Japanese foreign policy during the Cold War was largely a response to the memory of its pre-World War II history. Following the Meiji reforms. Japan sought to expand into Asia through liberal imperialism and then sought to consolidate its empire through liberal internationalism. However, when its imperial designs were rejected by its Western foes and allies alike, Japan-centered pan-Asianist ideology grew in strength. Japan's imperialist policies before the Second World War caused irreparable damage in relations with other Asian nations from Japan. Japanese foreign policy makers have had to deal with the effects of its prewar policies and develop its foreign policy largely in the shadow of history.Yet the Cold War also meant that the ability of Japanese foreign policymaking was severely constrained by the bipolar international political structure characterized by rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union. The United States defeated Japan in the Second World War and subsequently occupied it. The American occupation regime sought to destroy Japan's political. economic, and military structure. Under these circumstances. Japan did not appear to have much choice other than accepting the terms imposed by the United States; Japanese leaders also saw them as an opportunity. Partly, this was because two of Japan's regional neighbors and competitors against which Japan had fought wars in its imperial history, namely, Russia and China, were in the opposite camp. Particularly trom the perspective of Anglophile liberals, it was a tragedy for Japan that these powers had been the allies of the United States during the Pacific War and now Japan had the opportunity to be closer to the United States. Hence Japan "embraced its defeat" and set out to benefit trom the Cold War and liberal international economic system as a close ally of the United States. I
While the military defeat of Japan did not lead to a change of political system, it ushered in a new period in Japanese history. Japan came under the first foreign occupation in its entire history. The basic parameters of Japanese foreign policy emerged in the context ofthis occupation. Japan was a country without a military power, and there was no desire among Japanese elites or demands by the public to change this fate. There were different views in Japan on how to respond to this new era with a different interpretation of Japanese history. On the left side of the political spectrum, the Socialist and Communist Parties, supported by leading intellectuals such as Masao Maruyama and Ikutaro Shimizu, believed that any involvement in military ventures could lead to hyper nationalism and war. In their opinion, Japan's destiny was to be a "peace nation," with neutrality in the Cold War. This would make Japan a role model that would inspire the world through its principled renunciation of war as a tool of foreign policy devoted to the principle of unarmed neutrality.2 On the conservative side, there was the dispute of the two groups of liberal conservatives led by Yoshida and the right-wing conservatives led by Kishi. To the right, the competition was between two factions of conservative politics:liberal conservatives (Yoshida School) and the right-wing conservatives (Kishi School). Unlike the left, these two conservative groups shared a similar perspective of economic development and considered the alliance with the United States in positive terms. From the perspective of Shidehara, Yoshida, and other liberal internationalists, the alliance with the United States reminded them the Anglo-Japanese alliance system (1902-1923), from which Japan had greatly benefited. From the perspective of right-wing conservatives like Kishi, who served the prewar political establishment in top positions, Japan's traditional anti-communist stance would be better served by an alliance with the United States. However, they differed in the way Japan could utilize this alliance.Liberal conservatives led by Yoshida sought to utilize the U.S.-Japan alliance as a security umbrella under which Japan did not have to remilitarize and thus was able to follow a developmentalist orientation with a minimal military role. A strong alliance with the United States would enable Japan to focus on the expansion of markets in the East and Southeast Asia. Japan had to be a merchant nation (shonin kokka) without having to worry about its security in the context of the U.S.-Japan Bilateral Security Treaty. This strategy known as the Yoshida Doctrine shaped much of Japan's Cold War foreign policy. Right-wing conservatives, on the other hand, sought to utilize the Cold War framework and American security dependence on the Japanese islands as an opportunity to bargain for an increase in Japan's military capabilities and regional power. The initial postwar American approach to Japan and East Asia aimed to reduce Japan's military capabilities and in this context Americans preferred working with liberals. However, soon the security needs of the United States in East Asia changed as its basic attention has shifted to the Soviet Union and its ally China as main contenders. Consequently the United States reversed its perception of Japan and began to demand it to assume a larger military role in their alliance formation. However, the liberal conservatives did not accept this change in Japan's postwar role, forcing Americans to seek a new friendship with the old guards who were their enemies just a few years earlier. Hence the early Cold War political history of Japan was characterized by an interplay among the United States, liberal conservatives and the old guards.
The U.S. Occupation of Japan and the Return of Liberal Conservatives
Following its surrender in the Second World War, Japan remained underAmerican occupation until 1952, when it gained its formal independence. The occupation regime found the liberal elite of the 1920‘s as their natural ally. These elites were happy to get rid of Japan's militaristic political system and also because they saw that territorial integrity of Japan was largely maintained, and Russia, Japan's primary historical geopolitical enemy, was excluded from the occupation of Japan. The American occupation and the alliance with the United States, they believed, would bring Japan back to the liberal period of 1920s. In the mind of Anglophile Japanese liberals, the successful alliance with Britain before and during the First World War had to serve as a model for Japan's foreign policy after the Second World War. In their opinion, it was a tragic mistake for Japan to fail to renew this alliance then, and now the alliance with the United States was another opportunity.In the initial stages of the postwar era, the Allied powers who shaped the new world system agreed unanimously that Japan, like Germany, had to be prevented from ever becoming a military force. American war and peace policy toward Japan in the 1940s was led by the aim of eradicating "the evil.“3 Hence, the American occupation authority, Supreme Command for the Allied Powers (SCAP), dictated a pacifist foreign policy on Japan by dismantling its war-making capacities and by dissolving its economic, social, and political structures.4
The Japanese armed forces were almost entirely demobilized and the remaining artillery, warships, and aircraft were destroyed. At the time of the occupation, the Japanese economy was dominated by major industrial and business conglomerates, zaibatsu, which functioned as business empires embracing dozens of corporations in the field of manufacturing, trade, and finance. They were owned and controlled by individual families. Four major zaibatsu (Mitsui, Mitsubishi, Surnitomo, and Yasuda) that had roots in the social upheavals of the Tokugawa era and six new zaibatsu (Asano, Furukawa, Nissan, Okura, Nomura, and Nakajima) that emerged only after the Russo-Japanese war were accused of sponsoring and profiting from the war. In 1945, ten combines together controlled 49 percent of capital invested in mining, machinery, ship-building and chemicals, 50 percent of capital in banking, 60 percent in insurance, and 61 percent in shipping.s The Supreme Commander of the Allied Powers General MacArthur wanted to dismantle these companies altogether. However, before they were totally destroyed, Americans changed their basic strategy and initiated "the reverse course." Eventually, only the families owning these companies were removed from their ownership and the zaibatsu system reemerged as keiretsu business groupings. Their vertically integrated chain of command with a owner family in control transformed into a more loosely and horizontal relationships and association.It was the Cold War that compelled the United States to change its basic threat perceptions about Japan as was the case with Germany. Americans now considered its war time ally Russians and the Chinese as the primary source of insecurity.
