Following is the full transcript of the February 27th, 2020 Hudson event titled Historical Reflections on U.S.-Japan Relations: The 60th Anniversary of the 1960 Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security
Please note: This transcript is based off a recording and mistranslations may appear in text.
Patrick Cronin: I’m Patrick Cronin, I’m the Asia Pacific Security chair at the Hudson Institute and want to welcome everybody to what I know will be a fantastic discussion here by our Japan chair, H.R. McMaster, who’s joined today by a star studded cast of historical policy makers and historians to talk on this 60th anniversary year of this remarkable US-Japan treaty about the history of US-Japan relations, the US security relationship with Japan, and maybe some speculation about the future, where this history takes us. Without further ado I’d like to hand the floor over to Hudson’s Institute Japan Chair Lt.Gen, Retired H.R. McMaster.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thanks, Patrick. Thank you so much. What a privilege it is to be here on what is really, I think, an occasion for celebration. Celebration of what I think is the most important treaty for peace and security in the Pacific. A treaty that has produced tremendous opportunity, not only for the peoples of United States and for Japan, but the peoples of the world. We are really privileged today to have an amazing panel of historians, and experts, and practitioners.
First, Ambassador Kagzutoshi Aikawa, great to have you here. [foreign language 00:01:19] to everybody. Good to see everybody. He is in part responsible for this great alliance that we had. He’s been working on it across his career. It’s his 4th tour now, for the Ambassador here, in the United States. He’s been stationed here in Washington and in New York and in the great state of Oregon out there on the west coast where I am now. He is also an expert, not only in Japanese American/US relations, but also in the Western Hemisphere. In his role as Ambassador also the representative to the organization of the American States as well. But across his career he never shied away from a tough assignment. He’s been to Libya and he’s been the ambassador to Iran as well.
There’s nobody to better understand the importance of our free and open societies, preserving that freedom and our openness in what is really a growing competition, I think we can all agree, with closed authoritarian systems. He is the perfect person to help us celebrate this treaty of mutual cooperation’s security, which goes all the way back to 1951. Six years, only six years, after we were mortal enemies. I think we should remember about the great accomplishment the Japanese people, really at that same six year mark, matching the pre-war GDP, in what is an astonishing, miraculous, recovery out of history’s most destructive war.
Of course the treaty was revised to the current version. There’s been nobody better, I think, to communicate to us the importance of the treat then Prime Minister Abe, who in his address to the joint session of congress in 2015 called it an Alliance of Hope, and he called on all of us. I mean, this is an alliance that makes the United States better, myself, because Prime Minister Abe told us that the finest asset the Unites States has is to give the world hope. So Ambassador, thank you for being with us. And thank you for yours and Prime Minister Abe’s leadership in this wonderful alliance we are celebrating today.
There’s nobody better to give us a historical perspective on the alliance than Dr. Michael Green. He is an author of an extraordinary book, a magisterial book I would say, by more than providence which covers the American and the Pacific since 1783. Of course, the book, there’s no surprise, focuses in on large measure on the long relationship between the United States and Japan. I think he’ll remind us of when we realized very soon after the war, when George Kennan wrote 1948. He said in 1948 that our relationship, the United States relationship with Japan will be the cornerstone of the Pacific Security system and was the cornerstone of what became known as the San Francisco system of Alliances, that again brought such tremendous peace and prosperity.
Dr Green is an Associate Professor and Director of the Asia Studies at the Walsh school of Foreign Service at Georgetown University. He’s the Senior Vice President and Japan chair at another think tank you might have heard of, the Center for Strategic International Studies. He was the senior director for Asia in the Bush administration. So you have a scholar who has also been a foreign policy practitioner as well.
we have a distinguished member of our panel, Dr. James Auer. Some of you may know that the Treaty of Mutual Security and Cooperation is the longest lasting treaty between great powers since the Peace of Westphalia in 1648. Now, Dr. Auer was not there at the Peace of Westphalia-
Dr. James E. Auer: Just right after.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: But he has been there for almost all the history of the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security and he’s played an exceptional role in helping to shape the relationship within that treaty. A relationship that was really designed from the outset to be flexible and adaptive. I think he’ll probably talk to us about how our tremendous alliance has adapted to emerging challenges to national and international security. He’s director the US Japan Center and Professor of Meratis at Vanderbilt University. He has been not only a proponent from an academic perspective for our tremendous alliance, but he’s actually helped shaped in personally as well with over a decade of service in the office of secretary of defense with specific responsibility for this great alliance.
We have Dr. Robert Eldridge. Who I think can help us explain, probably better than anybody, the evolution of this wonderful alliance, from the Yoshida Doctrine, which really called on Japan focusing on its economic revival rather than defense to what we see now as a true partnership in our mutual defense. He can help us understand the history of neutrality in Japan and how it’s evolving today. He has a doctorate in Japanese politics and diplomacy and history from… how to you pronounce the name of the University?
Dr. Robert Eldridge: From Colby.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Oh, Colby University. Okay. I couldn’t read my own handwriting. He’s a professor at Osaka University at the School of International Public Policy. He has also worked as a practitioner as well. He’s worked with the marine corps and our forces in the region. He’s a senior researcher at Naksoni Ushahero Peace Institute. What is astonishing to me, he is the author of 90 books. 90 books. And his latest is Iwo Jima and the Bonin Islands in US Japan Relations. There’re some copies here for you as well, but it’s such a privilege for me to be with all of you. I’m going to listen and learn from your opening comments, then I’ll direct a couple of questions to the panel after which we’ll be able to hear what’s on your minds and where you’d like to take the discussion, thank you. Thank you Ambassador.
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: Thank you General. Well thank you everyone involved in this panel. I am very honored and privileged to participate. This year is marking the 60th anniversary of Japan-US security race. And at the outset that I just wanted to tip my hat to my co-panelists, because they are engaged in … They have long engaged in Japan-US Alliance management, and contributed to the alliance progress in their own various capacities in the past.
So, on behalf of the embassy, let me thank all of you for your great contribution service to this inviolable Alliance. And with that, let me take my take of my hat over as the embassy personnel, and with the usual caveat that everything that I say is on my own doesn’t necessarily affect the government of Japan’s views.
As General said, five years ago, Prime Minister Abe, he went to the US Congress, the Joint Meeting of the US Congress and addressed the joint meeting, and he just turned our alliance, as Alliance of Hope. In the history of our bilateral relations the US, for many Japanese, The US has been serving as a beacon of hope. So let me just explain. 160 years ago, actually, this year marks 160th anniversary of that county matter. The first delegation of a 72 best and brightest Samurai delegations Shogunate government came to the United States on the warship named Kanrin Maru. And Kanrin Maru was one of the first warships that Edo Shogun government came to possess.
Just seven years after the Commodore Perry visited Turaga and now Yokosuka. The delegation created many of what I call the Founding Fathers of Japan, modern Japan, and one of them was Yukichi Fukuzawa, the founder Keio University. And the delegation was received by then President James Buchanan and was escorted to the Washington Navy Yard. And most of them obviously were quite astounded by the fact that the American industrial might at the time. But FUkuzawa was actually not impressed. But he was impressed was that I he was asking around where are the grandchildren George Washington, and nobody seemed to know or care.
George Washington himself does not have a kid, but the late Washington… That’s not the point. The point is Mr. Fukuzawa coming from the Shogun Samurai political system where the leaders hereditary succession is a political norm of the political system, instinctively understood what the democracy is about. So Fukuzawa, the democratic body which the United States has been founded, served as a beacon of hope, as Japan entered the world of the 19th century as a newly created sovereign state. Now, I might add that very difficult Navy Ship Kanrin Maru, the first friendship between an American naval officer John Brooke, and Japanese named John Manjiro was forged through mutual respect, and it was recorded in the diary of officer John Brooke.
In the early 20th century under Imperal Japan constitutional monarch system, its political system evolved into what we call Taisho democracy where two party system did function, but it didn’t last much. And choosing allies is critical test of survival for any state. Imperal Japan, chose the United Kingdom as an ally in the midst of early 20th century, centuries balance of power world. And that Alliance lasted 20 years, ending with the Washington Treaty of 1922 and in 1940, Imperial Japan chose Germany and Italy as allies, and that Tripartite Pact only lasted five years.
And it only the period of militarism invaded into the everyday life of ordinary Japanese people and the people were not actually very happy. I asked my grandmother how life is like and she was not very happy. But that could be one of the reason why Japan accepted U.S. colonial forces without much resistance. On the other hand, today’s Japan-U.S. Alliance has continued for more than 60 years, and it remains to be very active mainly because it was firmly grounded in our shared values, democracy, human rights, and rules of law. And those shared values are becoming increasingly important today’s strategic environment where the newly emerging challenges and opportunities such as rapid rise of China, put in the rule-based order in the region to the test.
Where the vision of Free and Open Indo-Pacific, Japan and United States has been working together, to promote rule of law, freedom of navigation and economic connectivity, security cooperation in the region. With time constraints, let me just conclude. Well, I cannot conclude without thanking Tomodachi operations. Tomodachi operations actually is actually still serving as a linchpin for Japan, US Alliance. The American people and the US government stood by us that difficult time and Tomodachi operation did make a huge difference on the ground.
