August 6, 2009
The 15th annual Japan-U.S. Security Seminar convened amidst a ringing of alarm bells. A global economic crisis challenged the capability of states to sustain growth and prosperity and the philosophy that has dominated the postwar economic order. The prospect of a North Korean “satellite test” threatened regional stability and raised questions about the ability of global institutions, the United Nations in particular, to check misbehavior. The possibility of the first non-Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) government taking power in Tokyo by means of the ballot box raised questions about Japan’s future outlook and orientation. All of this provides the backdrop for the 50th anniversary of the Japan-U.S. alliance, which will occur next year.