Ringing in 2018 with the Indo-Pacific in Mind

Can the Indo-Pacific strategy be more than a slogan and actually become a policy goal? That’s certainly a challenge Japan is willing to take on in 2018. While the country officially rings in the new year over the course of three days, that tradition didn’t stop Foreign Minister Taro Kono from curtailing his vacation for a three-day tour of three countries bordering the Indian Ocean to bolster Tokyo’s clout as an Asian leader.

2018: The Year Ahead in Asia

What to Watch in 2018

The coming year is shaping up to be highly consequential for the Asia-Pacific. The distribution of the region’s economic, political, and military power is evolving rapidly, which will have profound implications for regional stability and for American interests. To inaugurate the Wilson Center Asia Program’s new blog Dispatches, the program’s staff has compiled brief analyses of what we believe to be some of the most critical issues to watch in 2018.

The Asian Financial Crisis, 20 Years On: A Conversation with Lawrence H. Summers

Bangkok’s decision in 1997 to float the baht after failing to support the currency from speculators led to a financial crisis not only in Thailand, but across Asia, most notably Indonesia and South Korea. Fears grew about the contagion effect of the meltdown spreading worldwide, as emerging market currency values dropped, asset prices plunges, and private debt grew in most of the Asia-Pacific region.

Japan’s Foreign Policy toward Korean Peninsula in the Détente Era: An Attempt at Multilayered Policy

Click here to download this Working Paper as a PDF.

NKIDP Working Paper #6

Japan’s Foreign Policy toward Korean Peninsula in the Détente Era: An Attempt at Multilayered Policy

Choi Kyungwon
November 2017

A Hat, a Round of Golf, and the New U.S.-Japan Relationship

President Trump’s 12-day trip to Asia included key meetings with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. What were the highlights and friction points in the discussions and where does this key Pacific alliance stand? The Wilson Center’s Shihoko Goto recaps the Tokyo summit in this edition of Wilson Center NOW.



Arms Sales Push May Further Trump-Abe Bromance

They’re both avid golfers. They both want their countries to be great powers. They are both determined not to appease North Korea and won’t back down from putting military confrontation on the table as one of the options for dealing with Pyongyang.

There is much that both Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and President Donald Trump have in common, and the Japanese leader made a point of highlighting the personal connection the two men have during their two-day summit meeting in Tokyo.

Can Japan Be Great Again?

In the end, the Japanese prime minister’s gamble paid off. Shinzo Abe’s big win in the latest election made clear once and for all his firm hold over the government.

That should allow him to move one step closer to achieving his lifelong objective: Making Japan a major power in Asia that is to be reckoned with once again.

Without doubt, with his reelection, Abe has enhanced his own standing in the annals of history: He is now well on his way to become Japan’s longest-serving prime minister since World War II.

Trump’s Vision for Asia: What to Expect from the U.S. Presidential Visit to the Asia-Pacific Region

President Trump departs today on a five-country visit to Asia, the longest overseas journey of his presidency. The North Korea nuclear crisis will cast its pall throughout, but trade imbalances, an emboldened China, and U.S. commitment to the region will all be key themes. Experts, including former U.S. assistant secretary of state Kurt Campbell, offered an incisive preview.  

Japan’s Choices: The Challenges Ahead Post-Election

Japan’s voters will head to the polls in late October, as the country grapples with tensions growing both inside and outside its borders.

Asia’s Reckoning: China, Japan, and the Fate of U.S. Power in the Pacific Century

Richard McGregor’s Asia’s Reckoning is a compelling account of the widening geopolitical cracks in a region that has flourished under an American security umbrella for more than half a century.