So, Japanese public remains immensely regretful for the operations. The bond between our two peoples are stronger than ever. Between democracies, the People to People ties ultimate foundation on which the Alliance is built, and the ties are strong and robust today. So thank you.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you so much ambassador. Thank you. Michael.
Dr. Michael Green: Thanks, Gen. McMaster, I want to really express my appreciation for H.R., hosting this discussion and focusing on Japan and his post government career. But in particular for the historical consciousness he brought to the NSC when he was in charge. I was trained as a political scientist, I worked on the NSC for five years. And like every other political scientists in the Bush administration, Victor Cha, Peter Feaver, I came out and I became a historian and concluded that is the best strategic training. So H.R brought that from the beginning of his job, and I think it was clear in the 2017 National Security Strategy and the Free and Open Indo-Pacific strategy, very historically grounded.
I also want to say what an incredible privilege it is to have James Emerson sitting next to me. I, like every good kid who grew up in Washington kid of government officials, I was going to join the Foreign Service, and I was going work on Europe. So I went to rural Japan to study martial arts and sort of do something different because before I became a good cold warrior and stare down the Soviets in the Fulda gap. I learned Japanese so I was taking a course on Japan at Syce as a master student, and my professor George Packard said, “Write a paper on the U.S.-Japan alliance”, which was very obscure, and he said, “I know a guy in the Pentagon who actually runs the whole Alliance, his name is Jim Auer.”
So I went to see Jim in the Pentagon in 1985, or six. And my professor told me, this is a guy who runs the entire U.S.-Japan Alliance. So I went to his office in the Pentagon, which was half the size of the stage. It had a window this big, the wallpaper was coming off. There was a half eaten lunch, and I thought, I want to be that guy because there weren’t that many jobs in the U.S. government in those days. Where one person, one person could build an alliance, and a military and military strategic relationship that really by almost everyone’s account helped to win the Cold War. So pretty exciting stuff.
People often comment on how remarkable it is that the United States went from being the worst of enemies to the best of friends within a generation. When I worked for President Bush, he was just absolutely fascinated by the fact that one of his very closest friends was Prime Minister Koizumi. And his own father had fought against Japan. And he would talk about this in speeches in Iowa and around the country when he was running for reelection. And the audiences loved it. It was quite inspiring to him. But being a good NSC guy, I didn’t tell him it was wrong. The fact is, yes, we went from being the worst of enemies, to the best of friends in a generation. But the reality is that when you look back on American history, to the early 19th century, most Americans strategic thinkers about Asia were convinced we would be the best of friends.
In 1815, the first US Navy ship entered the Pacific, the USS Essex, which had been attacking British shipping in the War of 1812 and could not return to its port in Boston, because of the 74 gunship of the lines of the Royal Navy blocking away. So they went around the Cape and started attacking British shipping in the Pacific. And when Captain Porter came back to Washington in 1816, he went to see the secretary of the Navy, the start to the war, and Americans knew about China. Because we know about China trade he told him about this island nation Japan, that someday this would be the anchor of our position the Pacific.
Generation half after that Commodore Perry, Navy. I’m sorry generals of Navy heavy discussion. Commodore Perry opens Japan’s very famous, less famous, he came back to the U.S. and gave a series of speeches in the mid to late 1850s. Obscured to history because the Civil War was coming, and he argued that someday the Pacific would be secured by ships bearing the stars and stripes, the rising sun and the Cross of St. George the British. He basically in 1857 proposed the quad. Because if you think about it, US, Japan… what are the remnants of the British Empire in Asia today? It’s Australia and India. And that was 1857. Mohan, Alfred Thayer Mohan, maybe our greatest strategic thinker in American history in the 1890s predicted a different quad he included Germany, but essentially the US, Japan and Britain.
So most of our history when people in Washington in the United States thought about securing the Pacific, keeping threats as far west as possible, they immediately thought about Japan. Because of geography but also because as Perry put it in his speeches in Philadelphia, New York in 1857, Japan is going to be not just the geography of the island chain, but Japan was going to be the country that showed the rest of Asia, the benefits of modernizing, of creating rule of law, and of being friends with United State. And he said something that’s politically incorrect today, but you know, U.S. Navy officers were very Christian in those days, unlike the Royal Navy.
He was a very devout man, but he said, we must not try to Christianize Japan. He was very clear that the success of Japan on its own modernizing, would be a success for the United States. And he was thinking although he didn’t use these words about a multipolar Asia where the success of states developing resilience, governance was a success for the U.S. And that’s our strategy today. That’s the strategy in the 2017, National Security Strategy report, and Japan is an absolutely critical, the critical hub of that vision. That is a much longer history than the much more tragic history that most of us think about.
We didn’t just come out of World War II and suddenly realize Japan will be our friend. That was actually the through line, the norm of American strategic thinking. In a way it’s true for Japan too. The ambassador mentioned the Kanrin Maru, the first Tokugawa Shogunate ship, which was designed by Katsu Kaishu, a very famous Tokyo official, really the founder of the Imperial Japanese Navy. Katsu went to Edo to assassinate, excuse me, Sakomoto Ryoma, the famous Meiji leader went to Edo to assassinate Katsu, but instead became a student.
And Sakamoto, who studied what Katsu Kaishu studied realized that Japan as modernized would be maritime power, and it would need to align with other maritime powers. For those of you who know Japanese history, he convinced [inaudible 00:22:07] to take on the eight key principles which were about international commerce, strong Navy, and basically aligning with the Anglo-American maritime in Germany. So in some ways, the history of Japan is a history of a maritime nation with a natural alignment for the United States.
And the 1930s and 40s were a bit of an aberration in that longer history, and I would argue Abe grand strategy is not new, it is Katsu Kaishu, Sakamoto Ryoma, it is a maritime strategy. So if you think about the longer history of our two countries because of geography, and of course, geography creates political culture. We are natural allies. And the fact that we fought was the aberration. It’s not the miracle that we became friend is the tragedy that we didn’t.
One other comment, since we’re being historical, of course, this is the 60th anniversary of the 1960 mutual Security Treaty. Remarkable treaty, flexible, enduring, resilient. The treaty, for most of its history was a treaty that under Article five, committed the US to the defense of Japan and under Article six committed Japan to support basis for the US for the steer to the far East. But the dirty little story of the treaty through most of this history was that Japan faced the dilemma Thucydides pointed to in the Peloponnesian Wars of smaller allies, city states, which is, on the one hand, if you’re too close to the US, you’re getting trapped. On the other hand, if you’re too far away, you risk getting abandoned.
And so throughout Japanese history of this treaty, the effort in Tokyo is how do you manage this? How do you stay close enough to the Americans, that they won’t abandon you but not so close that you get entrapped? And the answer was in Article nine the Peace Corps of Constitution, which was interpreted by the cabinet, legal Bureau, the LDP, the government as meaning Japan cannot be integrated in the use of force, Japan cannot do collective self defense. That’s how it was interpreted. And that gave Japan an alibi to avoid involvement in Vietnam, any commitment to Korea, any commitment to Taiwan. And that was workable as long as the threats were not in Japan’s direct face. Well, today, we’re in a very different world.
So the second and last point I would make thinking about the history of this alliance and this treaty we’ve had since thinking 1960s. Over the last few years, we have seen a remarkable transformation that historians will all point to, because after five decades of finding an alibi to avoid jointness, interoperability, combined arms with the United States, because of the China challenge, largely but not exclusively Prime Minister Abe in the Japanese government have changed interpretation, as many of you know of the Japanese constitution to allow integration in the use of force. And not just for the defense of Japan.
There are lots of caveats we can talk about. But this alliance is now moving into a new chapter from alibi, Alliance management. How does Japan stick, keep out of being in trap with US into a new chapter that I think is going to be defined by jointness, interoperability, command and control relationships. And that’s the future. That’s the agenda we’re going to have to work on because of the urgency of the problems we face. We have to do it together. And the consensus is there, I think in both capitals. Thanks.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you.
Dr. Michael Green: Thank you.
Dr. James E. Auer: I had the honor to meet General McMaster for the first time today. But I feel that I had met him a long, long time ago, because I read his book on Vietnam, published in 1994.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: 97’.
Dr. James E. Auer: 97’. The best book, and [inaudible 00:26:04] spoke about Vietnam that I’ve ever read. And I was astonished when President Trump named him National Security Advisor, still on active duty, how could he survive writing a book that critical? I was really amazed and still impressed and recommended the book to people who think about Vietnam. Right, after the Treaty of Westphalia, I came to [inaudible 00:26:25] in the late 1970s. And in the early 80s, I was invited to Cincinnati to speak at the World Affairs Council of Cincinnati, a very distinguished group.
And the moderator about halfway through this one hour interview said, you really liked Japan, don’t you Auer? And I said, Absolutely. It’s my second favorite country. And after the program was over, the young cameraman came up to me and said, “Who’s your favorite country?” And I said, “The United States of America.” “Oh, okay.” He said. But that’s really true, I was used to be criticized during the days of the US Japan trade frictions as being soft on Japan.
