PacNet #33 – A Win-Win Alliance for Asia

In his article “Keeping the alliance alive” (The Japan Times; 7/27/98), former Prime Minister Morihiro Hosokawa takes exception, both to my July 11 critique of his July 6 article in The Japan Times and to my review of his piece in the July-August edition of Foreign Affairs, which appeared in the Sankei Shimbun July 10. […]

PacNet #31 – Indonesia’s Muslim Divide: Past and Present

Surveys of Indonesia politics usually mention that there are two basic camps of pious Muslims, the traditionalists and the modernists, and that their rivalry is an essential feature in the history of the nation. As Indonesia prepares to hold its freest parliamentary elections in over 40 years (currently scheduled for mid-1999), concerned outsiders must pursue […]

PacNet #30 – Cambodia Not Ready For Elections

A few weeks ago, almost a year to the day after he deposed First Prime Minister Norodom Ranariddh in a violent coup d’etat, Cambodian strongman (and Second Prime Minister) Hun Sen said that he did not plan to actively participate in the upcoming election campaign boasting that none of the other candidates can beat him. […]

PacNet #29 – The July 12 Elections: A New Page in Japanese Democracy?

Conventional wisdom predicted that the Liberal Democratic Party would reign supreme in Japan’s July 12 Upper House elections. Public opinion polls taken a week before the election gave little cause for doubt: major newspapers projected that an indifferent electorate would allow the LDP to at least preserve its position, and the LDP boastfully predicted that […]

PacNet #27 – Clinton Visit to China: What Wasn’t Discussed

President Clinton’s visit to China, by virtually all accounts, has been a huge diplomatic success. Even seasoned China-watchers (and seasoned China bashers) were impressed by the degree of openess and candor of the dialogue and by Beijing’s willingness to broadcast Clinton’s less than flattering remarks to a broad Chinese domestic audience.

PacNet #26 – Don’t Bypass Japan

President Clinton is presently in China for his second summit meeting within a year with Chinese President Jiang Zemin. The summit has been mired in controversy since before it began but, perhaps the most egregious foreign policy error President Clinton made was in not stopping in Japan on his way to or from China.

PacNet #25 – Engaging China: The Clinton Visit

President Clinton leaves for China on 24 June. Because this is the first Presidential trip to China this decade there has been the predictable surge in editorials and features on China in the mainstream press and a dramatic increase in the number of conferences, meetings and roundtables at all the major think-tanks. Under any circumstances […]

PacNet #24 – A Plan to Get Indonesia Back on Its Feet

Indonesia is fortunate to have ended the 32-year rule of President Suharto without much bloodshed. The succession could have degenerated into civil war or anarchy. Although the process of political change is far from over, the worst seems past. This is due to the restraint shown by the conflicting forces, especially Mr. Suharto himself, the […]