Consequently, they altered their views concerning their old foes, Japan and Germany, and began to see them as allies against new foes who were their old allies. Tn the postwar world, the Soviet Union was the only truly independent nation alongside the United States. Japan and Gennany were both within the geographical reach of the Soviet Union and it was therefore imperative for the United States to deny the Soviets their still potent power.6 Subsequently, Americans reversed their initial strategy of dismantling economic power of these countries and embarked upon a project of rebuilding them.The Japanese were also happy that the occupation of their country was monopolized by the United States and carried out in a different way from that of Germany. Quite significantly, Emperor Hirohito remained in his throne albeit as a humanized figure and was not subjected to trial process for war crimes. In an secret cable to General Dwight D. Eisenhower, then the army chief of staff, General MacArthur, characterized the emperor as a symbol which united the Japanese and warned that his indictment would lead to serious problems including even an armed resistance against the occupation and eventually a communist take-over.7 To cope with the ensuing chaos in the event of the indictment of the emperor, MacArthur declared that he needed at least a million troops and several hundred thousand imported civil servicemen.8 Brigadier General Elliott Thorpe who advised keeping the emperor stated that because otherwise we would-had nothing but chaos. The religion was gone, the government was gone, and he was the only symbol of control. Now, I know he had his hand in the cookie jar, and he wasn't any innocent little child. But he was of great use to us, and that was the basis on which I recommended [to] the Old Man (MacArthur) that we keep him.9
Similarly Yoshida Shigeru noted in his memoirs: The General [MacArthur] had come to have a great respect for the Emperor, and even told me once that, although Japan had lost the war, the Throne was still important to the Japanese people and the reconstruction of Japan depended on the people rallying to the Imperial symbol...I have no hesitation in saying that it was the attitude adopted by General MacArthur towards the Throne, more than any other single factor, that made the Occupation an historic success.10 In a way, by acquitting the emperor, the occupation regime aimed to save itself from popular resistance and Japan from chaos and allegedly from Communism.However, inasmuch as the emperor represented the nation and symbolized national unity, his exoneration also symbolized Japan's exoneration from war responsibilities. Only twenty-five Japanese military officers were abdicated as Class-A war criminals and seven of them were sentenced to death by hanging. The Japanese bureaucracy and state system were largely kept intact. Practically, exoneration of the emperor symbolized institutional continuity of Japan and thus prevented Japan from sharing the same fate with Germany.As a former navy serviceman put this quite succinctly, "even the emperor gets away without taking responsibility, so there is no need for us to take responsibility, no matter what we did."l1 Emperor Hirohito's famous New Year's rescript in 1946 formally titled "Rescript to Promote the National Destiny" but commonly known as the Declaration of Humanity especially in the Western media actually stressed political continuity of Japan by tracing the origins of democracy to the Meiji emperor. In his new year address to the Japanese nation, Hirohito stressed the union of democracy and monarchy since the Meiji period.He explicitly referred to Charter Oath of 1868, an oath that the Meiji emperor had sworn to Amaterasu Omikami as setting the foundations of constitutional monarchy in Japan. 12
As Bix states, "in effect, Emperor Meiji, dead since 1912, was now made the founding father of the political system about to be born in 1946.“13 By declaring continuity with the Meiji past, he meant that there was nothing new under the Sun. Hence the pan Asianist era between the Meiji and the American occupation was being framed as an aberration ftom the long history of the union of democracy and monarchy. Interestingly the emergence of Japanese imperial policies had its roots in the Meiji RestQration, and by claiming roots in the Meiji history, the postwar Japan was never able to conftont this history. The Meiji era philosopher Fukuzawa Yukichi who articulated the shift of civilizational identity reincarnated in the form of a picture on Japan's ten-thousand yen banknote. The new Japanese elite who came ftom the liberal background considered this new political situation advantageous to their interests. The first prime minister of Japan after the war, Shidehara Kijilro, who had been the minister of foreign affairs throughout the 1920s and had served as the ambassador of Japan to the United States between 1919 and 1922, was known for his noninterventionist policies toward China and strong relations with Britain and the United States. While liberals including Shidehara considered the Sino-Japanese relationship as critically important for Japanese interests, they regarded the military intervention as advocated and practiced by the Japanese military and militarist leadership as counterproductive. Instead, in the interwar period, Shidehara and others advocated reliance on good relations with the United States and Britain in order to expand Japan's sphere of interests in Asia. In this regard, Japan had to pursue coexistence with the Soviet Union, even though Shidehara detested the Soviet interests in Manchuria. 14
Not surprisingly Japan's cautious and deeply Anglophile foreign policy orientation in the 1920s had come to be known as the "Shidehara diplomacy," gradually with negative connotations as used by his increasingly militarist rivals. After taking part in the London Naval Conference in 1930, which imposed naval disarmament and tonnage ratio between Britain, the United States, and Japan, Shidehara and his approach to foreign policy had become the prime target of the militarists. Following the Manchurian Incident which led to increased militarization of politics, Shidehara had kept himself out of politics, as a result of his disillusionment with Japan's increasing militarization. Hence this liberal and pro- Western political background of his made him an ideal choice for the American occupation regime as the interim prime minister of Japan. However, Japan's first postwar elections were conducted in 1946; Shidehara's Progressive Party was defeated by the Liberal Party led by Yoshida Shigeru, who had served as Shidehara's foreign minister. Yoshida who came from a similar liberal background as Shidehara subsequently emerged as Japan's most influential postwar politician, setting the basic parameters of Japanese foreign policy for many decades to come.
Like Shidehara, Yoshida Shigeru was a highly influential member of the prewar liberal elite. His mindset was shaped in the liberal currents of the 1920s and the experience with prewar militarists prior to the Pacific War. In the 1930s, he was Japan's ambassador to Italy and the United Kingdom. In 1939, he retired from politics, as a result of his disillusionment with the increasingly militarist government in Tokyo. Towards the end of the war, in 1944, he was sentenced to a prison term for defending antimilitarist views. He served as prime minister between 1946 and 1954, interrupted only by the period between May 1947 and October 1948. During his tenure as prime minister, Yoshida shaped Japan's basic foreign policy orientation and left a lasting legacy in Japanese politics.
With Yoshida, the liberal conservative political elite returned to politics as the right-wing conservatives were purged by the SCAP. Consequently, the Japanese state identity became strongly oriented in favor of close relations with the West, particularly the United States. Although it can be argued that Japan had no other choice but to submit itself to the United States as an occupied country in an unfriendly Asian neighborhood, Anglophile outlook was in fact deeply rooted in the identity of the liberal conservative Japanese leaders. Identity conflict at the top of Japanese leadership predated American occupation and now Japan's defeat in the war .proved to be a victory for the Anglophile political elite. As Yoshida once noted, "history provides examples of winning by diplomacy after losing in war.'.l5
By remaining at the helm until 1954, Yoshida shaped Japan's postwar identity as a nonmilitarist and trade-oriented country. Yoshida was a prewar liberal but a postwar conservative politician. However, his liberalism should be understood in the context of the Meiji era liberal imperialism. He adopted the famous Meiji era motto of "rich
country. strong army" (fUkoku kyohei) and modified it to a different context. His doctrine called for a strong economy first in order to build a strong country . Yoshida considered the era of the Anglo-Japanese Alliance as his ideal, as this alliance had allowed Japan the opportunity of economic development and expansion of its sphere of interests into Asia through agreement with the dominant Western power of the time. Yoshida realized that under the current U.S. hegemony, the U.S.-Japanese alliance appeared to offer similar advantages to Japan. He commented on this in his memoirs:That Japan should have achieved a leading position among the nations of the world by pursuing her policy of alliance with Great Britain and friendship with the United States throughout the Meiji and Taisho periods, and then discarded that traditional diplomatic policy and chosen to throw her lot with the distant Axis Powers was not only a major strategic blunder but an action all the more regrettable in that it destroyed the trust placed by other countries in Japan as a nation. Recovery ftom this historic 'stumble' will require years to complete, but it is the task before my nation today and it exceeds all others in importance. Japan cannot allow the work of our great national leaders of the Meiji and Taisho periods, who were the architects of modern Japan, to remain, as it now is, in ruins.16
Yoshida's remarks on relations with the United States suggests that the alliance was not only an arrangement the United States imposed on Japan, but it was, in fact, deeply rooted in traditional strategic thinking of the liberal, Anglophile political elites: Japan's policies vis-a-vis the United States must change as the nation's economic position improves, with the subsequent strengthening of the country's international status and self-respect, and such a change is already seen to be occurring. Yet the maintenance of close bonds of ftiendship with the United States, based upon a deep mutuality of interests, must be one of the pillars of Japan's fundamental policy and always remain so.17
Similarly Akira Iriye notes:[the] idea that postwar Japan must link itself to the rest of the world, not through arms but through cultural and economic relations, seems to have been widely shared at that time- But it would be wrong to say that it was an idea forced upon the Japanese by the occupation authorities. Rather, it may be argued that an undercurrent of cultural thought that had been suppressed in an earlier, more nationalistic and pan-Asianist climate was being unleashed in the new international environment. For, at bottom, the culturalism of postwar Japan assumed that the Japanese people's salvation lay in becoming 'global citizens' (as the newspaper, Asahi, noted), parting with a narrow nationalism or pan-Asianism. The path of universalism, rather than particularism, or of internationalism rather than nationalism, provided the ideological starting point for postwar Japanese foreign policy.18
Yoshida devised a master plan for the postwar economic development of Japan.This postwar grand strategy aimed to concentrate on economic development without minimal military commitment. Yoshida's personal experience with the old military elite before the war probably contributed to his outlook. Rather than developing a Japanese military power, Yoshida considered the American military presence in Japan in the Cold War international context as an opportunity for achieving this goal. The Japanese economy, which was totally shattered and exhausted during the war, was now being revived with the help of the very country that had destroyed it. Japan found what it was looking for so desperately: capital for its economic development in addition to access to markets and raw materials in Asia. All these were now provided through alliance with the United States in the new security environment after the war. On the other hand, for Japan,Russia represented an old foe, and it was advantageous to have the U.S. backing to counter perceived Russian ambitions in Asia. In other words, Japan had lost a war but came to like its consequences. In this regard, liberal and right-wing conservatives did not disagree. Their strongest disagreement was over how to benefit from the alliance with the United States to advance Japan's interests.Thus to the enjoyment of the liberal conservatives including Yoshida, the American occupation government in Japan, SCAP, carried out comprehensive educational and administrative reforms which nevertheless adhered to the red line drawn around the imperial house. SCAP drafted Japan's postwar constitution, which provided Yoshida with a golden opportunity for concentrating on economic development without having to deal with security problems. Article 9 of the new Japanese Constitution explicitly banned remilitarization: Aspiring sincerely to an international peace based on justice and order, the Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as means of settling international disputes.
In order to accomplish the aim of the preceding paragraph, land, sea, and air forces, as well as other war potential, will never be maintained. The right of belligerency of the state will not be recognized.Many considered Article 9 as a quid pro quo for retaining the Emperor. As the emperor himself was seen by the Allied powers as being responsible for Japan's aggressive behavior before the war, the clause weakened their arguments in favor of abolishing the throne. While the exact rationale behind this American-imposed war denouncing clause might be unclear, it was obvious that the United States soon had to start pressuring the Japanese to remove it. Since 1947 when the postwar Constitution was approved, Washington has tried to convince Tokyo that they should remove the clause. General McArthur himself suggested that the idea was given to him by Prime Minister Shidehara. This would not be surprising, as Shidehara and Yoshida liked the idea of a U.S.-security umbrella without Japan's assuming any military responsibility.
