Note on US Troop Restructuring and Japan
James Schoff (Sr. Staff Member, The Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis, Cambridge, MA)
This article originally appeared in the "Japan-U.S. Discussion Forum" (http://lists.nbr.org/japanforum) on June 5, 2003; posted here with the author's permission.
As a side note to John de Boer's posting on the US-Japan alliance (http://www.glocom.org/debates/20030605_deBoer_com/): a perfect opportunity for Japan to address the question of how it responds, to recent regional/global strategic shifts and US security policy changes, is in the revision of its National Defense Program Outline (NDPO) planned for the end of this fiscal year (according to news reports). I think the program was last updated in the mid-1990's. Important bilateral consultations have and will take place regarding the document, but the most important discussions will happen inside Japan. The revised Outline, and the process of putting it together, should shed light on some of the questions raised in our discussion. The brighter the light, the better.