And why don’t you stand up for America Auer, and I work for a guy by the name of Richard Armitage. Mike Green knows and we both work for. An Armitage once told me. He says, “The Japanese misunderstand you. They think you like Japan.” Which I do I like the Sushi, Sashimi. I like many things about Japan. But the reason I like the US Japan alliance, is because it’s good for the United States. And I think Japan has joined the Alliance for the same in a way selfish reason is good for them.
And my old professor in graduate school, his name Edwin O. Reischauer, who President Kennedy appointed as ambassador to Japan. Edwin O. Reischauer, said in his classes, “It’s hard to find nations more different than US and Japan in language, culture, history and tradition, everything else.” He said, “And yet, US and Japan have one at least one very, very common interest is that to survive and to prosper, they need to exploit the Pacific Ocean.” And that Pacific friendship between the Japan, and the United States, I think some Japanese like Americans, I don’t know if they like me. But they like some Americans, and many Americans like Japanese, but again, they’re in the Alliance because it’s good for the United States, good for America. So it’s a classic win-win situation that I think United States is very lucky to participate in.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: Good afternoon, everyone. This is my first visit to the Hudson Institute. It’s a great privilege to be here. And to be up on stage with everyone here. My comments echo many of those already made today. And there’s a lot of commonality, I think between our thinking, and then also our personal experiences. Dr. Green was mentioning his initial introduction to Japan. And it very much echoes mine. 30 years ago, when I was living in DC, I was specializing in European Union studies. And the intention was to go into the State Department or the CIA. And when I was in Europe, I had some interaction with a gentleman who was going on to a program called the JET Program back in the late 1980s.
So when I was in DC, I interviewed at the embassy here and was accepted in [inaudible 00:29:52] in 1990. The intention was to be there one year, 30 years later I’m still in Japan. And I was sent to a very small community in [healbot 00:30:04] prefecture. Along the way, I got my doctorate over there. And then I came across the Marine Corps in my writings on Okinawa, and really enjoyed the sparring, the intellectual sparring I have with the Marine Corps, and eventually was recruited to work with them twice once in Hawaii, and the other time down in Okinawa, and I finished that five years ago, and I’m back to writing full time.
My interest for the past three years has been on US Japan relationship. And when I moved to Japan, in 1990, I made a conscious decision not to emphasize the differences but to look for the similarities. And that for me was probably the biggest and most correct decision I could have made at the time. The differences are amazing, they’re stimulating and exciting. But the similarities are what kept me rooted in Okinawa and also kept me focusing on how do we continue to improve the bilateral relationship and in particular, the Alliance.
When I started looking at the history, more of the US Japan relationship, I came across a lot of similarities not only in the modern period, but in the 19th century, early 20th century as well. And so I very much agree with Dr. Greens mentioning that the 1930s, 1940s were really an aberration in a relationship, rather than what the norm was. For example, if we go back we look in the 19th century and the so called opening up of Japan. In many ways, the interaction that started with Japan was an opening up of the United States as well, not only to Asia but also to outside ideas and outside influences. So there was a reverse, influx of Japanese culture and thoughts and ideas back into our country.
Another similarity, I think, that we would see in the 1860s and 1870s. In our case after our civil war, we’re in the process of rebuilding, as well as expanding and Japan had a lot of internal conflicts including its own civil war, and then it finally set on the path of modernizing and it needed to consolidate the government. I’d also needed to clarify its international borders and so obviously Japan’s much older country, we are a much more recent country, but in many ways, much more modern at that particular time, but we’re going through many of the same trials that Japan was in that and that we were.
So I’m constantly looking for those similarities in our history as well as in our present day relationship. We talked about the war time period, there’s an expression Auer said, the fierce fighting that went on, and that’s very true. And the book that was mentioned before, that’s available for you. It’s about the Battle of Iwo Jima, as well as that longer history over the Boning islands or over Soto islands that talks about our strategy in the Asia Pacific. But I think one of the reasons behind that fierce fighting is that we began to misjudge each other, I think at some point. And we kind of looked down on one another.
We looked down on Japan, at one point. Japan looked down on the United States, and neither of us probably expected it would be such a horrific and long battle. And we put that in modern terms today. Living in Japan like I do, I sometimes get concerned about commentators looking down or talking down about China, or about North Korea, because we need to respect our potential adversaries and be aware of what they’re capable of. And I think we forgot that in the 1930s, 1940s visa vis Japan or Japan vis a vis the US.
And so we really need to be aware of the international environment and in this case, be that much more aware about the importance of the relationship that we have with Japan. The relationship as I see today, and maybe throughout the post war of US-Japan is that it’s essentially a marriage. And a marriage brings together kind of the best of both worlds to the both partners. We provide to Japan, maybe some capabilities or some things that Japan inherently may not have on its own, but similarly, Japan does that for us. In any marriage communication is extremely important, and so I hope today we continue that dialogue about the importance that we both place in one another. So thank you.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster:
Robert, thank you. Thank you. Well, thanks to all of you. I think wonderful opening comments I think of Ambassador Aikawa, the richness of the Alliance or Alliance is based in hope. From Michael Green thank you for providing us with the long historical context and the story of continuity in the friendship rather than the change in the post war period was really a reversion back to the long history of friendship. And for Dr. Auer this idea that we’re each selfish, because the Alliance works because our interests are aligned in such a profound way and we see that it’s mutually beneficial. And then Robert, I think your point about similarities and culture and experience, we tend to look at what separates us and oftentimes we miss our common humanity and how important it is to preserve that.
Well, I think it’s important to understand that how the past produces the present. Thank you, Michael for the plug on history. In that connection great American historian Carl Becker said, “Memory of past and anticipation of future should walk hand in hand, in a happy way, without one disputing privacy or over the other.” So what I’d like to do is ask each of you beginning with the ambassador again, what is it you take from the history of our alliance in particular the last 60 years? And what are the lessons? What do you think we can observe from our experience that you think will apply to the future?
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: Actually, our alliance has evolved in many ways. It’s evolved on protecting Japan as part of our US global strategic deterrence policy against the Soviet Union to one of those addressing challenges such as North Korea, North Korea WMD and any sub-programs, and continue application in the Eastern China Sea, the rapid expansion of modernization of China Chinese Arsenal’s and emerging threat in cyberspace and aerospace. So, we actually have evolved in many ways.
I will now part on the Japanese government part we did what we expected of. I mean, it hasn’t met the expectation by American friends but we did our best in adapting our alliance to the today’s world. So in that perspective that possible prospective areas for cooperation and alliances is joint cooperation to enhance joint capabilities in the multi domain areas, cyber space and electromagnetic spectrum, that’s one. And another thing is maybe we could do more in promoting a scientific and technological cooperation. That’s including quantum science, quantum computing, AI. So those are possible areas cooperation as we move forward.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you Ambassador, Michael.
Dr. Michael Green: In the time of the 1963 Treaty revision, if you would ask that question, I think most American strategic thinkers neither Hudson nor CSI says existed at the time, so they wouldn’t have been as wise. I think most strategic thinkers would have said that their main concern was neutralism, that Japan would try to sit out the Cold War come and do demonstrations. [crosstalk 00:39:48]. People were very well… That’s why Kennedy said Russia should speak directly to the Japanese people on all fronts not just much of a cultural and economic that’s why Article II of the Security Treaty is about Equal Economic Relations. I don’t worry about neutralism at all right now and I’m you probably didn’t either when you were in the White House.
I think no other country in the world is as prepared to compete against China with us as Japan. So that’s not the problem. What I worry more about is, I guess I’d say lost opportunity, because this is going to be a very hard competition. And while we’re moving in the right direction, if you look at the balance of power, the ambition of the POW, the capabilities they’re developing, we’re moving in the right direction, but we’re going to have to do things we haven’t done. We’re moving away from Japanese fears of entrapment. But we’re going to have to be much more combined. We’re going to need the kind of joint and combined command relationship we have with Korea-NATO in my view so that we are developing requirements and strategies and exercises and they’re agile and responding to crises. Right now our alliance is a little bit like for the historians like World War I sort of associated by powers.
We need a joint combined relationship if we’re going to compete. I think the will is there to do it, but we’re slow, we’re very slow. I also worry about the lost opportunity to shape the international order with Japan. I would argue no other country in the world, used to be Britain was a special relationship we countered down. But I would argue that today in the G7, the WTO, with the 5G and Internet governance, there’s no other government more closely aligned with us than Japan. But we do not have a common strategy. We haven’t in bits and pieces. And if China is a revisionist power, it’s not just revisionist against American alliances, it’s revisionist against the rules and institutions. So that’s an area where we need to do more. Those are exogenous challenges, and the question we up to it looking at the past.
The U.S.-Alliance has dealt with indigenous crises. I started into this business and worked in the Pentagon after the raid in Okinawa, and all the questions of the Okinawa problems, we had 311 there will be crises. Some of them may be of our own making. May we may fight over Okinawa in our host nation support. I’m cautiously optimistic we are aligned enough to deal with those. But we should remember that that is the pattern of history. Well, don’t hit us and don’t take it for granted.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Absolutely great. Thank you, Michael. Jim.