One of the principal objectives of Yoshida's foreign policy was to avoid becoming too deeply involved in U.s. global and regional Cold War strategy. When asked his opinion about the "no war" clause, Yoshida told that "it was the greatest thing the United States could do for Japan, because now the nation could turn to rebuilding while depending on America for her defense.“19 However, it could be argued that Yoshida was not a pacifist ideologically and that his liberalism very much reflected his realistic assessment of Japan's options within the postwar constraints. As explained by Takeshi: Yoshida was not a pure pacifist. Rather, his interpretation reflected his analysis of Japan's current position as an occupied nation.. ..Yoshida was a power politician who represented a state that lacked power, for Japan at the time had only the potential to exercise power at some uncertain point in the future.20 A similar point is made by Pyle:Yoshida was too pragmatic and non-doctrinaire to allow his views to be so simply characterized. He himself never spoke of a "Yoshida Doctrine" and we can only conjecture at the ways he might have taken issue with the subsequent policies of the so-called Yoshida School. He was too proud and too much of a realist and nationalist to accept the implication of a politically and diplomatically passive Japan as a corollary of his policies.21
The Yoshida Doctrine, as drawn from Yoshida's practice and as applied by his followers such as Ikeda and Sata, was highlighted by a number of foreign policy ideas: Japan's economic growth should be the prime national goal. Political economic cooperation with the United States was necessary for this purpose. Japan should remain lightly armed and avoid involvement in international political-strategic issues. To gain a long-term guarantee for its own security, Japan would provide bases for the US Army, Navy and Air Force.22
As security of Japan was granted by Americans, the Japanese could concentrate on their economic prosperity. This was more than welcomed by Yoshida and like-minded liberal Japanese leaders. The 1940s and 1950s witnessed a strong Japanese economic recovery backed by the acceptance of its products in the U.S. market. The United States took a number of measures to facilitate the reconstruction of the Japanese economy, not only opening its mvn markets to Japanese products but also forcing the European colonial powers to open their colonies in South and Southeast Asia to Japanese competition.23 The United States secured Japanese participation in the international economic system, by providing Japan entry into the international economic system; Japan became a member of the IMF, the GATT, and other international organizations despite initial European opposition? For many years, Japan was a free-rider economically as well as militarily, while the United States also enjoyed a :tree ride on Japanese territory. Japan had access to American markets by closing its own to foreign products, leading to a steady economic growth rate. Initially this one-sided beneficiary position of Japan was tolerated by the United States because of Japan's importance for American security policies in the Pacific. However, soon after the United States changed its position and started to demand greater Japanese contribution to the alliance. Yet the United States was unable to break the resistance of Yoshida and his like-minded students in Japanese politics.
The Yoshida government persistently resisted American pressures for its rearmament by referring to Article 9 of its American-imposed constitution. Besides the logic of economic development, from the Japanese perspective, the lack of a Japanese military power was necessary to mend relations with Asian nations. Interestingly, the announced purpose of the new Sino-Soviet alliance was not countering the U.S. motives in Asia but rather deterring a resurgence of Japanese imperialism and militarism.28 It appeared that both countries considered the possibility of Japan's rearming itself more threatening than the military presence of the United States in Japan. Yoshida and others always believed that a militarized Japan would inevitably invoke historical memories of Asians and create further complexities for Japanese foreign policy. This tenet of Japanese postwar foreign policy as devised by Yoshida came to be challenged by a former key member of the prewar militarist government whose postwar comeback was made possible by the increasingly frustrated United States.
Return of the Old Guards
SCAP purged members of the prewar Japanese government as well as those of the wider political and intellectual elite. However, the initially tough attitude of the Americans towards the former leadership was muted as soon as it became clear that the United States needed a strong Japan in the context of the Cold War to-serve as a "bulwark against Communism." The "reverse course" (gyaku kosu) began with the increasing anticommunist policies of both the Japanese government and SCAP in the period between late 1947 and the beginning of 1950s.29 In this anticommunist political climate, democratization and de-militarization processes were postponed in favor of a movement towards remilitarization and twisting the antimilitarist constitution to suit goals of remilitarization. A series of regressive and authoritarian policies such as the prohibition of strikes and demonstrations led to a popular fear that Americans would bring back the dictatorship to secure their security needs. De-purging of Kishi coincided with this change of political climate. Having totally disarmed Japan, the United States reversed its policy and de purged some members of the prewar political system, the most important of whom was Kishi Nobusuke. Kishi was no outsider to the pan-Asianist imperialist political establishment in the 1930s and 19405, since he had served as a new bureaucrat in Japanese government's economic planning in the 19305, and then as an administrator in Manchuria between 1936 and 1939. Eventually, he became Minister of Commerce and Industry under the Tojo Hideki cabinet. Following the resignation of Tojo, he was appointed deputy minister of Munitions. After the war, however, he was imprisoned as a Class-A war criminal suspect but not tried for three years. Class-A category designated twenty-five military and political leaders as convicted by the International Military Tribunal for the Far East. These were the elites of the imperial political establishment. As Kishi would later concede, ''the development of the Cold War saved my life. . . . it was the U.S.-Soviet discord that led to my release from prison."30 Kishi became prime minister only five years after being released from prison. In 1941, he had cosigned the decision, as a member of the wartime cabinet, to declare war against the United States. Only sixteen years later, in 1957, he was described by Richard Nixon as "not only a great leader of the free world, but also a loyal and great friend of the people of the United States." In the context of the Cold War, such differences could be resolved with no difficulty. Anti-Communism became the new American ideology and American security needs required a friendly and stronger Japan: it was more than what Kishi could have asked for.
On his release from prison, Kishi formed his own political party, the Japan Reconstruction Federation, around a number of former members of a prewar conservative party Minseito. Since he was still banned, he made former Foreign Minister Shigemitsu Mamoru its nominal leader. Its goals were anti-Communism, deepening ofties with Asia, promotion of small and medium-sized industries, deepening of U.S.-Japan economic relations, and revising the Constitution. He raised hundreds of millions of yen from industrialists, mainly the defense-industry, with whom had ties going back to the prewar era. His influential contacts such as Fujiyama Aiichiro, a famous businessman and politician before and after the war, provided Kishi an enormous financial capital to build what one biographer has called an "exquisitely institutionalized" system of money politics (seichi na kozoka).31 However, after his party failed miserably against Yoshida's Liberal Party in 1952, Kishi understood that he had to fonn an alliance with other parties. He first flirted with joining the Socialist Party, but his brother Sato Eisaku convinced him to join the Liberal Party of Yoshida. Although Yoshida did not want to accept his former prewar political enemy, Kishi was able to bring substantial fmancial resources to the table thanks to his close links with the industrial and business circles. Kishi won his first Diet seat in 1953 as a result of this alliance. Soon after Kishi started undennining the position of Yoshida within the party by forming his own faction and by constantly criticizing Yoshida for being soft against the Americans and calling for Japanese military and economic planning. Kishi, intellectually inspired by Kita Ikki in the prewar years, was an ardent national socialist with a firm beliefin central economic planning. In 1953, Kishi formed his own political party, the Democratic Party, in alliance with other anti-Yoshida factions within the Liberal Party.
