August 3, 2016 - In This Issue:
Watch: Adm. Dennis Blair testifies on South China Sea issues at Senate committee hearing

Sasakawa USA Chairman and CEO Adm. Dennis Blair testified Wednesday, July 13 before the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific, and International Cyber Security. The hearing addressed "U.S. Policy Options in the South China Sea" following the July 12 release of a UN Tribunal decision on maritime disputes between the Philippines and China.

The hearing was livestreamed from the Committee's homepage.

Op-ed: Constitutional revision in Japan and why change is hard to come by  

Critics argue Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe might use his newfound advantage following the Upper House elections to loosen Article 9 of Japan's constitution---- the so-called peace clause---- which bans the country from waging war and has been the cornerstone of Tokyo's foreign policy for decades.

Yet the road to constitutional change is not as straight or certain as many Japan watchers have suggested, writes Sasakawa USA's Dr. Jeffrey Hornung in this op-ed published in Foreign Affairs.
In the News: Tokyo elects first woman governor by landslide over Abe pick  
Former environment minister Yuriko Koike will have the spotlight more than any previous woman in Japanese politics after Tokyo elected her on Sunday as the prefecture's first female governor, Sasakawa USA's Tobias Harris said in a Bloomberg article reporting on the election.

But will her election into such a prominent political office help women advance into national leadership roles?
Chairman's Message: After Upper House elections, Abe administration should prioritize economy, TPP, China relations    

During his three-and-a-half years in office, Prime Minister Abe has often spent down his political capital on difficult initiatives that he believes are the right thing to do, writes Sasakawa USA Chairman and CEO Admiral Dennis Blair in this edition of the Chairman's Message..

Many of these initiatives have been important for the U.S.-Japan relationship, and there is no shortage of difficult immediate issues that will require expenditure of political capital for Japan and the United States, he writes.

Op-Ed: Japan-China relations at a crossroads

Following their assertive actions in the East China Sea in recent years, Chinese foreign policymakers now find themselves under considerable pressure, writes Sasakawa USA's Hiroko Maeda in this op-ed published in The Diplomat.

China's expansionist strategies in the East and South China Seas have earned Beijing widespread criticism from the international community. Maeda explains how these emerging challenges have prompted the current debate in Japan about how best to respond to China.

Japan Political Pulse: Abe's support still rests on lack of alternatives; public remains ambivalent about policies

Japan's House of Councillors  elections are over, resulting in an impressive victory for the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP)-Komeito coalition, which now has 147 seats in the 242 seat HOC, writes Sasakawa USA's Tobias Harris in his latest analysis on Japan Political Pulse.

However, despite headlines that proclaimed Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's government won a landslide victory on July 10, opinion polls conducted after the elections suggest that the vote did not fundamentally alter public opinion regarding the Abe administration and its policies. 

Senior Fellow Daniel Bob comments on trilateral cooperation at U.S.-Korea seminar

Sasakawa USA's Director of Programs and Senior Fellow Daniel Bob recently gave a presentation on "A New Era for Trilateral Cooperation" between the U.S., Japan, and Korea at the annual  Opinion Leaders' Seminar jointly hosted by the Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI) and the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy's (KIEP).

In its 15th year, the seminar explored a variety of topics critical to U.S.-Korea economic, political, and security ties with top policy experts from both Korea and the U.S. in a confidential exchange of views. 

We're hiring: Seeking an Education Program Officer and fall interns

Sasakawa USA currently is seeking a full-time Program Officer to lead all programmatic aspects of its Education Programs, and also is accepting applications for paid internships for Fall 2016. Click through to view the full job descriptions, deadlines, and details on how to apply.

Still accepting applications for the JET Alumni Association Mini-Grant Program

Sasakawa USA is pleased to partner with the US Japan Exchange & Teaching Programme Alumni Association (JETAA) to offer a mini-grant program. Through this initiative, funded by Sasakawa USA and administered by USJETAA, small grants will be awarded to JETAA chapters and subchapters in the U.S. to fund innovative activities that engage JET alumni in their communities and promote understanding and friendship between the U.S. and Japan. Apply by August 15.

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