May 17, 2018 - In This Issue:


Event Recap: Fifth Annual Security Forum

Sasakawa USA hosted the Fifth Annual Security Forum on May 2, inviting a wide range of experts from government, business, academia, and think tanks to discuss Asian security from the context of the U.S.-Japan alliance. "The U.S.-Japan Alliance: Deepening Ties while Confronting New Challenges" covered a variety of topics including diplomacy with North Korea; the results of Sasakawa USA's recent Exercise Pacific Trident tabletop exercise; Japan's nuclear policy; and the North Korean cyber threat. The event was held at the Willard InterContinental in Washington, DC.

Ambassador Shinsuke Sugiyama, the Japanese ambassador to the United States, and Robert Work, former Deputy Secretary of Defense, were among the featured speakers. The conference included seven panels with more than 30 speakers and moderators.

Read a recap of the Annual Security Forum, watch a recording of all speeches and panels, and view a gallery of photos on the Sasakawa USA website.

Event Recap: "North Korean Diplomacy in the Era of Summits" 

On April 30, Sasakawa USA and the Korea Economic Institute of America (KEI) jointly hosted "North Korean Diplomacy in the Era of Summits," a public panel discussion on recent diplomatic efforts involving North Korea. The discussion, which included Ambassador James Zumwalt, CEO, Sasakawa USA, focused on how to evaluate North Korea's statements regarding denuclearizing and thawing relations with South Korea and the United States.

Event Recap: Discussion on Japanese politics and gender
with Diet member

Sasakawa USA hosted Hiroe Makiyama, Member of the Japanese House of Councillors (Democratic Party, Kanagawa prefecture), for a conversation on Japanese politics and her work on gender equality and childcare from 3-4:30 p.m. on Monday, April 30. Tobias Harris, Sasakawa USA's Fellow for Economy, Trade and Business and creator of Japan Political Pulse, served as moderator. At the event, Makiyama shared her perspective as part of the opposition party on recent political developments in Japan and presented on gender gaps in Japan and her policy recommendations.
In the News: "Abe's push to change Japan's defense strategy" 

Brittney Washington, Program Assistant for Sasakawa USA, and Kangkyu "David" Lee, former Program Assistant for Sasakawa USA, have published an article in Japan Today about Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's efforts to constitutionally redefine Japan's national defense strategy. Published on April 30, "Abe's push to change Japan's defense strategy" considers the current debate over the topic as "a clash between Japan's decades-long identity as a pacifist nation and Abe's current dream to make Japan a normal, democratic power with a strong military."
Accepting Applications: Sasakawa USA/USJETAA Grants for JETAA Chapters & Sub-Chapters

To support American JET alumni and to encourage their involvement in U.S.-Japan relations, Sasakawa USA is pleased to continue its partnership with the U.S. Japan Exchange & Teaching Programme Alumni Association (USJETAA) to offer a competitive mini-grant program vis-à-vis the JET Alumni Associations (JETAAs) chapters and subchapters within the United States.  The program is intended to help chapters strengthen the JET alumni network and elevate their leadership role in their local U.S.-Japan community.  Applications for 2018-2019 are due July 30.

Sasakawa USA Forum: "Realizing a 'Seamless Response': Incorporating the Japan Coast Guard in the U.S.-Japan Alliance"

In Sasakawa USA Forum Issue No. 13, Michael Bosack, a Ph.D. candidate at the International University of Japan's Graduate School of International Relations, examines the obstacles that hinder law enforcement entities such as the Japan Coast Guard from playing a larger role in the U.S.-Japan alliance.  " Realizing a 'Seamless Response': Incorporating the Japan Coast Guard in the U.S.-Japan Alliance " proposes recommendations for incorporating the Japan Coast Guard into the U.S.-Japan alliance to better respond to grey zone conflicts and escalations.

The Sasakawa USA Forum is currently  accepting submissions  for Fall/Winter 2018-2019. Submissions should be 750 to 2,000 words in length and written on issues that previously have been inadequately covered regarding Japan or U.S.-Japan relations from a bilateral, regional, and global context. For more information, contact Darah Phillip at
Event Recap: "Sister Cities: Seedbed for the Grassroots of U.S.-Japan Relations"

On April 25, Sasakawa USA hosted Grace Ruch Clegg, former Projects and Outreach Coordinator at the East-West Center in Washington, to present on her upcoming paper, "Sister Cities: Seedbed for the Grassroots of U.S.-Japan Relations." The luncheon was part of Sasakawa USA's Alumni Program and moderated by Juliane Doscher, Executive Assistant to the CEO & Program Assistant at Sasakawa USA.

Upcoming Events

Join Sasakawa USA for upcoming events in Tokyo and Washington, DC, focused on U.S.-Asia relations. Please check our events page for event details and new listings as we post them.

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