Dr. James E. Auer: I mentioned that the U.S.-Japan alliance works because it’s in the national interest of each country to support it. Another thing I think is extraordinarily important for an alliance to work is that both sides trust each other. And, of course, the United States was preeminent in nuclear weapons during the Cold War with the Soviet Union and Japan had none. But the U.S. promised that if Japan were attacked, that the U.S. would provide this so called nuclear umbrella for Japan. But public opinion surveys in the late 60s early 70s in Japan that Japanese didn’t really believe if the Soviets attacked Tokyo, the U.S. wouldn’t respond as compared to if it struck Los Angeles. And it was hard to prove that but in the early 1970s, the U.S. imported an aircraft carrier in Yokosuka outside of Tokyo, the USS Midway. And today the Ronald Reagan Nuclear Carriers, the fifth it’s been on base in Japan, Paul. And the US has never imported an aircraft carrier in any other foreign country other than Japan. I think that trust in the United States extremely grew in Japan with that aircraft carrier being based there.
In the 1980s, during the Cold War, my biggest dilemma, personally worrying about the Alliance was the really large expanse of the Soviet military threat, particularly the Navy man, 100 submarines the Soviets had just in their Pacific Fleet alone. And the United States Seventh Fleet at the time had 25 and a submarine aircraft to deal with that 100 Soviet submarines. The Japanese Maritime Self Defense Force our ally, had 100 anti-submarines patrol planes and up virtually every single Soviet submarine that ventured out into the Sea of Japan and beyond was attacked, was identified by an American or a Japanese anti-submarine aircraft. And just given the numbers that were more detections by Japanese than by Americans, and it really impressed on the US Navy how Japan could work as a partner. So that to me, if we can keep the trust high between Japan and the United States, the Alliance can continue in new and different scenarios is Mike just mentioned.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Great, thank you, Jim. Robert.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: Yeah. At all the universities I’ve been affiliated at, I usually teach a class on the U.S-Japan relations. And I spent 10 years at Osaka University. I’m no longer there now. But one thing that’s very interesting is that in addition to the Japanese students, I also had a lot of American students on the Olmstead Scholar Program or the FAO program, the Foreign Area Officer program from the military, and some individual American citizens. But probably the largest number of students were third country international students from around the world. And what that suggested to me was that the international community’s very interested in the Japan-U.S. Alliance probably because they want to see what they can learn from it. And maybe what Japan gets from the relationship or what the United States gets from relationship.
One comment I would like to make is that the US-Japan alliance is truly an international public good, and we really need to further promote that. And hopefully, as we see the U.S.-Japan alliance evolve, more countries who want to benefit and participate in that, if that includes expanding the Alliance, or whatnot, but, but it is very much an international public good.
It’s also a patient Alliance. Dr. Auer mentioned trust and trust is extremely important. But I think also patience has been very important over the years, and the class on the U.S-Japan relations, I would use a slide that talks about the history of the Alliance specifically. I tend not to use for example 60th anniversary, I go back further not to the pre-war per se, but to 1947 when the then Foreign Minister at the time Ashida Hitoshi, he was asked his vision for the post war security of Japan. I credit him with the post war Alliance, really, more than anyone with all due respect in that when General Eichelberger he was leaving for DC in September 1947, he asked Ashida and his staff, “So what’s Japan going to do in the future?” And the reason this came up at this particular juncture was the early peace treaty with Japan was going to be held in August 1947. MacArthur call for an early piece. The State Department moved very quickly to draft a peace treaty. Unfortunately, it was a punitive, somewhat punitive peace treaty but they worked hard to get a conference held in August.
Fortunately, the Soviet Union boycotted it and it was never held. But immediately after that Eichelberger asked Ashida about it, and until that point, Japan was looking toward the UN to guarantee its security. The Article IX the Peace, the post war constitution had just gone into effect in May that year. So Japan was essentially defenseless, and it looked to the UN but when it became apparent that the Soviet Union wasn’t going to cooperate in a peace treaty, and the same Soviet Union was a member of the permanent five of the UN Security Council, Japan realized it could not rely, unfortunately, on the international community at this point. And it specifically requested the US. So in two years time, we’re actually going to be celebrating the 75th anniversary of the Japan-U.S. Alliance.
Over the years, the development of the relationship was slow. It was evolutionary, and very slow. But gradually, particularly in the Post Cold War period, and then particularly when Dr. Greene was serving in the National Security Council, it went from an evolutionary development to a revolutionary development. The changes happened rapidly and the changes were very deep and long lasting. I look at us and from an evolutionary to a revolutionary situation and it’s only growing. The changes are becoming larger and deeper and happening faster and faster. But the patience got us to where we’re at right now.
And then another point that I think is extremely important is the support for the Alliance is extremely high. But as you mentioned, we can never take anything for granted. And we need to constantly remind both audiences of the importance of the relationship. And when I worked with the Marine Corps, I often went out of my way to explain the Japanese audiences that it was the Japanese side that originally proposed a Security Treaty and then subsequently requested that basis be in Japan. And so if your example, Japanese citizen and looks at the US-Japan alliance was imposed on Japan, then you’re going to look at the basis, our basis there as an imposition and imposed-
Dr. Michael Green: On general sovereignty.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: But in fact, it was the other way around, literally. So we can’t be complacent we need to constantly be explaining. And then on a final note, as we continue to update the relationship, I would recommend that we be as transparent as possible with our respective audiences as well as internationally. And as a historian, a diplomatic historian, that struggles with getting access to Japanese documents, because they’re not very forthcoming in their declassification process. There’s a secretive nature, about the alliance that has undermined public support in the past. And I think it’s a relationship and alliance that we could be very proud of. And I think we could be a little bit more forthcoming in transparency in that regard. Great thank you.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you very much, Robert. Well, I’m going ask one more question, nd we’ll think about what questions you have as well. We have an opportunity now to explain to the American people, the Japanese people, the world as you said, it is, I do believe to its international public good, this is a relationship and this alliance, really, what are the key aspects of the Alliance, we have to keep in mind as we look at the challenges in the future? Or if you’d like to maybe make a recommendation or two, about what might strengthen the Alliance and help the Alliance continue to adapt, as it has in the past? And Robert, your point about the flexibility of it. Kennedy again he wrote in March of 1948, “It should be our aim to have the treaty when finally negotiated as brief, as general and the least punitive as possible”.
But brief and general has given our leaders the flexibility to evolve it over all these years, and so what I’d like to do is sort of just keep in mind maybe some of the points that you’ve made already, which are excellent. AiKawa your points about the challenges we’re facing in the future, in the East China Sea, the infringement on sovereignty and on freedom of the seas and freedom of overflight. Of course, the very grave threat of North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs. You mentioned cyber and space. You mentioned electronic warfare and electromagnetic spectrum threats. And you made some recommendations about even more joint capabilities, and of course, research and development to maintain our competitive advantage is technical technologically. We’d like to hear more other thoughts you might have about the future. And then and then, Michael, I think that your points don’t miss an opportunity. You’re concerned about losing an opportunity.
And you highlighted the very significant challenges of the People’s Liberation Army, not just the vast increases in spending but the qualitative changes that they’ve made in Training and Doctrine and organization and so forth. Jim your points as well on the importance of trust and the need for us to have maybe complimentary capabilities in the Alliance. Your example of the counter-submarine capabilities any thoughts on equivalencies today? I think as we evolve the Alliance, I don’t think we should ask Japan, “Hey develop a mirror image of the United States military is capabilities.” I think we have to have the conversation about how do we ensure that our capabilities are complimentary and therefore when we operate together, or it’s our potency is magnified and that’s communicated to any potential enemies so that they don’t have the temerity to challenge us and to challenge peace and security.
So now we’ve we’ve understood it, we’ve talked about how the past produced the present. And now we have an opportunity to make a projection into the future and throw out some recommendations for all of you to consider and then to hear what’s on your minds Ambassador
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: Actually have already provided a specific recommendations in years to come. But I if you compare the preambles of between NATO treaty and the Japan-US Security Treaty, the bilateral is almost like identical, but there is one paragraphs about cultures, unity, all those things is missing in a Bilateral Security Treaty. And on that aspect, we have made a huge progress. I used to serve here 35 years ago and at that time of course the trade was high on the agenda. If the children of the embassy staff are brought there Bento box to school low level kids like came over, an wondered what this is?
Now that everybody knows what Bento box is and also that is a huge impact of Anime and other Japanese cultural things including, the very popular Lahrman phenomena. So those paths seems a little bit trivial but I guess that for us to make a treaty in a more stronger way I mean that part is also in my view that catching up with sort of a government to government cooperation also that private companies economic activities, investments.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Over cultural sectors, you mentioned earlier allies with the British somebody did here. I used to play rugby and I’ve been admiring the Japanese rugby team was just amazing to watch. The best ball handling I think international rugby and as an American rugby player I’m kind of disappointed killing at our record compared to yours. But thank you, Ambassador Michael.