Yoshida had retained his position as prime minister in three consecutive elections held in 1949, 1952, and 1953. However, under pressure coming from the Democratic Party as well as from Americans who lost their hopes with him, Yoshida resigned in 1953, and Democratic Party chairman, Ichiro Hatoyama, became prime minister. However, the real power struggle was still between Kishi and Yoshida. Hence the center right platform of Japanese politics was highly fragmented and characterized by personal as well as ideological conflicts between these two politicians. Meanwhile, previously disunited fractions of the socialist party agreed to unite, posing now a serious threat to the dominance of the conservatives. Americans were clearly worried about another socialist election victory after the 1947 elections as a result of splits in the conservative platform. Consequently under their pressure, the Liberal and Democratic parties merged under the name of Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) in 1955. This was an uneasy union of opposing personalities and schools of thought in center-right politics, laying the foundations of the faction system within the party. Since then the LDP has become almost synonymous with Japanese politics, as the party has governed the country for more than four decades. Reflecting its foundation as a merger of two political parties and charismatic leaders, more specifically Yoshida and Kishi, LOP has represented a diverse range of viewpoints, which became institutionalized as factions (habatsu). These factions have been more than groupings of interest-oriented
politicians. Factions have been like schools in themselves with distinct views on domestic and international politics. It would also be incorrect to trace the origins of LOP factions simply to the establishment of the LOP in the postwar era. Rather their genealogy can be traced back to the Meiji era in the political movements of the time. Because of the LDP's hegemonic dominance in Japanese politics, intraparty rather than interparty politics and cleavages have been more salient for shaping political debates. But Identity politics in Japanese foreign policy is noticeable not only between rival political parties but also and more significantly among rival factions within the LOP. These factions essentially have been "parties within a party.“32
Kishi became prime minister in 1957 one year after losing a party presidential elections to Ishibashi Tanzan, commonly regarded as a genuine liberal Asianist who "never embraced either the symbols or the substance of the wartime ideology.“33 Before the war, Ishibashi, who was an influential journalist and economist, was strongly detested by the militarist regime because of his advocacy of the idea of "Small Japan" and Japan's withdrawal from Manchuria. In 1955, he joined the LDP and, with the support of the liberals, won its presidential elections against Kishi. Ishibashi's election was made possible by a new party presidential election system which required absolute votes of Diet members rather than negotiations (hanashiai) among party elders. Clearly the votes that Ishibashi obtained indicated that dominant groups in the LDP, like opposition parties and much of the electorate, did not want Japan to militarize and become involved in U.S. global and regional strategies as Kishi represented just the opposite view. Kishi was favored by the United States because of his willingness to enlarge Japan's role within the U.S.-Japan alliance system. Consequently, the Eisenhower administration engineered and basically fmanced his comeback to the center of Japanese politics and his election as prime minister in 1957.34 One of the ways the United States financed Kishi was through the M-fund. Named after U.S. Major General William Marquat, the fund's initial overseer, M-fund was built through the sale of surplus military material in order to provide Japan a Marshal] Plan-like financial capital to fund economic and political development and was said to have an asset base worth $35 billion by 1960. Presumably in their 1957 Washington meeting, Vice President Nixon gave the control of M-fund not to the Japanese government, but to Prime Minister Kishi personally in order to secure Tokyo's secret financial support for his campaign in the presidential elections.35 Immediately after assuming power, Kishi found himself in the politics of revision of the U.S.-Japan Security Treaty in 1960. The old treaty gave the United States the right to suppress anti-American movements within Japan through force, but it did not oblige the United States to protect Japan against foreign threats. The revised treaty that Kishi negotiated with Americans removed this internal role for the United States and gave it a more balanced and mutual tone with a U.S. pledge to defend Japan. However, although arguably this was a more balanced alliance for Japan, it provoked the most violent protest movement (An po) ever seen in postwar Japanese history. Demonstrations erupted against Kishi's undemocratic way of passing the treaty in Diet.36
Kishi handled the domestic crisis heavy-handedly, increasing the public anger towards militarism that he came to be associated with. The protests were so intense that they forced U.S. President Eisenhower to cancel his scheduled visit to Japan. During this time, both the Japanese and U.S. governments accused the protesters of being communist agents. American media sharply criticized their Japanese counterparts as a mouthpiece of communists because of their relative sympathy towards these protests.37 Although the treaty passed in the Diet, Kishi resigned as a result of demonstrations and his growing unpopularity. Nevertheless, his political influence continued within the LDP.
Yoshida and Kishi Schools: Divergent Policies toward Asia
During the greater part of the Cold War period, Japan's relations with East Asia were an extension of its relations with the United States. Japan was able to pursue its policies toward East Asia to the extent that these were in tune with overall U.S. foreign policy. For instance, until the Nixon shocks, Japan did not recognize the PRC. In order to compensate for the loss of mainland China as a source of raw material and as a market for Japanese products, Japan turned its face towards U.S.-friendly Southeast Asia. In the words of Pharr, by playing a complementary role to the United States in preventing the rise of communism, "Japan received license to rebuild its economic strength in Southeast Asia.“38
As discussed above, Yoshida considered strong relations with East Asia, particularly China, to be essential for Japan's economic interests. As Welfield notes, in the prewar period, Yoshida had believed that Japan's national interests required the creation of an extensive, Western-style empire in Asia comprised of Korea, Manchuria, and Mongolia. In his opinion, the support of the United States was absolutely important for expansion of the Japanese sphere of interest in Asia.39 In contrast to the pan-Asianist
line of thinking in prewar era, Yoshida had doubted that Japanese ambitions in Asia could be realized in opposition to the British and Americans: "Yoshida had therefore considered that Japan should go about building its Asiatic empire in a way that would not offend the Anglo-Saxons.“40 In this regard, unlike those of Shidehara who was largely viewed as more genuinely liberal, Yoshida's Anglophile views were instrumental. Yoshida himself acknowledged that he belonged to "the clique that makes use of Britain and the United States.“41 In this regard, while supporting normalization of relations with Beijing, he nevertheless acquiesced to the U.S. demands. After concluding the peace treaty with the United States, Yoshida was very much interested in developing diplomatic relations with China. In an opinion piece he wrote for Foreign Affairs magazine, Yoshida asserted that "Red or white, China remains our next door neighbor. Geography and economic laws will, I believe, prevail in the long-run over any ideological differences and artificial trade barriers.“42 He tried to convince the Americans to try to detach China from its alliance with the Soviet Union. However, he failed to do so, particularly in the context of the Korean War. Eventually Yoshida gave up his hope of convincing Americans about China. In the famous "Yoshida Letter" addressed to Dulles, written by Dulles himself,43 Yoshida promised that Japan was completely in tune with U.s. policy regarding the question of China: "I can assure you that the Japanese government has no intention of concluding a bilateral treaty with the Communist regime in China.“44 Thus, under pressure from the United States, Japan recognized the Chiang Kai-Shek regime in Taiwan and signed a peace treaty with Taiwan in April 1952. Until Japan recognized mainland China, it had to deal with the reality of "two Chinas." However, Japan's position on this issue was very different from that of the United States. Japan's China policy had to be made under the shadow of history. As Yoshida maintained, "because of the history of Japanese expansion into Asia where aggression and colonization proceeded side by side, Japan lost its legitimacy as an independent strategic player, encouraging it to see its relations with China and Taiwan in fundamentally non-strategic ways.“45 Kishi Nobusuke, on the other hand, pursued an extremely anticommunist foreign policy. As a young and aspiring economist in the prewar years, he had been an admirer of Asianist and national socialist philosopher Kita Ikki. Under Kita's influence, Kishi thought "Japan's historic mission was to defend East Asia from those two most nefarious manifestations of twentieth century Western civilization, Russian Bolshevism, and Anglo-American capitalism.“46 However, as prime minister in the postwar era, he emerged as a realist. His options were severely restricted by the Cold War system and the necessity of the alliance with the United States. Within these constraints, he focused on noncommunist Southeast Asia rather than China. As a staunch anticommunist, he was hostile to warm relations with the Soviet Union and China. Synchronizing Japan's foreign policy fully with that of the United States, Kishi believed that "Japan had no alternative-to active participation in an economically integrated politico-strategic alliance with the United States and the countries of non-Communist Asia.“ 47
In the period after World War II, Kishi became the first Japanese prime minister to visit the noncommunist Southeast Asian countries and went as far ahead as proposing a "Southeast Asian Development Fund." Yoshida had criticized the idea of foreign aid and reparations arguing that "you have to trade with rich men; you can't trade with beggars.“48 Kishi, however, had a different opinion. He saw reparations as a useful means of entering Southeast Asian markets. He referred to the language in the various peace treaties allowing reparations to be paid "in the form of capital and consumer goods produced by the Japanese industries and serviced by the Japanese people." This way he was able to provide Japanese industries access to markets, and of course industrialists had been his close political allies since the prewar era. For instance, in a case that was the most controversial, Kinoshita Trading Company was given a contract to provide ships to the Sukarno government in Indonesia. The company's owner Kinoshita Shigeru was a metals broker in Manchuria before the war, where he had built his ties with Kishi. Such ties continued even after their return to Japan in the late 1930s. After the war, Kishi had worked for this company as its president after his release from prison, before he was de purged and allowed to return to politics.49 Kishi negotiated reparations agreements with Burma, Thailand, the Philippines, Indonesia, and Cambodia. As noted by Samuels, Kishi's use of Southeast Asian and Korean aid seems to have insuired Prime Minister Tanaka Kakuei who exuanded reparations to China and Prime Minister Nakasone Yasuhiro who applied it to other parts of the region. 50 The bulk of the reparations payment, which totaled $1,152 million in damages and $737 million in loans, was in the form ofnonrepayable economic and technical cooperation, thus enabling Japan to develop markets of its own in Asia.51
However, due to his strong anticommunism and despite his dislike for private property, Kishi firmly opposed to any normalization of relations with China. He gave first priority to relations with the United States and with the U.S. backing on Japan's relations with Southeast Asia. He did not see any contradiction with his previous anti-American and pan-Asianist views. As Welfield explains:[Kishi believed that] the United States, as the dominant Western power, was Japan's logical choice for an alliance partner, the security treaty the natural successor to the Anglo-Japanese relationship and the Tripartite Pact. Provided the American-Soviet Cold War continued unabated, a reconstructed Japan might eventually be able to establish itself as the residuary legatee of the Pax Americana, in much the same way as the Anglo-German conflicts during the first part of the twentieth century had facilitated its emergence as the heir to the British Empire in the Far East. Kishi's strong and continuing interest in conservative pan-Asianism is probably to be interpreted in this context. 52
Yet Kishi failed to convince both Southeast Asians and the Japanese public about his scheme for economic cooperation with Southeast Asia.53 Kishi encountered huge protests in his visits to Southeast Asia, and his way of handling domestic opposition against renewal of the U.S.-Japan security treaty made him a controversial and highly disliked politician at home. Nevertheless, he had a massive and long-lasting impact in Japanese politics. Although anti-Western pan-Asianism did not return to Japan, he was able to combine pro-Western (pro-U.S.) and Asianist approaches.
