June 24, 2006


Koizumi's foreign policy: U.S. always comes first (REIJI YOSHIDA, 6/25/06, Japan Times)

As far as diplomacy is concerned, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi is arguably the most controversial leader Japan has seen in recent years -- a man both censured and praised since taking office in April 2001.

His diplomatic stance has been a nightmare for those hoping for closer ties between Japan and its Asian neighbors, but to conservatives he has been a quick, decisive leader advocating stronger military ties with the United States.

"(Koizumi) likes to make things clear, like black or white," observed Tomohito Shinoda, an associate professor of politics at International University of Japan in Niigata Prefecture.

Shinoda said Koizumi is a unique prime minister in that he has exercised strong diplomatic initiatives in a country that traditionally prefers consensus-building and control by bureaucrats.

His main pillar has been full commitment to the security alliance with the United States. He has said he believes the better Japan's ties with Washington, the greater the likelihood good relationships can be forged with other nations.

If your relationship with the Anglosphere is strong enough does it really matter what lesser nations think of you?

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 24, 2006 8:52 PM

Smart boy.

Posted by: erp at June 25, 2006 7:20 AM