Dr. Michael Green: Going back to history is our guide again. When the Security Treaty was promulgated 1960-61, huge protests as you mentioned in Tokyo, the Japanese political system, the public were exhausted. So Prime Minister Ikeda came in and replaced Tobias grandfather, Prime Minister Kishi, who had taken the… I don’t known the right rugby metaphor him taking the lines over the end of the zone. And Kishi came in and instead of the Japanese public, I’m going to double Japan’s GDP in 10 years. And he did it in five years. I mentioned that because this lines is of course also economic powers, but diplomatic power, not just military power. In 1965, the US Australia, seriously questioned whether the entirety of Southeast Asia including Indonesia was going to go communist. And there was some very real logic and fear, reasons to fear of dominoes. It wasn’t just a made up thing.
In 1965, South Korea was in a competition with North Korea that was very uncertain. Well, Ikeda doubled Japan’s national income in five years so that in 1965, Japan’s direct investment, Thailand and Malaysia brought those countries up to level where we can get out of Vietnam basically. Your book points out we’ve stayed in for all the reasons. But by the late 60s largely because of Japan’s economic success, the region was stabilized in the same for Korea.
So, and in a way this is very consistent with the kind of Mahanian or Canon view of Japan as a bulwark for the rest of Asia. Now we’re now in a time when we need to think much more practically about how we shape regional dynamics. And in 1965, Japan was very unpopular in most of Asia and Southeast Asia. Today, in every poll, you look at Japan is far more popular than any other country in the world in Southeast Asia. China and Korea are a bit different, that’s a problem. So Japan has enormous goodwill in the region, enormous economic and diplomatic and soft power.
So I think we’re now also moving into a time where we not only have two more joining combined the military and in our economies. I didn’t like leaving TPP but I thought the phase one trade agreement with Japan, the administration that Bush was really interesting because there’s a digital trade chapter that could be the beginnings of a broader trade liberalization effort will make an event that will in the historical perspective be more significant than TPP.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Right.
Dr. Michael Green: So there’s so many ways where the U.S.-Japan can shape up in. In the region, it’s about how we respond to Belt and Road, Chinese coercion. So I’m going to make a recommendation, because 15-20 years ago, if we were up for doing this, we would be making recommendations like we need to understand the importance of the Alliance, that kind of thing. And now we’re getting down to how to make it more effective. I think we need a more effective mechanism to coordinate across the inter-agency in both countries to deal with the Belt and Road, phase zero gray zone challenge from China. We all know we have to do it. Our governments are too steel piped. I think we’re at that stage now in our history. As allies we need to have the mechanics because the will and the capacity is there.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Well, I think just great points there. And the administration is doing some very good work on this right now. Keith Krach at the State Department has the lead for what the administration is calling and what is International School strategy as economic statecraft. And I think Jim, I think it’s you who said whatever the United States in Japan decide to do together they can accomplish. And that’s especially true in confronting Chinese economic aggression and unfair trade and economic practices. And as Mike you said, looking to the future data economy as well, who’s going to set the standards and ensure free fair and reciprocal trade and economic relations? Great points, and we have to make sure we don’t regard the lines to myopically as exclusively military. It’s really not, it’s much more powerful than that. And thanks for those points. Jim.
Dr. James E. Auer: Being old, please forgive me for being quick and simplistic. Both Japan and the United States are maritime nations as a result they have a very strong interest in freedom of navigation and open commerce of the seas. So, today, Japan, the United States have great interest in oceans all over the world, but particularly at this point in time in East and South China Seas. So I’ll give two recommendations. One, the Senkaku Islands, which are administered by Japan, claimed by China are extraordinarily important. Japan has to take a lead in defending them because they are Japanese territory under Japanese law. And but the United States should be willing to backup Japan. Taiwan is potentially a much more serious problem to me as the Berlin of the post Cold War world and the United States would take the lead, but to Japan needs to backup and support the United States. And I really think to Taiwan’s future as an independent country depends on the viability of the US-Japan Alliance.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thanks, Jim. And maybe just even a modifier to that. We want Taiwan to take the lead for Taiwan’s defense, with the United States support, obviously, which I think is the direction we’re headed. Great. Thank you.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: Thank you. I strongly agree with these comments as well. You have regarding the future of the Alliance, it certainly has to evolve. And it’s going to evolve. I’m confident about that. One thing that we didn’t talk about today with regard to the Alliance’s is the name of it, with having neutrality in its title. And I don’t know how many of you are familiar with how that got inserted in there when Japan’s not obligated to defend the United States or Continental United States.
That came up in the late 1950s. Ambassador MacArthur at the time was in charge of negotiating the revision. He had to deal with Congress, and in particular, the Vandenberg resolution about allies providing the same capability back to the United States if we pledge to their defense. And that’s why it wasn’t written. So in the 1951 Treaty, so MacArthur came up with a formula to give it neutrality. And that was Japan would defend basis in Japan, and therefore, there’s that element of neutrality-
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: 85 of them today, we should say still on the fact.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: And but obviously, that’s not going to be enough in a Trump presidency, or as we go forward and in the future. And because it’s not a truly neutral relationship in that regard, it actually undermines Japanese public opinion in a sense and that they feel they want to give more and provide more too. So there’s an element of pride in that as well. So when those discussions happen in the future, whether it’s constitutional revision, whether it’s more sort of pledges towards United States, whatnot, I hope that the United States is open and willing to have those discussions.
To really promote the day to day relationship. It’s absolutely essential that we have joined basing absolutely essential and one of the reasons we have so much friction in Okinawa, is that, unfortunately, our basis in Okinawa are not joined basing. On a day to day basis, we’re actually doing joint basing, whether it’s with the self defense forces, whether it’s with the Okinawa Prefectural government, the commercial sector, Okinawa, the local communities. There’s really no exclusive use spaces in Okinawa anymore, practically speaking, but on paper, it’s still essentially exclusive use bases. And we get pounded over the head on that almost every single day. So I would like to see immediate joint basing. And if we were to do that there are at least four benefits.
One is political and administrative, and particular Japanese officials, particularly if the basis are under STF Controller, Japanese control would be the ones communicating directly with the local authorities, local communities, and that would remove a lot of the political friction. It would give the Japanese side more transparency over what we’re doing on base and that may scare some people, but most our main bases in Japan proper our joint basing already. And if we’re true allies, that shouldn’t be a concern.
Second issue is that eventually I would see a reduction in some of the fiscal costs that both countries pay into the redundant basing that we have there. Third, and Dr. Green mentioned it earlier, the interoperability would grow dramatically. If you’re living, with your partner, you’re going to know so much more about your partner. And if you think about my analogy in the beginning that the US-Japan alliance is a marriage, what type of marriages is stronger, a marriage where husband and wife for or your partner are living together or where you’re dispersed and living separately? Depending on the household, I would argue that it’s most likely stronger marriage if you’re living together.
And then fourth, is the strategic impact the messaging that would have if we’re doing joint basing, in Okinawa as well or certainly throughout Japan, to certain countries, North Korea and China, that the Alliance is so strong, that we can live together and operate together. And then just on a final note, I think it’s vitally important that we get ahead of the curve on any problem that we have with our forces in Japan. And part of the work that I did in Okinawa was dealing with a lot of the different incidents that come up. I was able to get very far ahead of the curve and the arguments that I would use with the leadership was that it’s not how you respond to an incident or an accident or any other issue.
It’s what you’re doing before that time, in other words on a day to day basis where you’re building a large, essentially savings account that you could draw from if you need to, because that trust is there already. But if you have zero Yen or dollars in your account, and then something happens, you’re drawing a negative on that. And it’s so important to get ahead of it and to be, again, sincere and transparent in those relationships because if you don’t do it well, it’s going to eat away at the relationship. Even if it’s strong at the senior leadership level you still need that public support. Thank you.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thanks, Robert. Please join me in giving these great panelists a round of applause. Thank you so much. So I’d like to open it up to questions.
Audience Member: Good afternoon, gentlemen. So the central theme today is shared values between these two tremendous friends, between Japan and the United States. Well, there’s another small southeast, excuse me Northeastern state that shares the same values. And Taiwan, I would argue and to your point, sir. My question is there potential for growth in partnership and relationship between Japan and Taiwan? Using the US kind has lead to soften the constraints that the observation of the One China policy comes with because Japan takes that very seriously, I’d argue they take it more seriously than we do, the One China policy. So can Japan foster that relationship with Taiwan, kind of under the guise and under the auspices of the United States, to help in this problem set of being the Berlin of today? Thank you very much.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you. I’d like to just open it up, Jim, please. And then let’s just deal with this as a discussion. So just jump in.
Dr. James E. Auer: As we know, the US doesn’t have a formal treaty with Taiwan. We have the Taiwan Relations. And I think for Japan to move forward to bring itself into this kind of a Taiwan relationship type arrangement with Taiwan would be a very welcome and courageous on the Japanese part, but very important.
Dr. Michael Green: Taiwan, Japan, friendship and cooperation on industry and technology on tourism is incredibly positive. Unbelievably it’s very positive and has weather changes the government both countries. I used to work in the LAVP for a guy Jim Auer knew him well named Shino Moto whose dad was Foreign Minister when Japan normalized relations with China in 72. And he went to Taiwan bowed down and deeply apologized and every Lunar New Year, this guy’s son and I worked for, his office will be full of Mauti and moon pies, and that was with the KMT. Now, the Abe government hasn’t even close relationship with the Taiwan and the Greens. So it’s very, very positive, if China if the PLA permanently punctures the first island chain by either neutralizing or even worse, dominating Taiwan that’s almost existential for Japan. So it’s more than just values as geopolitics.
