June 9, 2016 - In This Issue:
Sasakawa USA Forum launches with first three publications on U.S.-Japan relations

The Sasakawa USA Forum provides a new platform for research and analysis on under-reported issues related to Japan and U.S.-Japan relations in a bilateral, regional, and global context. The first three publications on the platform come from previous participants in the Sasakawa USA Emerging Experts Delegation and cover topics including climate politics in Japan, the U.S.-Japan alliance coordination mechanism, and the next steps needed for U.S.-Japan security cooperation.

The Forum now is accepting submissions for future publication. Click here for details on how to submit research for consideration. 
Op-ed: An Updated U.S.-Japan Strategy for China

The U.S.-Japan alliance requires a fresh new strategy of "Assertive Engagement" toward an increasingly ambitious China to assuage territorial uncertainties in the Asia-Pacific and maximize opportunities for economic influence. That's the recommendation of "Assertive Engagement: An Updated U.S.-Japan Strategy for China," an op-ed authored by Sasakawa USA Chairman and CEO Admiral Dennis Blair and Non-Resident Fellow Hiroko Maeda published in The National Interest on May 23.  

Chairman's Message: Reflections on the 2016 Annual Security Forum

Distinguished guests who spoke at this year's Sasakawa USA Security Forum drew important conclusions on topics including the Trans-Pacific Partnership, cybersecurity, U.S. elections, and the future of the U.S.-Japan alliance, writes Admiral Dennis Blair in this edition of the Chairman's Message. Click through to read his takeaways from the forum. 

Japan Political Pulse: Abe support jumps in wake of G7 summit, Obama's Hiroshima visit

The spring Diet session ended on June 1 with the Abe government enjoying overwhelming support just five weeks before Japan votes for half of the members of the 242-seat House of Councillors. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's hosting of the G7 summit, U.S. President Barack Obama's historic visit to Hiroshima, and Abe's decision to postpone the 2% consumption tax increase all have contributed to a significant jump in the administration's support, Sasakawa USA's Tobias Harris writes in the latest edition of Japan Political Pulse.
In the News: Maritime disputes, Obama's Hiroshima visit, cybersecurity, and North Korea

Scarborough Shoal key to strategic triangle of disputed territories within South China Sea: In an appearance on NHK, Sasakawa USA's Dr. Jeffrey Hornung utilizes the Maritime Awareness Project web portal to demonstrate how the Scarborough Shoal is within a key strategic zone where China has been showing increased aggression. Click here for more. 

A discussion on Obama's Hiroshima visit:
Sasakawa USA's Senior Fellow and Director of Programs Daniel Bob appeared on Al Jazeera's The Stream on May 26 as one of several guests to speak on President Obama's visit to Hiroshima. The conversation ranged from issues of nuclear disarmament to opinions on whether Obama should apologize for using the world's first nuclear bombs. Watch the full program here.
Cybersecurity Spotlight: Global security companies gather at Keio University:
An article in the June issue of The Journal, a publication by the American Chamber of Commerce in Japan (ACCJ), shares information from cybersecurity experts including Sasakawa USA CEO Adm. Dennis Blair at a cybersecurity event held last month by the U.S. Commercial Service and sponsored by Sasakawa USA and Keio University. Read the full article here. 
In the East China Sea, Beijing's Big Ships Push the Envelope: Chinese forces in the East China Sea are symbolically signaling a willingness to engage in aggression against Japan even while posing as Coast Guard vessels, Sasakawa USA's Dr. Jeffrey Hornung said May 22 in an article in Foreign Policy. Read the full article here. 
What Donald Trump, Kim Jong Un, Dennis Rodman, and Beijing Could Have in Common: Despite U.S. presidential contender Donald Trump's recent assertions that he would use his negotiating skills to secure a deal to halt Pyongyang's nuclear program, North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un is unlikely to budge on the matter, Sasakawa USA's Daniel Bob said in a May 18 article in Foreign Policy Read the full article here. 
Commentary: Why has Japan been cozying up to Vladimir Putin?  
In early May, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe visited Russian President Vladimir Putin in Sochi, Russia. It was the thirteenth time the two leaders have met since 2013, when Abe made the first official visit by a Japanese premier to Russia in a decade. But when Abe has only held seven meetings with his U.S. counterpart, why is he meeting Putin so often?

This commentary by Sasakawa USA's Dr. Jeffrey Hornung, originally published in Newsweek, explains the historical context of the Japan-Russia relationship and analyzes the likelihood that the two countries can reach a compromise on a longstanding territorial dispute. 
Upcoming events: Summer 2016
Summer is upon us, and so are two upcoming events focusing on engaging U.S. service members who have served in Japan, and another that will focus on maritime cooperation between the U.S., Japan, and Australia . Not all events are open to the public ----- please view each listing for details.
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