Professor Easley’s analysis of Japanese security policy was published in the Australian Journal of International Affairs. Over the weekend, an Upper House election in Japan delivered a two-thirds supermajority to politicians who support revising the pacifist Article 9 of the Japanese constitution. A more proactive and less pacifist Japan is bound to stoke concerns in Asia over Japanese “remilitarization,” even as it is welcomed by Japanese conservatives advocating greater defense “autonomy,” as well as by U.S. policymakers calling for Japan to be a more “active ally.” Many books and articles have been written about the “normalization” of Japanese security policy, but this is the most up-to-date study that is both theoretically informed and historically detailed in evaluating competing explanations about Japan’s defense posture trajectory.
* Leif-Eric Easley, “How Proactive? How Pacifist? Charting Japan’s Evolving Defense Posture,” Australian Journal of International Affairs, July 2016, http://www.tandfonline.