Dr. Michael Green: I worked in the Pentagon 20 years ago then in the NSC, and I’ve seen the US-Japan operational diplomatic discussion on Taiwan really progress. But we are in another era we were where we are underperforming, frankly. The Abe government is very friendly with the Tai government, but because this year of the effort that Tokyo is trying to make to stabilize relations with China, they’re being extremely careful with Taiwan. And I would argue too careful, because the Beijing is using almost all means of caution to isolate Taiwan. This is my own personal view, but I think Tokyo needs to step up a little bit. Not necessarily make a military commitment but in terms of international space for Taiwan. In terms of one of the things that Taiwan side would like to see is more former officers talking about strategic problems in a way that they could do without a treaty commitment. There are a couple things where I think Japan can be doing more. The baseline is very friendly, which is good for us, because that’s the island chain we care about.
Dr. James E. Auer: I think I was the last or one of the very last commanding officers of the US ship to visit Taiwan.
Dr. Michael Green: Is that why they stopped?
Dr. James E. Auer: And we could still be doing it today, except we unilaterally decided ask the Japanese and Chinese if they would be mind if we kept doing it. And Chinese would said, “Well, we would rather you not”. So we yielded to them totally unnecessary we could renew again now. It’s an active duty.
Dr. Michael Green: In 1979, Mike Oxenberg had the job I had under Jimmy Carter, had the State Department basically dictated the guidelines for how we interact with Taiwan after normalization with China. Never in the history of United States government has one flimsy little memo, around us for so long. It’s kind of amazing.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Robert and then ambassador, I’ll just ask if you have a comment.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: Yeah, exactly on these points. I agree with you that that Japan takes one China Policy way too seriously, but unfortunately, so do way and we need to step up even more. Couple years ago, I published the paper in Japan calling on Japan to adopt its own Taiwan Relations Act. I recently published a paper on an FTA (Free Trade Agreement) with Taiwan, not only between the US and Taiwan, but also Japan, and Taiwan. I know Taiwan, very much wanted to join the TPP. So hopefully that sort of window could happen in the future. Recently published a paper on the need for the US Navy to maybe start to import visits again, particularly with the closure of Hong Kong, in that regard. But what I would also like is for Japan to follow afterwards. I don’t see that happening immediately.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: As Dr. Greene mentioned, the relationship between Abe and Taiwan is very strong. His younger brother Kishi, being that vehicle, but I’m deathly afraid of what happens once Abe steps down, because there’s no one in a senior leadership position in the ruling party that will be able to carry on the relationship. In other words as party precedent, hence Prime Minister.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: A fourth area that I see strong cooperation in disaster cooperation. Four years ago I published the paper that was republished in Taipei Times, if you Google it on a set of disaster response centers along the first island chain, starting in Iwakuni, TuKonirea, Omami, Oshima, Futemachi, Moji Shima, Northern Taiwan, Southern Taiwan, Clark and then Mindanao area. And I think you know where I’m going with that. So that sort of disaster cooperation is possible between the four democracies, US, Japan, Taiwan and the Philippines. And then inviting Taiwan to participate in disaster drills in Japan would be a huge benefit. And you can theoretically get under the radar with that.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you.
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: Well, the two people ties between Japanese people and Taiwanese people are very strong economic activities, interactions are very robust. The same time we have this historical baggage, Taiwan used to be under Japanese will and we have our own very intricate framework dealing with Taiwan. They may seeing from the US viewpoint, we might be too cautious but we have to we have to interact with Taiwan under that framework. And at the same time we’ve been doing even the government level. For example in terms of expanding the international space for Taiwan, we came out and supported and participation in the WHO. If you take a look at what’s happening on this coronavirus, there is no border. So the Taiwan needs to be part of the whole international health system. So we’re making progress, but at the same time, we have to adhere to the overall framework.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Step one area of cooperation between Japan, the United States, and Taiwan will be on this sort of decoupling we’re seeing of economies based on China’s really not being regarded as a trusted economic partner based on the policies of the Chinese Communist Party, and probably supply chains disrupted now with coronavirus. So as these economies but not the couple might be the wrong word, but adjust supply chains based on these factors, the US, apan and Taiwan working together on that will be massively important.
Audience Member: On the topic of the coronavirus, Professor Green mentioned the importance of a common strategy between the United States and Japan. We can’t help but notice very different strategies or coping mechanisms adopted by the two countries with regard to the coronavirus. Could the ambassador comment on the thinking and reasoning behind the Japanese government’s approach. Thank you.
Dr. Michael Green: The question is really not maybe just the rationale behind the Japanese approach to the coronavirus. It was school closures, some of maybe some of the recent decisions.
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: We’ve been doing, what we can do to the extreme extent actually. We believe that the way we handled coronavirus is getting result. I mean if you take a look at the decreasing trend of the patients coming up this Diamond Princess Cruise is one of science. But at the same time, we just cannot be complacent about what we should do. And I say that I’m really confused. What part of our approach is concerning to you? If you be more specific.
Audience Member: I was actually contributing on the Japanese response and for a very long time decisions especially on [inaudible 01:21:58].
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: Yes, I actually our response is evolving as situation evolves. So that right now, we are restricting non entry of people who have happened to be in a two provinces in China. Yes, we haven’t reached the sort of a whole country level sort of restrictions yet. But it just depends on the situation. So we still think at this moment that it requires a response, but I will see. So that’s why that we are see… In addition, in responding to what’s happening in Korea, for example, the government sort of introduced sort of a new entry policy for those people who happen to be the last couple of weeks in two cities in Korea are not allowed to enter Japan.
So, I know that the ministry in charge per set the next couple of weeks the key. So we’ve been very, alert to what’s happening. So we at this point in time that there is a little bit of differences between the US approach and our approach, but we still as a government at this point in time, still think that we’ve been taking the current approach to address the issue.
Dr. Michael Green: I was in the White House during SARS and even influenced them and had some sympathy with the Japanese government. Because the information coming out of China was grossly insufficient to make a judgment for a long time. But the other thing it shows you is very few countries, in fact, no countries can do what the US does when it comes to China.
If you look at Chinese foreign interference in Australia, or Canada or New Zealand, the things that the Chinese are doing in those countries, blatantly doing, they’re not doing us because we’re big. We have the ability to make hard calls like closing down travel from China, because we’re big. So to me, it’s a reminder of two things. One is the consequences of the Chinese system in a global economy and a global human environment, not providing information and how important it is for US to make the hard calls because it’s hard even for the world’s third largest economy, Japan, or Korea to do that on their own.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Robert I think you had a point [inaudible 01:24:47]. Thank you.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: Yeah, related to the comments about US-Japan cooperation. Obviously, it’s increasingly necessary and if you go back to the 2015 newest guidelines, I was looking at that yesterday about if we were to maybe attach an addendum to it or updated somehow. But if you have a chance to look at it, it’s on page 18, there’s a section four, and after the letter E throwing an F in there that focuses on epidemics pandemics, and because it is increasingly a military issue too. It affects the economic vitality of the countries and in some cases, you’re going to need the military to be involved in the response. For example, with the cruise ship in Yokohama, the STF is very much involved in helping in that situation.
When I worked at Maui Four Park in Hawaii, we had started a study particularly Marine Corps Response in the Pacific to pandemic diseases. So there’s a lot of room for cooperation, but maybe as an addendum to the 2015 agreement.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thanks Robert.
Audience Member: Thank you very much for that great discussion. I like to ask about the 2.2 legit on each other from their strategic context and operational context. First one I’d like to ask what is the most feasible or practical step to upgrading to the next level of the US-Japan alliance? For instance, it has been already has been passed roughly almost five year, which means we are established to the last US-Japan Defense Cooperation Guideline in 2015. But after that the Trump administration and the Abe administration also hadn’t been used on defense strategic document in case of Japan and national defense such guideline on the US National Security Strategy 2013 and 2017 and National Defense Strategy 2018.
In that context, do you think or should we renew that the righteous US-Japan Defense Cooperation Guidelines? Or do you think that some other as needed to establish at least a new strategic document about US-Japan Alliance or in the context of the strategic competition?
The second question is from the operation perspective. I’m a little bit concerned about the differences or comparing with the NATO Alliance or US-Urk Alliance, which means that the US Japan alliance doesn’t have the single integrated operational command and control mechanism. These mechanism had a some unique character, but some contingencies happened. It’s sometimes a little bit difficult to coordinate things from the immediate response. So in that context, I’d like to ask your perspective about how do we use US alliance to upgrade it to the more strings or more practical level to your upgrading to those kinds of operational cooperation. Thank you.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you, please, anyone chip in.
Dr. Michael Green: Well, I’ve written on this. Patrick Cronin and I wrote on this 22 years ago, and I have to confess that every time I’m out of government, I say, we got to do this and then I get into government, I kind of forget to do it. If I’m ever going to come again, or if I ever advise a government on what to do, I would say this should be in the list of the top three or four things we do as allies. I think Japan has to establish a joint operational command like Australia has.
