April 27, 2012

U.S. and Japan Must Address Key Issues to Maintain Strong Alliance in Light of China's Rise, Say Experts in New CNAS Study

The U.S.-Japan alliance is the
cornerstone of peace and prosperity in the Asia-Pacific region, but it will
confront difficult challenges between now and 2025 that could greatly affect
its future. In The China
Challenge: Military, Economic and Energy Choices Facing the U.S.-Japan
released today by the Center for a New American Security
in advance of Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's visit to the United
States, four experts argue that the United States and Japan must address a host
of defense, economic and energy security issues over the next decade if the
alliance is to maintain its power as China continues to rise.

The China Challenge: Military, Economic and Energy Choices
Facing the U.S.-Japan Alliance

Dr. Patrick Cronin, Zachary Hosford and Daniel Katz of CNAS and Paul Giarra of
Global Strategies and Transformation make the following concrete
recommendations for the alliance that will help the two nations build an even
stronger alliance over the coming decade:

  • Launch
    a new, high-level strategic dialogue to reassess the ends, ways and means
    of the alliance, beginning with its basic objectives;
  • Seek
    the long-term integration of a rising China into a global and regional
    security architecture, including through a high-level trilateral security
  • Elevate
    the importance of energy security within the alliance, in part by creating
    - in conjunction with China - a major trilateral dialogue on energy
  • Work
    with allies and partners to incorporate energy security into the
    Trans-Pacific Partnership;
  • Engage
    emerging economies, such as China, through trade and investment to
    maximize employment and growth opportunities in the United States and
  • Prepare
    to defeat anti-access and area-denial capabilities of potential
    adversaries; and
  • Plan
    for the gradual integration of all U.S. bases in Japan with those of the
    Japanese Self-Defense Forces.

authors conclude that "Whether a powerful U.S.-Japan alliance will endure
into the next decade and beyond chiefly depends on how well Washington and
Tokyo deal with major military, economic and energy challenges. Although each
dimension of power is complex, basic policy choices will require coming to
grips with the challenge and opportunity posed by a rising China."

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The Center for a New American Security
(CNAS) is an independent and nonpartisan research
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and defense policies. CNAS leads efforts to help inform and prepare the
national security leaders of today and tomorrow.

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