Japanese Foreign Policy after Yoshida and Kishi
Departure of Kishi and Yoshida from Japanese politics did not mean the end of their influence. As a matter of fact, Japanese politics from this time on functioned in practice as a battle between students of Kishi and Yoshida. between the nationalist and the liberal conservative fractions within the LDP. Both groups competed with each other under the LDP's faction system. The foreign policy of Japan during this time was highly influenced by the factional identity of the prime ministers. Under Yoshida and his students, Japan pursued a course of economic development in order to achieve great power status. The Yoshida Doctrine, which demanded minimal military commitment in order to maximize economic development, was the basis of this strategy. Kishi's students, however, sought to give back to Japan its political and military role, utilizing its alliance with the United States who was just as willing as them to do the same. However, because of the dominance of the Yoshida School, Kishi's influence was confined to the background. Kishi was replaced by Ikeda Hayato, who was a disciple of Yoshida. With this change, Yoshida line was back in power. Ikeda served as prime minister between 1960 and 1964. Perfectly applying his master's foreign policy doctrine, Ikeda fulfilled his bold promise of doubling Japan's national income by the end of 1960s in half of that time. The economic success alone ensured that the LDP would be in power for much of the postwar era. This success also ensured that the Yoshida Doctrine became Japan's primary ideology of the Japanese state and Japan's national consensus. After the resignation of Ikeda in 1964, Kishi's younger brother Eisaku Satd came to power. Despite being Kishi's brother, Sato was politically and ideologically close to the Yoshida line. He followed Ikeda's policies stressing economic growth and resisting militarization. His foreign policy record included most importantly reversion of Okinawa to Japanese sovereignty from the American control in 1972. In effect, the island was a military colony of the United States, even after Japan's formal independence. Mainland Japanese citizens could travel to Okinawa but Okinawans needed to obtain a special visa in order to travel to the rest of Japan. In exchange of reversion of sovereignty, Sata agreed that the American military bases could stay on the island. This decision was not accepted by many Okinawans who opposed both the American bases and the reversion to Japan. The problem remains unsolved.
In addition, in 1967, Sata enunciated his famous Three Non-Nuclear Principles, that include the ban on the possession, transit, and stationing of nuclear weapons in Japan. These principles that were eventually approved by the Diet on November 24, 1971, have shaped Japan's nuclear stance until this day. These principles stated that Japan would not manufacture or possess nuclear weapons and would not allow their movement into the country. Japan would rely on nuclear deterrence offered by the United States. Its security provided by the United States, Japan could become an economic power without a commensurate military dimension. In order to convince the United States to extend its nuclear protection to Japan, Sata initially appeared to be interested in gaining Japanese nuclear capacity. Yet it is now believed that he bluffed his way through to get the U.S. promise of nuclear protection for Japan.54 Sata's approach to foreign policy was based on the notion that historically "whenever Japan took a path counter to the United States it suffered; and whenever the two countries worked together closely, Japan prospered.“55 In 1974, Sata received the Nobel Peace Prize for his efforts against nuclear weapons and signing the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. An important challenge for both the Ikeda and the Sata governments was the Vietnam War which proved to be a hard case for Yoshida's students. The Ikeda government introduced geographic limitation on the scope of the alliance with the United States in order to avoid involvement in the Vietnam War. However, rapid economic development in Japan encouraged calls for building a parallel military might. The ambitious Defense Agency Director General and the future Prime Minister Nakasone Yasuhiro mobilized support in the Diet to double Japanese military spending with a new five-year defense plan (the fourth plan or Nakasone Plan) in 1970. In this, the Japanese Defense Agency departed trom the pattern of incremental build-up established under the first three defense build-up plans and asked for a major expansion of Japan's defense capabilities, particularly its maritime power. The plan stipulated that the Japanese Self Defense Forces should be able to cope independently with "limited, direct aggression" by securing air and sea control around the country. It called for a doubling of the Japanese fleet from 142,000 to 320,000 tons within a decade with a provisional budget estimated at between 5.7 and 6.5 trillion yen. 56
Sato's popularity suffered significantly trom the decision taken by Nixon to visit China, a decision that caught the Japanese government totally unprepared, Sato's U.S. centric Japanese foreign policy suffered a major shock when it was announced that U.S. National Security Advisor Henry Kissinger would visit Beijing to convey to the Chinese the intention of President Nixon to visit China. Nixon eventually visited China in February 21,1972, with a move that shocked the Japanese who closely followed the American lead in making Japanese policy regarding China. For many years, the Japanese had isolated themselves from Beijing and recognized Taiwan because the United States told them to do so. However, the Nixon administration did not consult Japan about its plans to recognize the Communist regime. It was a major shock, which apparently helped Tanaka Kakuei's ascent to power. In the atmosphere following the Nixon shock, Japanese public opinion turned decidedly in favor of relations with China and strong anti American feelings emerged. In turn, Sato cabinet was discredited, as was Sato's preferred candidate for prime minister position, Fukuda. Tanaka, on the other hand, was known for his willingness to develop close relations with the Chinese and maintain a distance from the United States. He was a reform-minded politician, and unlike other politicians before and after him, he lacked powerful roots in the Japanese political establishment. He did not belong to the traditional Tokyo political elite, most of whom had their strong family backgrounds dating back to the Meiji period and had studied at Tokyo [Imperial] University. In fact, Tanaka did not have an education beyond the primary school and thus was regarded as an underdog and impossible candidate for the position of prime minister. He was originally from Niigata prefecture in northwestern Japan, a historically isolated part of the country in both geographical and political senses. He moved to Tokyo as a teenager and formed a construction firm, which became successful during the Second World War, and his business connections helped his eventual rise in politics.
In 1972, Tanaka became prime minister in the context of international financial crisis precipitated by the decision of Nixon to cancel the U.S. dollar's gold convertibility and Nixon's visit to China (two Nixon shocks). Due to Tanaka's appearance as a reform minded leader both in domestic and international politics, these shocks were helpful for him. He pursued the normalization of diplomatic relations with Beijing and achieved doing so in September 1972. Japan announced that it understood and respected the Chinese position on Taiwan and, in turn, China waived demands for reparations for wartime atrocities. Tanaka resigned from his post as a result of a corruption scandal that involved the sale of aircraft by Lockheed Corp. in 1974. Yet he continued to be an influential figure within the LDP ranks.
