Sasakawa USA Newsletter l February 28, 2020
Included in this issue of the newsletter:

  • FMC Congressional Study Group on Japan Visits Japan
  • Pacific Trident Tabletop Exercise (TTX)
  • JUMP 5th Annual Dinner
  • JETAA Mini-Grant Program in Boston
  • Adm. Kawano, Mr. Masanori Nishi, and Mr. Nobukatsu Kanehara visit Washington D.C.
  • The U.S. and Japan After the INF Treaty
Upcoming Events
  • Next Installment in The Alliance Working in America Series to be Held in Utah
  • JUMP Colorado Inaugural Event in Colorado Springs
  • Shanti Shoji Joins Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA as Director of Programs
FMC Congressional Study Group on Japan Visits Japan
The Congressional Study Group on Japan, a non-partisan, non-advocacy legislative exchange program of FMC (Association of Former Members of the Congress) visited Japan from February 15 to 22. The delegation led by Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO) and Rep. Larry Bucshon (R-IN) discussed critical international issues including U.S.-Japan relations, China, North Korea, and the Tokyo Olympics/Paralympic games. Prime Minister Abe generously spent 45 minutes exchanging views with the delegation despite his tight schedule. The delegation also met with Defense Minister Taro Kono and Governor of Tokyo Ms. Yuriko Koike, among other policy makers. Sasakawa USA partners with FMC on the Congressional Study Group on Japan. 

Photo (Cabinet Office): Front row from right: Mr. Yohei Sasakawa (Honorary Chairman, Sasakawa Peace Foundation), Rep. Linda Sanchez (D-CA), Rep. Larry Bucshon (R-IN), Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Rep. Diana DeGette (D-CO), Rep. Greg Walden (D-OR). Deputy Chief Cabinet Secretary Akihiro Nishimura. Second row from right: Rep. Jim Baird (R-IN), Rep. Tom Reed (R-NY), Rep. Chellie Pingree (D-ME), Rep. Mike Quigley (D-IL), and Rep. Andy Barr (R-KY).  
Pacific Trident Tabletop Exercise (TTX)
Sasakawa USA conducted its third Pacific Trident Tabletop Exercise (TTX) on February 4, 5, and 6 at the Lockheed Martin Center for Innovation, also known as the Lighthouse, in Suffolk, Virginia. Pacific Trident TTXs bring together policy experts from Japan, the United States, and other countries to examine pressing security issues in East Asia through simulated real-world contingencies. Participants work in teams to address a variety of scenarios. The exercises aim to strengthen U.S.-Japan—and broader multilateral—cooperation in the face of current and future challenges and threats. 

This year, the TTX included teams of former officials from the U.S., Japan, Republic of Korea, and Taiwan. Additionally, subject matter experts simulated teams from China, Russia, and North Korea. In all, nearly 50 players participated in this event, including high-level, recently retired officials from Japan’s Ministry of Defense, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Self-Defense Forces.

In 2018, Sasakawa USA conducted two highly successful exercises: Pacific Trident I in Tokyo explored bilateral and trilateral (U.S.-Japan-ROK) responses to North Korean provocations in the Sea of Japan/East Sea; Pacific Trident II in Suffolk, VA tested bilateral and trilateral responses to DPRK sanctions evasion and instability. 

The 2020 TTX will culminate in a written report with policy recommendations to the governments of Japan and the United States. Following publication of the report, senior TTX participants will brief U.S. national security and military officials in Washington, D.C.
JUMP 5th Annual Dinner
The Japan-U.S. Military Program (JUMP) held its 5th Annual Dinner at the Army and Navy Club in Washington, D.C. on Friday, February 21. Nearly 120 attendees enjoyed an opportunity to reminisce on their service in Japan and catch up with old friends. 