If it doesn’t do it now, it’s going to end up having to do it the middle of a crisis for sure. There’s a reason the same commander didn’t fight the fight. Same thing in Japan, the chief of defense that shot is not going to be able to be the operational commander, real crisis in the first island chain. Mendelssohn, Emo Kowano, and the leadership of the Japanese military knows that it’s more of a bureaucratic problem. And then you need to align that with the US sub unified command. My own view is it can’t be the Paycom Indo Pickup commander. There used to be thing called Joint Task Force 519, which was mainly for Taiwan. It was sink pack fleet, let it. And the response to Toma was successful in part because it was a sink paired commanded the person who had thought about how we work with Japan and American crisis.
But we don’t really have that right now. So it costs some money. There’s some bureaucratic fighting should the Navy lead it? Should the army lead it? There’s a bit of politicking. Will the civilians and the Japanese defense ministry be happy to have a joint operational command that strengthens unity of the uniform? There’s a lot of baggage but we got to do it. We got to do it. And I think a lot would flow from that.
As Robert says joint use of basis it’s chicken and egg whichever one you first the other will follow start with a joint use and this will follow. Start with this joint use of basis will follow requirements dialogue so that we’re actually integrating our defense industrial basis, and our systems and technology development more training and validating planning a lot would follow from it. And frankly, I think diplomatic and economic efforts would follow from it. You begin to have more of a combined and unified effort across a ID and Jay big. And so I know you know this. But I think that should be a priority for whoever is in charge in 2021. It’s not too hard to do.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: I think the need was very apparent when we looked at potential options for intensified maritime interdiction with North Korea. And so I think the need is apparent.
Dr. Michael Green: Absolutely.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: It’s overdue and is there other sponsors to the questions?
Dr. Robert Eldridge: I do have a concern that hasn’t come up yet. That isn’t a technical questions, comment, per se, but it’s something that is going to increasingly impact the operational side of the Alliance, and that is the population decline in Japan. And so, to me, a lot of the Alliance issues kind of fall in Japan right now whether it’s political thinking, whether it’s crisis management capabilities and infrastructure. And then the other angle being will there be enough people in Japan in the future to operate the self defense forces? So that to me, that’s a strong issue that we need to think about together.
Dr. Michael Green: Recommendation one, align command control. Recommendation two have more babies. When I was a graduate student at Syce, the storied sort of Dean of Japan hands in Asia, experts at the State Department, Marshall Green has no relation, asked to meet me. He wanted to meet the young rising Japan, so asked me. In 1987, he took me to coffee at the Cosmos club and he said, “Son, the most important thing you’re going to work on in your career is demographics.” I said really, Sir, why? And he said, “Japan and China are having too many babies.” So, demographics allow you to measure certain things in the future, but demographics are not destiny. There’s a lot of ways you command unmanned aerial vehicles on women, rural vehicles, so on and so forth. But the birth rate in Japan went up a bit it still wouldn’t know 1.3, 1.4 needs to be about 2.1 replacement rate.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Yes, at the back.
Rei Aizawa: Thank you so much for the fascinating talks today. I’m Rei Aizawa studying that Elliott School of GWU and working here at the Hudson Institute. I have a set of basically historical questions about China factor for the alliance in order to seek how the Alliance has been and will be positioned for China factor in the region. So my set of question is, how influential was China factor for the trial of redefining the Alliance after the Cold War, as you’ve said, in 1997? And as historical factors, I’m thinking now small fishery warehouses and South China Sea founded in 1990s, and Taiwan straight crisis in 1995 and 1996. And the other question, one of the question is, are there any implications for how the changes in the guideline 1997 guidelines or the talks in the process of written producing the guidelines for the current security environment in the region, from your perspectives?
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you.
Dr. Michael Green: Well, in that period in the mid 90s, Patrick Cronin was there, I was there, Paul Jr. was there, David Asher is left but he was there. And for my own book, I can never rely on my own memory. I went back and talked to these guys. I talked to Joe Nye and others and tried to reconstruct what the thought process was. And as a historian, it’s never linear. It’s incredibly messy and complex.
But I would say that the reaffirmation redefinition of the lines and the guidelines process began, not because of an exogenous shock or threat, which is usually how political scientists think of alliances, but because of the concern within the Alliance, that we were badly drifting. In particular, I think Joe and I was dealing with the Clinton administration that was very undisciplined and was attacking Japan over trade. And then we had the Okinawa rate. So a lot of it was repairing an alliance, that we didn’t know what it would be against. Exactly, but we knew it was a pillar of international stability.
And then in the midst of it, you have the Taiwan missile crisis in 95-96. And that added real purpose although we didn’t acknowledge the time, I think really drove the defense guidelines or review which Paul was right in the middle of. But I think you can add yes or no, but I think the China factor really added urgency and focus to the definition of enrolls missions and capabilities that flowed from what was originally with Joe and I in an effort to just save an alliance that was badly drifting. I don’t know, Patrick, that sort of deregulation but.
Patrick Cronin: In North Korea.
Dr. Michael Green: And in North Korea too. North Korea in 94 showed when the weakest alliances for a contingency but not the geopolitical purpose of world missions and capabilities. I think you’re right. I think there was a China factor in the Taiwan missile crisis. That was the first time since Nixon went to China 71, that we really saw evidence that engagement might not work, and China very well may use the power it was accruing to harm us. Some pretty tectonic moment.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: It goes back to the earlier point was made, don’t be complacent about the Alliance. And that of course, the environment is continuously shifting. And this is why we have to be adaptive with the Alliance and which has been also a major theme. Thank you for that question. Any other points before we ask for another?
Audience Member: This is great. It’s good to see so many bright lights up on the stage. Jim Auer is justifiably famous, I think, not only for this, but for pointing out the strengths of the combination of the United States and Japan. And that with us together, we’re unbeatable, but it’s a constant struggle to keep us together.
Robert, you talked about evolution and revolution and the capabilities of the of Japan and the Alliance. I want to ask a question in this context, because China, as it was, in 95, is pressing us now. So geopolitics is very much part of the consideration of the Alliance. And the question has to do with visibility, the visibility of those strengths as they’re developing as they’re being improved. It seems to me that internally the more visible the successes of our cooperation, the better. And that induces and produces more success in terms of building up those strengths.
I think one thing that’s particularly important is that it appears to me at least and this is part of the question that the Chinese are underestimating our strength, and that the visibility of our combined capabilities is not sufficient to deter the Chinese. Or put it this way, it could be a lot more capable in doing so. Would you talk about that visibility and your sense of the state of those strengths and how visibility can affect that equation?
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Jim would you mind taking that and then ask and pass if you’re commenting on that as well.
Dr. James E. Auer: The more visible the better. And we just got to do it. And I mean, we’re doing. We’re not doing terribly, but we could do much better at a fairly minimal cost to anything.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Ambassador the questions really about the visibility of our joint capabilities and within the Alliance and the effect on deterrence.
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: Visible or invisible I think a continuous show of robust alliances, that’s, something that we need to do to continue to enhance us in the years to come. I don’t think you’re talking about in terms of visibility, in the cyberspace or other places, there is a largely invisible cooperation going on between Japan and the US. But our overall strength of the US-Japan alliance is that’s a fundamental key in addressing challenges.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you. We have a lady here and then this gentleman in the front has been very patient. We will come to you next sir but first. [inaudible 01:40:08].
Okay, perfect. Okay, great. Thank you. Can we take can we take two questions together? Do you think? Okay, great. Thank you.
Audience Member: Thank you. My question is to Gen. McMaster and the ambassador and all the panelists regarding the Joint Alliance support between Japan and the US in the Pacific, especially in the South China Sea in all domains, including Marine, economic and air, space, AI everything. Especially I heard this from Admiral Blair, he said that we need the US need to step up a resolution to be resolved in an effective mechanism to ensure that China doesn’t take more steps to violate the international law, especially the Anchor Laws. He suggests that we need to have an effective mechanism being announced that if China does something, then we all as an international community would react sanctioning my military.
But I think Japan is also very strong with as the whether us doesn’t have that much just as they are now. So I’m asking the ambassador to see if you can ask the US to support a little more. Thank you.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Thank you for that question. And this we’ll take your question to as well and then we’ll, we’ll answer both them together. Great. Thank you.
Audience Member: I was thinking the number one allies of ours in Europe would be Britain. And what about Asia Pacific, needless to say that Japan. I was thinking, what can we do to make it better for this time, because the time is changing quite a bit as an urgent measure. So my question is, was there any point… We had a desire to revise the security National Security Treaty between US and Japan?
Then Japan can do this and that for America for the treaty sake. Is there any point that we had that? Because otherwise, if we don’t revise it, it’ll stay the same. And I don’t know if that’s good enough for Asia Pacific. I’m referring to China. I’m talking about the balance of power in the Asia Pacific. So that’s my question.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Great. Thank you. Ambassador what I’d like to do is let’s take the Vietnam question first, about the Alliance, and particularly the implications of US and Japan, working with ASEAN countries to deter Chinese aggression in the South China Sea.