Nakasone Yasuhiro, who was a navy officer during the Second World War, entered the Diet as a member of House of Representatives in 1946. He served as Minister of Science in 1959 under the Kishi government. Later, he was Minister of Transport, served as Director General of JDA in 1970, Minister of International Trade and Industry in 1972, and Minister of Administration in 1981. Eventually, he became prime minister in 1982 and remained in power until 1987. Even after this date, Nakasone exerted influence over Japanese politics as a regular member of Diet until he was finally excluded from the candidate list by Koizumi in 2003 as a part ofKoizumi's attack on the LOP old guard. Nakasone was a skilled politician of the caliber of Yoshida, Kishi, and Tanaka. As for his factional membership, Nakasone was a member ofKono faction in the 1960s. Kono Ichiro (1898-), chief of the faction, was truly a pan-Asianist. He thoughtthat Japan's future lay not with the United States but with an independent Asian community comprised of developing noncommunist nations. 57 Kono never had a chance to become prime minister, but his lieutenant Nakasone did. Nakasone's rise in politics was also made possible by his close link with the "retired Emperor" Tanaka who continued to exert influence over Japanese politics long after his resignation in 1974. Tanaka's influence over Nakasone was so deep that his cabinet was called "Takas one cabinet." Nakasone's election in 1983 as LOP president and Japan's prime minister coincided with the rise of nationalism in Japan. In November 17, 1984, Asahi Shimbun reported that a majority of Japanese believed themselves as superior to Westerners. The percentage of people who believed so was only 20 percent in 1953.58 This was probably an effect of the Japanese economic development record and the resulting sense of self confidence. This new rise of Japanese national pride was expressed among other ways through Nihonjinron (theory of Japaneseness) discourse, which emphasized Japan's positive distinctiveness and difference from the rest of the world. The historical context in which nationalist discourse had reemerged in Japan have to be examined in order to fully appreciate the urgency of the question of national identity. Nihonjinron was a reincarnation of the kokusuishugi school in the nineteenth century which put emphasis on Japan's distinctive cultural characteristics. During the 1930s when Japan was confronting the West this ideology was expressed by philosophers associated with the Kyoto School. Japan's defeat and its subsequent occupation by the United States led to a defeatist culture. However, Japan's phenomenal success in economic development reinforced feelings of national superiority while failing to completely fill the vacuum. As noted by Nakamura Masanori, "the grand tale of Japan as an economic superpower and the world's most stable political system has already lost its power of persuasion over Japanese citizens.“59 A cuituralist interpretation of Japanese identity was an acceptable form of nationalism in the postwar era. In a way, with Nihonjinron literature, the Japanese began to discuss what it meant to be Japanese. The basic argument was that Japanese culture and people are seeking for an identity that could express the Japanese self against the Western Other to which it was tied so strongly since the Meiji and then once again since the Second World War. As discussed by Befu: The popularity of Nihonjinron in postwar Japan is a consequence of Japan's inability to exploit effectively the most important symbols which express national identity and nationalism. By these symbols, I refer to the imperial institution, the 'national' flag, the 'national' anthem, the 'national' emblem, and national monuments and rituals.60
As Iida argues: while nihonjinron was initially motivated by Japanese curiosity about themselves, it became increasingly infused with bitterness and ftustration as American Japan-bashing gathered momentum, and eventually developed into a breeding ground for narcissistic and exclusionary nationalist voices. It was on this ground that historical revisionist claims began to emerge denying the fact of Japan's W orId War II invasion of Asia. These contrary cultural inclinations of 'postmodernism' and nihonjinron together constituted a bifurcated manifestation of the troubled state of Japanese modernity in the 1980s.61 The end of the Cold War provided another impetus for the emergence of the identity question. One of the most influential nationalist works, Japan That Can Say No (No to Ieru Nippon) by Ishihara Shintaro and Morita Akio appeared in 1989 and sold over two million copies. In this work, the authors called for a more assertive Japanese foreign policy.62 Interestingly Morita, then chairman of Sony, was the coauthor; he distanced himself from the book and would not allow his part to be translated into English due to its bad reputation in the United States.63 Nakasone's tenure as prime minister (1982-1987), in a similar way as Turkish Prime Minister and later President Turgut Ozal (1983-1992) coincided with the last decade of the Cold War system and both of them had to respond to the pressing question of how to define an identity for their nation that could respond to the challenges of the post-Cold War era. Nakasone was the only prime minister in the postwar Japan who had had a prewar military career and also served after the war as director general of IDA. Among his critics. there were fears that Nakasone intended to end the Yoshida Doctrine. Eliminate postwar barriers to militarism, such as the Article 9 of Japanese Constitution, the threenuclear-principles of Sata, and the ceiling on defense expenditures of 1 percent of GNP established in 1976. These fears were sometimes provoked by Nakasone himself who repeatedly stated that he would like to bring about a "general settling of accollits concerning postwar politics.“64
Nakasone's discourse and policies occasionally provoked fierce response in other countries. His comments on racial diversity in the United States were particularly provocative. He stated that Japan's economic success was because it did not have ethnic minorities like the United States. He then clarified his point: he meant to congratulate the United States on its economic achievements despite the presence of "problematic" ethnic groups. Nakasone thought that it was necessary to give Japan a political identity in international relations and a global vision. Unlike the members of the Yoshida School, Nakasone believed that economic progress did not solve the postwar identity crisis: A large number of Japanese today have a feeling that the nation is plWlging more deeply into a period of crisis and confusion such as ha~ never been experienced before... . There is worry as to what is going to happen to Japan, an Wleasy sense that perhaps the nation has already reached an impasse, that growth may be over, and decline imminent.65
For him Japan's identity question could be addressed by replacing the "Yoshida Doctrine" with a "new liberal nationalism" through identity transformation or a "transformation of national consciousness.,,66 He advocated the internationalization (kokusaika) of Japan, which in practice meant Japan's assuming a global role with an activist agenda both in Asia and internationally. The Yoshida Doctrine was not the answer for Japan's search for identity. Nakasone declared kokusaika as his doctrine by announcing Japan as kokusai kokka Nihon (Japan as international nation) during his address to the Japanese Parliament in 1984. He stated that Japan's peace and prosperity could not exist without world peace in a deeply independent international society and therefore Japan should become international due to its rising status in international society and growing expectations of other countries toward it. In other words, as Mayumi Itoh suggests, kokusaika implied that Japan should playa more active global role commensurate with its economic power.67
Many critics of Nakasone did not share the interpretation that he embraced nationalism as a liberal and cosmopolitan ideal.68 For these critics, kokusaika did not imply Japan's opening itselfto international cultures but rather making Japanese culture international. As Ivy claims, "instead of opening up Japan to the struggle of different nationalities and ethnicities, the policy of internationalization implies the opposite: the thorough domestication of the foreign and the dissemination of Japanese culture throughout the world.“69 Similarly Kazukimi Ebuchi observes that "to internationalize" is used by most Japanese dictionaries as a passive verb, indicating the process of becoming accepted by the rest of the world (sekai ni tsuyo suru yo ni naru koto), while it is used in English as a transitive verb.70 In contrast to kindaika (modernization), which was Japan's ideology during the Meiji era and then much of the postwar period under Yoshida Doctrine, kokusaika reflected a desire to build self-confidence in Japan's relations with the world. In this sense, there was no contradiction between nationalism and internationalism. Japan could internationalize only to the extent that it gained a self confidence and an identity. In Nakasone's formulation this new ideology, kokusaika, had three major dimensions:
1. A renewed national pride in Japan's culture and history.
2. An international economic and political role for Japan.
3. Opening of Japan to the world and the world to Japan through cultural and educational programs. 71
The first component was a direct challenge to the "shame" culture in Japan that had become prevalent following the Second World War. Nakasone's visit to the Yasukuni Shrine in 1985 was designed to build a renewed confidence and pride in Japan's history. The shrine is controversial partly due to its honoring fourteen executed Class-A war criminals as indicted by the International War Tribunal. Ironically the shrine was once regarded to be the symbol of modernism and egalitarianism during the Meiji era Samurai soldiers. In the postwar era, it was the symbol of right-wing nationalism. Right-wing nationalists consider the shrine to be the symbol of Japan's historical identity. Although other prime ministers in the postwar era had visited the shrine, Nakasone was the first to do it in his official capacity. The visit was interpreted by his domestic critics as an attempt to cast Japan's wartime era in a favorable light. China and Korea issued strongly-worded protests against Nakasone, after which he did not repeat his visits. No Japanese prime minister repeated the visit in his official capacity until Koizumi. Nakasone paid his visit to the shrine in the face of strong demands from the families of war casualties as well as because of his personal experience in the Second World War as a naval commander who lost people under his command.72
The second component required a more active diplomacy and reversion of the Yoshida Doctrine, which minimized any international political role and required dogmatic adherence to Japan's war-denouncing constitution. Nakasone attempted to scrap the 1 percent limit on defense spending in the 1986 budget but this attempt failed in the face of strong opposition within the LDP. Again there was strong American pressure on Japan to scrap this ceiling. 73 Nakasone came to embrace the idea that Japan was an Asian power. He built strong relations with the ASEAN countries which he visited in 1983. In contrast to his predecessors who preferred bilateral relations with Southeast Asian nations. Nakasone discussed multilateral issues with ASEAN leaders and attempted to project an Asian voice in May 1983 at the Williamsburg economic summit meeting.74 In a speech in Kuala Lumpur in May 9, 1983, Nakasone stated that there would be "no prosperity for Japan without prosperity for the ASEAN countries" and that Japan's policy of economic cooperation with ASEAN would be given top priority. He pledged yen credits of 67.5 billion to Indonesia, 67.36 billion to Thailand, 65.05 billion to the Philippines, as well as 61 billion to Malaysia, which was announced during former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Muhammed's visit to Japan in January.75 As these credits were denominated in yen, it was an attempt to create a yen block in Southeast Asia. More interestingly, Nakasone proposed "Friendship Programme towards the Twenty-First Century," which was aimed at inviting over three thousand young Asians to Japan over a span of five years. Under this program, Japan invited Asian delegations with the aim of forming a close link with the Japanese younger generation. 76
Benefiting from the U.S. position against the expansion of Soviet influence in Asia, he utilized foreign aid as a tool to expand Japanese interests. He sought to increase military spending and Japan's participation in international institutions. However, his approach to the United States was basically similar to Kishi. Together with his foreign minister, Abe Shintaro, son-in-law of Kishi and father of Abe Shinzo, Nakasone realigned Japanese foreign policy more closely with the United States. In this regard, Nakasone did not deviate ITom the conventional postwar Japanese foreign policy. However, he was a sharp critic of Yoshida Doctrine that called for minimal military and political role. Nakasone, on the other hand, followed Kishi's steps in attempting to utilize the U.S. alliance system in order to project a greater Japanese political and military role in world politics. Although most attempts by Nakasone to scrap the Yoshida Doctrine failed in the face of opposition within his own party, he managed to bring the identity question back to the agenda. Nakasone foresaw in the 1980s that Japan's low-profile international political role despite high-profile international economic role would not meet the demands imposed by a changing world order. His calls for a new search for identity influenced a new generation of politicians who firmly believed in the concept of "normal power" ifutsu no 'ami). The new international system that came to replaced the Cold War era would require political commitments from Japan. The new challenges, most precisely the Gulf War of 1991 confirmed their ideas.