The Chairman and President of Sasakawa USA, Dr. Satohiro Akimoto, made brief remarks and introduced Amb. Kazutoshi Aikawa, Japan’s Chargé d'affaires, ad interim, in Washington DC, who gave a toast. After the guests enjoyed a wonderful dinner, Distinguished Senior Fellow (Non-Resident) Admiral Dennis Blair (Ret.), conducted a fireside chat with keynote guest Admiral Patrick Walsh (Ret.), who recounted his experience leading Operation Tomodachi. Additionally, Admirals Walsh and Blair discussed the changing nature of the U.S.-Japan security relationship, and the challenge posed by China in areas such as cyber and technology.

Attendees at this year’s dinner included two former commanders of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, former commanders of Pacific Air Forces and Pacific Fleet, a former commander of the Third Marine Expeditionary Force in Okinawa, a former commander of the U.S. Seventh Fleet, homeported in Yokosuka, and two former commanders of U.S. Forces Japan at Yokota. Current Pentagon and State Department officials also attended, as well as a large contingent from the Embassy of Japan.
JETAA Mini-Grant Program in Boston
On February 22, Sasakawa USA was proud to sponsor the event, One Bite at a Time: Building Bridges with Japanese Culinary Arts , co-hosted by the New England JET Alumni Association (NEJETAA) and the Japan Society of Boston (JSB) at the CIC in Boston, MA. The event was sponsored through the Sasakawa USA/USJETAA mini-grant program for JETAA chapters in the United States. The educational workshop highlighted food as a universal language to build cultural understanding between the United States and Japan.

The first half of the workshop featured Debra Samuels, a cookbook author and former contributor to the The Boston Globe. She now leads the program content and curriculum development at Table For Two USA (TFT USA), a non-profit organization that promotes their original program, Wa-Shokuiku: Learn. Cook. Eat Japanese! . During her segment, Debra gave a presentation on Japanese cuisine and its historical and cultural influence on U.S.-Japan relations and then led an interactive workshop teaching attendees how to prepare and eat a healthy, traditional Japanese bento lunch. Attendees learned Japanese concepts such as mottainai  (don't waste) and me de taberu (to eat with your eyes) to remember the importance of not wasting food and that food should be enjoyed visually in addition to its taste and smell.

The second half of the workshop featured Alexis Agliano Sanborn (Shimane, 2009-2011), a JET alumni and former member of the TFT USA team. Alexis presented the Boston premiere of her new documentary, Nourishing Japan , about kyushoku (Japanese school lunch) and shokuiku (food education in Japan). In the film, Hiroko Ikarashi, Nutrition Instructor in Yamagata Prefecture explained, "Food education is more than just keeping us alive. It’s the root of a healthy life. In 2005, the Food Education Law was passed. Since then, nutritionists across Japan teach elementary students about eating well.” Attendees also had the opportunity to participate in a brief Q&A with Alexis that touched upon the making of the documentary, the politics of food, and some differences between Japanese and American school cafeterias. Approximately 55 people attended this event including JSB members, alumni of the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program and their families. 
Adm. Katsutoshi Kawano, Mr. Masanori Nishi, and Mr. Nobukatsu Kanehara Visit Washington D.C.
Admiral Katsutoshi Kawano, the 5 th Chief of Staff, Joint Staff, Mr. Masanori Nishi, the Special Advisor to the Ministry of Defense, and Mr. Nobukatsu Kanehara, former Assistant Chief Cabinet Secretary and Deputy Secretary-General of National Security Secretariat visited Washington early this month with Sasakawa USA’s support. They exchanged views on geopolitical issues in Asia, such as China and North Korea, with policy experts, law makers, think tankers, and defense business representatives in Washington. They also received updates on the U.S. presidential election from political observers. Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA), Chairman, Committee on Veteran’s Affairs, invited the three gentlemen to his office to discuss various policy issues regarding Asia including the U.S. Japan Security Alliance.

