Subcommittee of the Council on National Strategy and Policy, provid…

Japan Plays Catch Up as US-China Relations Evolve in the Pacific2012.04.09

Chinese Vice President Xi Jinping, the heir apparent to the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party, made his US diplomatic debut in February with a visit to Washington, DC. The warm welcome he received included a 19-gun salute (a first for a vice president) and nearly an hour and a half with Barack Obama—an unusually long meeting for a relatively junior visiting dignitary. When Hu Jintao visite…

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