The Gulf War of 1991: The Collapse of the Yoshida Doctrine
The Gulf War was Japan's first major test in the post-Cold War era. The United States actively called on Japan to contribute militarily to the UN coalition that fought the Gulf War. However, Japan's choice was to stay away from the conflict. Japan pledged $16 billion on pressures by the United States but did not mobilize its Self Defense Forces for active duty. Prime Minister Kaifu conducted an extremely low-profile diplomacy.Particularly controversial was the cancellation of his visit to the Middle East before the war, fearing that he "could offend Iraq" and endanger the lives of Japanese citizens trapped in Iraq and Kuwait, a move which was criticized both by Japanese and American officials. Although Japan moved to a more active position by sending four minesweepers to the Gulf following the war, it gained almost no attention.Japan's financial contribution to the Gulf War covered a substantial part of its total cost to the United States, calculated to be $61 billion by the U.S. Congress.77 Despite this, Japan's contribution was neglected both by the United States and perhaps more importantly by the oil-rich countries of the Gulf. Many in Japan were shocked to see their country having been excluded from the list of countries to which Kuwait sent "thank you" letters. American officials and public opinion as well expressed anxiety about the ability of the Japanese government in responding to international crises beyond Japan's own political, legal, and financial restraints.78 Michael Armacost, a former U.S. ambassador to Japan, argued: "During the Cold War, the U.S. took care of issues that came up on the horizon, while Japan took care of raising the level of financial support to US forces in Japan. The Gulf War was traumatic. Japan found that it could no longer ignore the new international issues that had emerged after the Cold War.“79 A Japanese foreign ministry official comments that "In terms of how traumatic and formative an experience it was, the Gulf war was the Vietnam for Japanese diplomats,"80 Japan's policy in the Gulf War was in striking contrast to its later decision to deploy Japanese troops in Iraq, even though the Gulf War was a United Nations effort and enjoyed full international legality and legitimacy. What explains this difference?
As Inoguchi explains, three major factors shaped Japan's policy during this crisis: (1) uncertainty and anxiety, (2) historical learning, and (3) self-confidence.81 The first two are important for my purpose. The following is largely summarized :trom Inoguchi unless noted. Japan could not easily adapt to the new international system in which there was no superpower rivalry. During the Cold War, Japan's foreign policy was centered around its alliance with the United States, which decreased in importance after the Cold War. Its territorial disputes with the Soviet Union remained as well as Soviet nuclear capabilities in the Pacific remained. This made Japan particularly uneasy about the post-Cold War international system. Furthermore, the premature decline of the United States was undesired for Japan, because there was no other country to take up the leadership in maintaining the stability ofthe international political and economic system. Meanwhile, Japanese public opinion remained consistently in favor of a strictly economic role for Japan. More than two thirds of those surveyed in Japan in different polls believed that the Japanese contributions to the global community should be restricted to a nonmilitary rolein conformity with its pacifist constitution. The public believed that Japan had to focus on commercial activities and seek to make its contributions to the global community in financial, technological, and scientific fields. (In other words, Japanese public opinion remained firmly supportive of the Yoshida Doctrine.)
Furthermore Japanese political culture, as a reflection of its history, was skeptical of its ability to mobilize military power in foreign terrain. Japan had failed miserably in its attempt to obtain for itself a place in world politics through the use of military force. In contrast, the focus on economic development since 1945 had been successful in bringing about peace and prosperity. The legacy of history was also linked to Asian suspicions about the resurgence of Japanese military ambitions. The mobilization ofSDF in international operations would only fuel such suspicions because of the memory of the past. Japan also used this argument to eschew any military contribution in its alliance with the United States in order to maintain the Yoshida doctrine. "The debt of history has operated as a constraint on Japanese diplomacy. Whether Japan is constrained happily or unhappily is somewhat difficult to tell.“82
But also, since Japan had countered the previous oil shocks through diplomacy and confidence in its economic competitiveness, it was not convinced that it really had to mobilize troops and be more involved in the crisis in order to avoid significant economic consequences. The Gulf War left a lasting legacy on the mentality of Japanese foreign policy makers and became a useful analogy for those who were calling for Japan's return to normal power status. The Gulf War behavior of Japan was clearly influenced by the Yoshida Doctrine that had worked well during the Cold War. It became clear, however, that the same policy line did not sit easily in an international system where U.S. expectations of Japan had changed. As Eugene Brown asserts:The first major crisis of the post-Cold War era thus left Japan smarting over what it saw as the world's lack of understanding of its efforts. For a nation chronically anxious about what the rest of the world thinks of it, the experience was a singularly painful and bitter one. The Gulf crisis marked a major turning point in Japan's relations with the outside world. Its most immediate legacy was to intensify the debate among Japanese o~inion leaders and policy elites over the nation's appropriate international role. 3
Japan was a defeated country after the war. It came under U.S. occupation. The u.s. occupation government under General MacArthur initially sought to destroy Japan's remaining economic and military power base. The goal was to make sure that Japan would not emerge again as a threat. The United States brought members of the old liberal elite including Shidehara and Yoshida to positions of importance. These liberals disliked the old military regime and defended the view that Japan should concentrate on economic development with minimal security role by relying on the United States. This strategic logic, known as Yoshida Doctrine, agreed with the terms of occupation. However, inception of the Cold War soon changed the opinion of the United States towards Japan. The United States now saw that a weak Japan was a liability in a region dominated by the Sino-Soviet alliance. Instead, a stronger Japan as an ally of the United States could create a balance. Soon a second stage of American occupation started the "reverse course." Liberals, most notably Yoshida, did not like this change of policy and resisted the idea of remilitarization of Japan. Hence the United States turned its face to members of Japan's prewar political elite, including Kishi who was virtually taken out of prison despite his status as a Class- A war criminal. The entire purging as well as the war crimes trial process after the execution of fourteen Class-A war criminals was ended. The United States sponsored unification ofliberal and right-wing conservatives under one party, the LDP. However, this created two rival factions within the same party, Yoshida and Kishi factions. and led to the emergence of faction system within the LDP. In 1957, Kishi became prime minister. In 1960, he revised the security treaty with the United States and resigned following protests against his undemocratic manners of passing the revised treaty in the Diet. With his resignation, Yoshida's disciples returned to power and continued to rule the country for much of the Cold War period. Yet, despite his brief political tenure, Kishi continued to exert a great deal of influence behind scenes. Nakasone followed Kishi's steps to trying to utilize the U.S. alliance instrumentally in order to return Japan to a prestige of great power. Nakasone called for the end to the Yoshida Doctrine and returning to a normal power status with a military and political power commensurate with its global economic role. Nakasone saw that Yoshida Doctrine failed to provide the Japanese nation with a strong national identity. As a result. much of Nakasone's efforts to scraD the Yoshida Doctrine failed. but he succeeded in bringing the issue of Japanese national identity back to the agenda.
The Gulf War in 1991 gave further support to those Japanese who shared Nakasone's concerns. Japan could not send troops to the war but instead covered a substantial part of its cost. However, it received the treatment of a country who basically did not raise a finger for the liberation of Kuwait. After the war, when the Emir of Kuwait sent letters of appreciation to countries who contributed to the war, Japan was excluded. As the Japanese valued relations with the Gulf countries because of its oil dependence on the region, this was a shocking incident. Kishi's students in Japanese politics would capitalize on this traumatic incident in order to campaign for a return to normal power status.
1 John W. Dower, Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II, 1st ed. (New York: W.W. Norton & Co, 1999).
2 Thomas U. Berger, "Alliance Politics and Japan's Postwar Culture of Antimilitarism," in The u.s.-Japan Alliance: Past, Present, and Future, ed. Michael J. Green and Patrick M. Cronin (New York: Council on Foreign Relations Press, 1999), 193.
3 John Dower, "The U.S.-Japan Military Relationship," in Postwar Japan, 1945 to the Present, ed. Jon Livingston, Joe Moore, and Felicia Oldfather (New York: Pantheon Books, 1973),232.
4 Note that "SCAP" has been used to refer not only to the entire occupation authority but also to the commander of the occupation authorities, General Douglas MacArthur. In this text, SCAP is used to designate the Occupation authority.
5 Dower, Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II, 530. Also see T. A. Bisson, Zaibatsu Dissolution in Japan (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1954).
6 Dower, "The U.S.-Japan Military Relationship," 3.
7 Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War II, 324.
8 Ibid., 325.
9 Ibid., 327.
10 Shigeru Yoshida, The Yoshida Memoirs: The Story of Japan in Crisis (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1962),50-51.
11 Dower, Embracing Defeat: Japan in the Wake of World War 11,344.
12 Herbert P. Bix, "Inventing The "Symbol Monarchy" In Japan, 1945-52," Journal of Japanese Studies 21, no. 2 (1995): 329.
