US-Japan Policy 1941-2018: The Continuation of Great Power Politics
MetadataShow full item record
This paper examines the durability of the US-Japan alliance by retracing its historical development. It describes how US and Japanese geopolitical goals have shifted from 1941 to the present. It employs the realist geopolitical theory of Professor John Mearsheimer and the soft power theory of Professor Joseph Nye to examine the relevance of Japan to US interests in Asia. The research concludes that Japan remains an indispensable ally primarily due the strategic threat posed by the growing Chinese military presence in the region. In point of fact, the relative weakening of Japanese economic power in the face of a rising China has been the greatest boon to US-Japan relations since the Cold War. In spite of President Trump’s personal objections to America’s involvement in international institutions, the status quo will likely persevere for several decades due to the continuance of certain geostrategic pressures.