Photo: From the right: Mr. Nobukatsu Kanehara, former Assistant Chief Cabinet Secretary and Deputy Secretary-General of National Security Secretariat; Adm. Katsutoshi Kawano, 5 th Chief of Staff, Joint Staff; Mr. Masanori Nishi, the Special Advisor to the Ministry of Defense; Rep. Mark Takano (D-CA); Mr. Satohiro Akimoto, Chairman of the Board and President of Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA.
The U.S. and Japan After the INF Treaty
Sasakawa USA alumnus Ankit Panda, Adjunct Senior Fellow, Federation of American Scientists, traveled to Japan in November 2019 as part of the Sasakawa USA In-Depth Alumni Research/Reporting Trip . In new commentary published on Sasakawa USA’s website, Panda explores the ramifications in East Asia of the United States’ decision to withdraw from the Intermediate-Range Nuclear Forces (INF) Treaty and how the U.S.-Japan alliance might best position itself for the post-INF era.

Next Installment in The Alliance Working in America Series to be Held in Utah
The next installment of The Alliance Working in America (TAWA) series will be held in Utah March 10 and 11.

On March 10 in Salt Lake City, UT, a panel of experts from Washington, D.C. and a representative of Japanese business in Utah will assess the role of the U.S.-Japan security alliance, depth and breadth of U.S.-Japan relations, and the impact of Japanese business investments in Utah. Featured panelists will include Amb. James P. Zumwalt , Distinguished Senior Fellow (Non-Resident), Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA; Mr. Yasuhiro Uozumi, Executive Director, Keidanren USA; and Mr. Lee Carter, CEO and President, Rakuten Bank America. The event will be co-sponsored with the Utah Council for Citizen Diplomacy and World Trade Center Utah.

The event on March 11 at Utah Valley University (UVU) in Orem, UT will focus on workforce development, convening leaders from Japanese and Utahn business, plus state and local authorities. The event aims to identify the interests of all parties, the requisite workforce in Utah to support Japanese investment, and the opportunities Utah can bring to the table. Additionally, it will highlight what challenges Utah faces to recruit and train the necessary workforce and how Japanese and U.S. companies, state and local authorities, and educational institutions can work together to address them. Panelists will include Mr. Osamu Taki, Chief Executive Director, Japan External Trade Organization; Mr. Benjamin Hart, Deputy Director, Governor's Office of Economic Development; and Ms. Bryce Hunt, Customer Success Manager, Podium. The event will be co-sponsored by UVU’s Office of Global Engagement, the Consulate General of Japan in Denver, and the World Trade Center Utah.

For additional information, please visit the TAWA Utah page on our website.
JUMP Colorado Inaugural Event in Colorado Springs
The Japan-US Military Program (JUMP) will hold its inaugural event in Colorado Springs, Colorado , on Saturday, February 29, 2020, at the Falcon Club on the campus of the United States Air Force Academy. This event is co-sponsored by the Japan-America Society of Southern Colorado.

The event will feature keynote remarks by the former Commander of U.S. Forces, Japan, Lt Gen John Dolan (Ret.) and Japan’s Consul General in Denver, Ms. Midori Takeuchi. Their remarks will be followed by a catered reception, and traditional Japanese musical performances.

JUMP seeks to bring together those American service members, government employees, and their families who have served in Japan and would like to remain in contact with Japanese culture, language, and people, as well as stay informed about the U.S.-Japan Alliance. The program is a collaboration between Sasakawa USA, the National Association of Japan America Societies (NAJAS), and the Embassy of Japan in Washington, D.C.

Event Registration: Please send an email to . JASSC will confirm your registration with a reply email.
Shanti Shoji Joins Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA as Director of Programs
In February Shanti Shoji joined Sasakawa USA as the new Director of Programs. She brings over 16 years of experience working in U.S.-Japan relations, specifically in the areas of public diplomacy and international exchange. In 2011 she co-founded Kizuna Across Cultures, a nonprofit that has connected over 10,000 students from the U.S. and Japan through a virtual exchange program. In addition, she spent two years in Kagawa Prefecture as an Assistant Language Teacher on the JET Program, teaching at several junior high schools. Shanti’s extensive experience in program and grant management, coupled with her passion to strengthen U.S.-Japan relations will serve Sasakawa USA well. She is thrilled to continue her life’s work at Sasakawa USA and expand her understanding of the various angles that are key to strengthening the alliance.
Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA
1819 L Street, NW
Suite 300
Washington DC 20026