Past Events

US-ROK-Japan Extended Deterrence Trilateral

Hosted by: Pacific Forum CSIS and the Asan Institute for Policy Studies

Date: September 2-3, 2013

Place: Conference Room (2F), The Asan Institute for Policy Studies


Monday, September 2

Session I: Strategic Perspectives and Extended Deterrence 

The three countries compare and contrast perspectives on regional security threats and challenges, with special attention to the role of US extended deterrence. What distinguishes these threats from other security challenges? What are the important trends or factors that influence the salience of these threats? What is the role of deterrence by denial and deterrence by punishment for addressing these threats and what role does the US nuclear arsenal play versus other non-nuclear assets like missile defense, conventional forces, etc.?  How should we apportion our range of resources to these specific challenges? How should we discuss or frame these challenges to ensure they get the attention they deserve without inflating them or provoking other countries?

Session 2: Views of China and the balance of power in the Asia Pacific

How does each country see the balance of power in Asia? Is it changing? If so, how and why (i.e, what is driving that shift)? What is the impact of that shift? How does a shift impact US extended deterrence commitments and the role of nuclear weapons? How does each country evaluate PLA military modernization efforts (e.g. nuclear forces, submarines, etc.)?

Session 3: Views of North Korea 

How does each country characterize the North Korean threat? What is the role of deterrence? What specific scenarios is each country trying to deter and what are they doing? What does each government expect the other two to contribute to deterrence and what is expected when deterrence fails? At what level does North Korea become a threat that engages the US extended deterrent and at what point should the US nuclear arsenal come into play?

Session 4: Changes in national defense postures and status of reforms

What is the status of defense postures and programs, especially given the new governments in Tokyo and Seoul? What is each government planning to do? How will those changes impact the extended deterrent? To what degree does the extended deterrent shape Japanese and ROK plans? What is the status of the rebalance and the Obama administration’s plans to try to continue to reduce nuclear weapons on the extended deterrent? How can these policies best be used to strengthen extended deterrence?

Tuesday, September 3

Session 5: Reassurance and extended deterrence

How can the US reassure the ROK and Japan regarding the viability and credibility of its extended deterrent? What does each government want Washington to do? Is there anything in particular that would be troubling to these governments? What should the US NOT do? Are there nonmilitary ways the US can reassure its allies of the durability of its extended deterrent and its commitment to their defense?

Session 6: Opportunities for trilateral relations that increase extended deterrence

What can the three governments do together to shore up extended deterrence in East Asia?  When can they cooperate in the region in a meaningful way? Can each government see ways that the other two countries can cooperate to increase extended deterrence? Are there things they should not do?

Session 7: Next steps

What should the three countries do to strengthen regional stability and deterrence?  How can this dialogue contribute to that process?