June 29, 2016 - In This Issue:
Japan Political Pulse: Tracking approval ratings as HOC elections near
With campaign season for Japan's July 10 House of Councillors (HOC) elections officially underway, Sasakawa USA's Japan Political Pulse is continuing to track public support for Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

JPP aggregates major opinion polls conducted in Japan into one comprehensive, English language chart that tracks how approval and disapproval ratings change over time. JPP also provides a platform for Sasakawa USA's fellows to offer analysis of data points from recent opinion polls. How is Abe faring in the polls this week? Click through to find out.

Applications now being accepted for the new Congressional Staff Program on Asia

Applications are now being accepted for the Congressional Staff Program on Asia, Sasakawa USA's new joint program with the East-West Center in Washington. The inaugural certificate program, running this September and October, will provide Capitol Hill staff members with an opportunity to engage U.S. officials and leading experts on a range of contemporary, policy-relevant topics in U.S.-Japan and U.S.-Asia relations.
Click here to learn more or click here to apply.

Introducing Sasakawa USA's 2016-2017 Congressional Fellow: Mr. Masatoshi Asaoka  
Sasakawa USA is proud to sponsor a Congressional Fellow each year through the American Political Science Association's Congressional Fellowship Program. Spanning one year, the Sasakawa USA Congressional Fellowship provides a unique opportunity for recipients to serve in a Congressional office and gain hands-on experience in the U.S. legislative process.

This year's fellow is Masatoshi Asaoka, a master's degree candidate at Georgetown University School of Foreign Service. With a concentration is East Asian politics and security, Asaoka is currently working on his graduate thesis on defense cooperation between Japan and the Republic of Korea. After graduate school, he plans to focus on assisting countries in the Asia-Pacific region elevate their cooperation and improve the lives of their people.

Event recap: Sailors JUMP for Ichiro at Padres-Marlins game in San Diego    
About two hundred active-duty American and Japanese service members and other Southern California-area residents came together earlier this month in San Diego for a JUMP (Japan US Military Program) event celebrating camaraderie, baseball, and the U.S.-Japan alliance.

JUMP, a collaborative effort of Sasakawa USA, the Embassy of Japan in the United States, and the National Association of Japan-America Societies, aims to connect those who have served in Japan. At this second annual event at Petco Park, U.S. Navy sailors and their Japanese counterparts from the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force came together for a Padres v. Marlins game.  
View from Tokyo: How President Obama's Hiroshima Visit Happened and Why No Apology was Expected in Japan

In this first edition of the new "View from Tokyo" series from distinguished non-resident fellow Tomohiko Taniguchi, the special advisor to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe's cabinet and professor at Keio University's Graduate School of System Design and Management writes on President Barack Obama's speech in Hiroshima.

"In Hiroshima he towered above any politicking, which can easily get nasty in our less-than-ideal world, especially in an election year," he writes. "What was behind his visit to Hiroshima? In retrospect many actions and events -----    some planned, some not -----    merged to pave the way for President Obama to fulfill his wish to visit Hiroshima while in office."

In the News: Maritime tensions, Okinawa bases , cybersecurity, and the future of U.S.-Japan relations

China shadows U.S. warships amid rising tensions in Asia: The People's Liberation Army Navy continued its recent pattern of increasingly assertive behavior in the South China Sea by shadowing warships from the U.S., Japan, and India as they conducted joint military exercises. Although the Chinese vessels were uninvited, such actions have "come to be the norm for China," Sasakawa USA's Dr. Jeffrey Hornung said in an article in USA Today. Click here for more.

Adm. Dennis Blair: At Scarborough Shoal, China is Playing with Fire:
If China were to start dredging on the disputed Scarborough Shoal, it would risk a potential military confrontation with the United States, Sasakawa USA Chairman and CEO Adm. Dennis Blair said in a Foreign Policy article. Click here to read more.

Cloud cybersecurity and future development focus of panel: Sasakawa USA's William "Bud" Roth recently participated as an expert panelist in the 2016 Asia Forum's Cyber Security and Privacy series hosted by the Cyber Law Centre at Korea University in Seoul. The Asia Pacific Institute for the Digital Economy covered the event. Click here to read more.  

Maeda and Blair discuss the future of U.S.-Japan relations in Q&A-style post: Two Sasakawa USA experts came together recently to discuss the future of the U.S.-Japan relationship. The Japanese-language Q&A is now featured on the PHP Institute's website. Click here to read more.

Okinawa protests, the U.S.-Japan alliance, and the strategic big picture: The horrific murder of an Okinawan woman by an American has stirred large-scale protests in opposition to the United States' large military presence on the island, but the strategic value of the island "cannot be underestimated," Sasakawa USA's distinguished non-resident fellow Tomohiko Taniguchi said on Al Jazeera's Inside Story on June 19. Click here to watch. 
Cyber beat: What Do You Mean, "Ethical" Hacker? 
"Ethical hacker" is a fairly new term in the United States, and newer still in Japan. These individuals are sometimes called "white hat hackers" (ホワイトハッカー), "hackers of justice" (正義のハッカー), or "penetration testers," writes Sasakawa USA's Graham Cadwell Dietz in the Cyber Beat blog. But isn't "ethical hacker" an oxymoron? Aren't hackers the bad guys? As it turns out, not all of them are.

From Nippon.com: The consumption tax and efforts to encourage women leaders

Fiscal Concerns Grow as Abe Again Postpones Consumption Tax Hike:
Prime Minister Abe Shinzo announced on June 1 that he would postpone raising the consumption tax from 8% to 10% until October 2019. The decision marks the second time for Abe to delay the hike, putting it a full four years later than planned. Click here to read more. 

Fostering a New Generation of Women Leaders:
Japan recently brought into force a new law aimed at closing the gender gap in the nation's workforce by bringing more women into mid- and upper-management positions. To prepare women for civic and private leadership roles, a new program provides young female college students unique opportunities to learn from prominent leaders in both Japan and the United States. Click here to read more.  
Upcoming events: Summer 2016
Summer is upon us, and several upcoming events in Washington D.C. and New Orleans will delve into current U.S.-Japan news topics while celebrating the alliance between both nations . Not all events are open to the public ----- please view each listing for details.
Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA

1819 L Street NW
Suite 300
Washington DC 20036