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: The ASEAN is a very good friend, both for Japan and United States and we’ve been working with the ASEAN countries to sort of maintain the rule of law, whether in South China Sea or East China Sea and different dimensions. One is our men women in uniform and America men and women in uniform are joined through exercising in together, with in some cases together with India or together with the Philippines have conducted joint exercises both in the China South Sea and East China Sea.
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: At the same time is diplomatically speaking, Japan is the first one to make opposition very clear that the uncrossed jurisdiction, that the Lula law should be strict adhered, and I every country needs to adhere to the judgment by International Arbitration Courts, Maritime Courts. And every country as China or any other. So we’re doing just that, and I welcome the possible US-ASEAN Summit in March, and I hope that’ll be another catalyst in enhancing their bilateral relations. And in our part we’ve been putting in enormous resources diplomatic or otherwise into enhancing our relations with us and so there’s there’s no question about it.
Dr. Michael Green: I’ll just say that I think we have to regard the threat from the Chinese Communist Party’s aggression in the region. In this campaign we have to think of it as co-option, coercion and concealment, to try to co-opt countries with sweet economic deals, with the new vanguard of the Chinese Communist Party as a party official or a Chinese bank official with duffel bags full of cash. And so it’s important for us to work together economically against this campaign of corruption and coercion. And I said something very positive in the countries in the region of recognizing the danger of this sort of predatory behavior to debt trap behavior and so forth.
And Vietnam economy’s booming, in large measure as a result of more and more companies not seeing China or the Chinese Communist Party, especially really, as a trusted partner and moving a lot of manufacturing other businesses into Vietnam. I think the collective will of ASEAN countries is very important. China’s able to play them off against each other. Some you can’t rely on at all, Cambodia, for example. But others need to maybe be strengthened a little bit and encouraged, I mean Philippines. And of course we have a treaty ally with Thailand as well. There’s tremendous potential with the ASEAN.
United States is prioritizing our relationship with ASEAN not just militarily, but in security wise, but economics, because this is really the China’s plan is to combine all these measures in this campaign of cooperation, coercion, and really trying to portray its predatory capabilities as a just normal business. And what they do is over for both questions now on ASEAN and South China Sea, but also the Security Treaty revision potentials potential for that, and over to you.
Dr. James E. Auer: I was just going to speak to the gentleman who asked if Japan could do more. And I mentioned Japan did a lot during the Cold War, but we were always full of suggestions of even more things they could do. And but the answer was usually when the budget is tight is too politically sensitive. And I assume that same is still existing today, vis a vis China. But what I always would say to my Japanese friends, if together in Japan and the US do too much, it’s not dangerous, it’s very strong, because our deterrence go stronger. But if we do too little, we possibly suggest weakness that the other side can advantage. So the US is pretty good at asking to do more and Japan is again done a lot, but has been reluctant sometimes to go too fast.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Okay. I which to alert everybody five minutes left. So this if you could address the last two questions, and give your whatever you’d like to leave our audience with. Take Robert.
Dr. James E. Auer: Good. And following up on Dr. Auer comment for Mr. Nakai, one example of things that the US previously looked at particularly during the treaty revision period in the late 1950s was expanding the territorial delineation of the treaty area to include the western Pacific rather than the Far East. So it had a larger territorial nuance to it, if possible, but Japan rejected it. Unfortunately, Japan also rejected defending Okinawa, so a chance in 1962 return Okinawa was lost, not because of stubborn Joint Chiefs of Staff, but because of the factional infighting in the ruling party and with the opposition parties in Japan.
About 10 or 15 years ago and Dr. Greene could confirm this. There were kind of bilateral, informal, maybe track to track one and a half discussions on Japan, perhaps defending Guam. And further out there, particularly, as we’re looking to relocate some of the Marine Corps, from Okinawa to Guam, it made perfect sense for Japan to at least include the western Pacific under the treaty. And then that relates the question from the young lady regarding Vietnam as well.
Another area that we didn’t really talk about too much today is maybe the differences between Japan and the US views of the region is information sharing. Japan has contacts both open source as well as more intimate that the US doesn’t have. And the greater information sharing and intelligence sharing the two countries pursue is extremely important. And that can be done without revising the treaty.
Dr. Michael Green: So in 1982, I think when Jim Auer was in the Pentagon, with Rich Armitage, they convinced together with my old boss, Shinai Sensei and the LDP, the Japanese Foreign Minister, to commit to defending Japan sea lanes up to 1000 nautical miles. I’m not sure Japan could do that today, given what the PLO is doing. If Japan in my view is we don’t need a mutual Security Treaty. We don’t need to revise a treaty. If Japan’s got the capability to defend the first island chain with us, we’re safer. I’d much rather have that that commitment to defend New York. So that’s the mission. That’s what I think we really need to focus on. And when you mentioned NATO, I thought you’re going talk about Europe. So if I could leave one point, probably because I’m going to France tomorrow.
And my parents both served in Italy and all my siblings learned Italian and I learned Japanese. And they studied in Middlebury, and at four o’clock, they were finished, and we’re drinking wine. And I was out learning Chinese characters till 10 p.m. I’ve suffered as an Asia hand, but now I’m getting invited to Europe, you too Patrick every month, because the Europeans are waking up to this China challenge and they want to align certain governments in France. For example, their strategies more with us.
And so the thought I would just leave you with is this is a global challenge, the China challenge and we need to align better as an alliance with NATO, and with and with key members of NATO who have the guts to take this one on. France would be in that category. My favorite place in the State Department which is otherwise a boring place is the Secretary of State’s Conference Room on the seventh floor where they still have the table from the Williamsburg summit. And when Condi Rice used to call me over for meetings, I’d rush and sit in caucus. They still have the brass nameplates. You’ve probably been there. I always sit Nakasone seat, I like it.
But there’d be Thatcher and Helmut Kohl and, I was saying this when we were all having lunch, but we won the Cold War because the US-Japan Alliance strengthened defense of the island chain, but also because Ronald Reagan connected US-Japan Alliance and NATO in Europe in the G7. And we could be doing as a country a lot better job on the G7. And we could be doing a lot more I think to make that connection stronger.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: I’m sorry. Yes, please. Okay, and then what we’ll do is we’ll just answer this question and then sum up perfect.
Audience Member: I want to thank Ambassador Ikaiwa for hosting the JUMP program, The Japanese-US Military Program Friday night. It’s a bond between former people, people who’ve served in Japan. But we’ve hosted two ISMO officers from Taiwan, Admiral Yang, and now Gen. Ma and also JSTF, Gen. from Japan Tashi Imani. But the question goes to Okinawa. There was a report last week in the Ashai Shimbun about the land Phil not working right at the future of the movement and the base.
Dr. James E. Auer: For the benefit of the audience here I’m not a fan of the proposal to relocate the functions of an extremely useful base 95 meters above sea level with a 27140 meter strategic runway to a County Airport in Anoko. It was known from the beginning by people who are familiar with the area and familiar with the dynamics that they weren’t going to meet the timetable. They weren’t going to meet the budget, and that it wouldn’t maintain the capabilities that currently exist. So kind of any reporting that that comes out of Okinawa now I’m not terribly surprised about it. If you’re referring to the announcement by the Japanese government, that it’s probably going to take another 10X number of years.
That was known by people following the issue. So, one of the challenges is the current challenge among the 100 and 11 other challenges is the construction method and the actual construction site. It’s not seen as a very firm foundation, unfortunately, that was known from the 1930s. And they went ahead with that decision. So if they continue with it’s going to be much more costly and take much longer. But a lot of people when out from that situation, the United States gets it gets to use continued use for 10 months indefinitely. And a lot of the protesters get a huge amount of money as part of the protesting process, too. So it’s a win-win for everybody that the longer it takes. And I’m being a little bit sarcastic with that situation.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: So I’m just going offer up any last comments. Maybe speed round a minute or less. We’ll start with Jim and then we’ll come straight down the line.
Dr. James E. Auer: If the US-Japan line is strong, right?
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Right.
Dr. Michael Green: Amen and on Okinawa, we need more runways, not fewer runways, we need them because of natural disasters. We need runways that are well above sea level. We’ve learned we need them because of ballistic missiles whether or not we go ahead with gamma we should be really thinking creatively about everywhere we can find runways in the first island chain. Philippines just made it harder. But we need more runways.
Ambassador Kazutoshi Aikawa: I’m echoing what to Dr. Auer said.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Robert any last word.
Dr. Robert Eldridge: No, but that’ll get you in trouble and maybe echo my comments.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: I think he meant Aikawa.
Lt. Gen. H.R. McMaster: Somebody who’s had an immensely positive influence on the US-Japan alliance has not been up on stage and that’s Patrick Cronin, from whom I’ve learned a great deal about this alliance and about Japan. And the richness and importance of this alliance to peace and prosperity as a privilege to be here at Hudson, and to have a small role in maintaining and strengthening this wonderful Alliance. I think our panelists today, Ambassador Aikawa, what a privilege it was to be with you, and Michael Geen, Jim Auer, Robert Eldridge. I don’t think we could have had a better panel on this occasion of the 60th anniversary. So please join me in a round of applause for them. Thank you.
Patrick Cronin: Thank you all. It has been a great job, thanks.