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PacNet #12A – Japan’s New “Values-Oriented Diplomacy”: A Double-Edged Sword

Japan ’s recent decision to develop a foreign policy based on support for universal values is a step forward in the development of a more coherent, strategic vision to pursue its national interests. The new policy is likely to make coordination with the United States easier and allow Tokyo to focus its efforts to compete with China for influence in areas such as Southeast Asia. Japan should, however, learn from U.S. experience: asserting its values internationally will invite other countries to put Tokyo ’s behavior under the looking glass as well.