FORECAST FOR JAPAN: Security in the 1970's by James William -- Ed. Morley

FORECAST FOR JAPAN: Security in the 1970's

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KIRKUS REVIEW

Six academic specialists serenely project Japan's ""security"" policies for the coming five years. The consensus is that ""political, bureaucratic and international pressures"" make it unlikely that ""Japan will opt for. . . a stepped-up rearmament program"" during this time. The essays range from the pedantic to the journalistic and include interesting accounts of Japan's postwar power structure. Morley emphasizes the economic deterrents to rearmament -- ""high growth remains the national imperative"" -- without considering whether the current economic difficulties of Japan and other industrial nations might not qualify both ""high growth"" and rearmament. In ""game"" model fashion Nathaniel B. Thayer analyzes business, bureaucracy, and conservative parties, mixing past behavior with future variables, and asserts that the Liberal Democrats and their present defense policies will probably remain in force. Faint argumentation ripples over whether Japan's ""balanced defense"" policy was a calculated strategy based on postwar realpolitik or merely capitulation to forced disarmament and occupation. In a concluding essay Morley advises U.S. policymakers to favor only moderate Japanese rearmament, enough to provide for ""defense"" but not enough ""to assert themselves in foreign lands, or beyond the adjacent skies and seas."" The point underscores the flaw inherent in the book's approach: Japan's policies and the U.S. attitude toward them cannot be separated from U.S. aims in Asia -- and these are left unmentioned. The authors previously collaborated on the same research for the U.S. Arms Control and Disarmament Agency.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1972
Publisher: Princeton Univ. Press