13 Ibid., 330.
14 Ian Hill Nish, Japanese Foreign Policy in the Interwar Period (Westport: Praeger, 2002), 72.
15 John W. Dower, Empire and Aftermath: Yoshida Shigeru and the Japanese Experience, 1878-1954 (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1979), 312
16 Yoshida, The Yoshida Memoirs: The Story of Japan in Crisis, 7.
17 Ibid., 8.
18 Iriye, Japan and the Wider World: From the Mid-Nineteenth Century to the Present, 104.
19 quoted in Dale M. Hellegers, We, the Japanese People: World War II and the Origins of the Japanese Constitution (Stanford: Stanford University Press, 2001),577.
20 Igarashi Takeshi, "Peace-Making and Party Politics: The Fonnation of the Domestic Foreign-Policy System in Postwar Japan," Journal of Japanese Studies 11, no. 2 (1985): 324.
21 Kenneth B. Pyle, "In Pursuit of a Grand Design: Nakasone Betwixt the Past and the Future," Journal of Japanese Studies 13, no. 2, Special Issue: A Forum on the Trade Crisis (1987): 246.
22 Ibid., 247.
23 Robert Gilpin, "The Global Context," in The United States and Japan in the Postwar World, ed. Akira Iriye and Warren I. Cohen (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1989), 6.
25 Michael M. Yoshitsu, Japan and the San Francisco Peace Settlement (New York: Columbia University Press, 1983),51.
26 Ibid., 52.
27 Chihiro Hosoya, "From the Yoshida Letter to the Nixon Shock," in The United States and Japan in the Postwar World, ed. Akira Iriye and Warren I. Cohen (Lexington: The University of Kentucky, 1989), 24.
28 Glenn D. Hook, Japan's International Relations Politics, Economics, and Security, Sheffield Centre for Japanese StudieslRoutledge Series (London: Routledge, 2001), 158.
29 Yumiko Iida, Rethinking Identity in Modern Japan, Nationalism as Aesthetics (London: Routledge, 2002), 88-92.
30 Quoted in Hook, Japan's International Relations Politics, Economics, and Security, 9.
31 Richard 1. Samuels, Machiavelli's Children: Leaders and Their Legacies in Italy and Japan (Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2003).
32 Nobuo Tomita, Akira Nakamura, and Ronald J. Hrebenar, "The Liberal Democratic Party: The Ruling Party of Japan," in The Japanese Party System, ed. Ronald J. Hrebenar (Boulder: Westview Press, 1992),252.
33 Sharon H. Nolte, Liberalism in Modern Japan: Ishibashi Tanzan and His Teachers, 1905-1960 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 1986), 240-41.
34 Michael Schaller, "America's Favorite War Criminal: Kishi Nobusuke and the Transformation of US-Japan Relations" (Japan Policy Research Institute Working Paper, July 1995).
35 Sterling Seagrave and Peggy Seagrave, Gold Warriors: America's Secret Recovery of Yamashita's Gold (London: Verso, 2003),121-22.
36 For details on these events, see George R. Packard, Protest in Tokyo; the Security Treaty Crisis of 1960 (Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1966).
37 Tatsumi Shimada, "Free Press Gone Wrong?," Japan Quarterly 7, no. 4 (1960) Also see Packard, Protest in Tokyo; the Security Treaty Crisis of 1960, 278ff.
38 Susan 1. Pharr, "Japan's Defensive Foreign Policy and the Politics of Burden Sharing," in Japan's Foreign Policy after the Cold War Coping with Change, ed. Gerald L. Curtis, Studies of the East Asian Institute (Armonk, N.Y: M.E. Sharpe, 1993),240.
39 Dower, Empire and Aftermath: Yoshida Shigeru and the Japanese Experience, 18781954,5-6.
40 Welfield, An Empire in Eclipse: Japan in the Postwar American Alliance System, a Study in the Interaction of Domestic Politics and Foreign Policy, 39.
41 Dower, Empire and Aftermath: Yoshida Shigeru and the Japanese Experience, 18781954, 6.
42 Shigeru Yoshida, "Japan and the Crisis in Asia," Foreign Affairs, no. 29 (1951): 179.
43 Soeya Y oshihide, "Taiwan in Japan's Security Considerations," in Taiwan in the Twentieth Century: A Retrospective View, ed. Richard L. Edmonds and Steven M. Goldstein (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2001), 135.
44 Shigeru Yoshida, "Yoshida's Letter to Dulles," Far Eastern Survey 21, no. 4 (1952): 38-39.
45 Yoshihide, "Taiwan in Japan's Security Considerations," 131.
46 Welfield, An Empire in Eclipse: Japan in the Postwar American Alliance System, a Study in the Interaction of Domestic Politics and Foreign Policy, 118.
47 Ibid., 121.
48 Richard J. Samuels, "Kishi and Corruption: An ATIatomy of the 1955 System," (Japan Policy Research Institute Working Paper, December 2001).
51 Sueo Sudo, The International Relations of Japan and South East Asia Forging a New Regionalism, Nissan InstitutelRoutledge Japanese Studies Series (London: Routledge, 2002), 2.
52 Welfield, An Empire in Eclipse: Japan in the Postwar American Alliance System, a Study in the Interaction of Domestic Politics and Foreign Policy, 122.
53 Morris, "Foreign Policy Issues in Japan's 1958 Elections," Pacific Affairs 31, no. 3 (1958): 236.
54 "Former PM bluffed on Japanese nukes," Mainichi Shimbun, August 6, 1999.
55 Ian Bururna, Inventing Japan, 1853-1964 (New York: Modem Library, 2003),167.
56 Euan Graham, Japan's Sea Lane Security, 1940-2004: A Matter of Life and Death? (London: Routledge, 2006), 103.
57 Welfield, An Empire in Eclipse: Japan in the Postwar American Alliance System, a Study in the Interaction of Domestic Politics and Foreign Policy, 133.
58 Pyle, "In Pursuit ofa Grand Design: Nakasone Betwixt the Past and the Future," 251.
59 Masanori Nakamura, "The History Textbook Controversy and Nationalism," Bulletin of Concerned Asian Scholars 30, no. 2 (1998): 28, quoted by Julia A. Thomas, "Photography, National Identity, and the 'Cataract of Times': Wartime Images and the Case of Japan," American Historical Review 103, no. 5 (1998): 1477.
60 Harumi Befu, "Symbols of Nationalism and Nihonjinron," in Ideology and Practice in Modern Japan, ed. Roger Goodman and Kirsten Refsing (London: Routledge, 1992),27.
61 Iida, Rethinking Identity in Modern Japan, Nationalism as Aesthetics, 8.
62 Akio Morita and Shintaro Ishihara, "No" To Ieru Nippon: Shin Nichi-Bei Kankei No Kado (Tokyo: Kobunsha, 1989).
63 Paul Blamire, review of The Japan That Can Say No (No to Ieru Nippon) by Akio. Morita and Shintaro Ishihara, International Affairs 66, no. 3 (1990): 637.
64 Chalmers Johnson, "Reflections on the Dilemma of Japanese Defense," Asian Survey 26, no. 5 (1986): 558.
65 Nakasone, quoted by Stephen S. Large, Emperor Hirohito and Showa Japan: A Political Biography (London: Routledge, 1992), 194.
67 Itoh, Globalization of Japan: Japanese Sakoku Mentality and Us. Efforts to Open Japan, 6.
68 Pyle, "In Pursuit ofa Grand Design: Nakasone betwixt the Past and the Future," 261.
69 Marilyn Ivy, Discourses of the Vanishing: Modernity, Phantasm, Japan (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1995),3.
70 Kazukumi Ebuchi, "Kokusaika no bunseki shiten to daigaku Shihyo settei no kokoromi" (The Concept of Internationalization: A semantic analysis with special reference to the internationalization of higher education), Daigaku Ronshu, 18 (1989): 29-52, quoted by David L. McConnell, Importing Diversity: Inside Japan's Jet Program (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2000), 271.
71 According to Pyle, Nakasone's foreign policy vision or what he calls his "grand design, [w]as comprised of four dimensions: (1) a new vision of Japan's future, (2) global leadership by remaking Japan into an "international state," (3) formation of a new liberal nationalism, (4) an active role in strategic affairs. See Pyle, "In Pursuit of a Grand Design: Nakasone Betwixt the Past and the Future."
72 Nakasone Yasuhiro, "Watashi ga Yasukuni-Jinja Koshiki-Sanpai wo Dannen Shita Riyu [Why I gave up paying formal visits to the Yasukuni Shrine]," Seiron (September 2001), pp. 100-11. Quoted by Daiki Shibuichi, "The Yasukuni Shrine Dispute and the Politics ofIdentity in Japan: Why All the Fuss?," Asian Survey 45, no. 2 (2005): 2.
73 See Zbigniew Brzezinski, "Japan Should End Free Ride by Devoting 4% of GNP to Aid and Defense," Los Angeles Times, August 13, 1985.
74 Kinju Atarashi, "Japan's Economic Cooperation Policy Towards the Asean Countries," International Affairs 61, no. I (1984): 109.
75 Ibid., 119.
76 Ibid., 120.
77 $54 billion of the total cost was covered by other countries in the coalition. Two-thirds of this was provided by the Gulf countries and more than $10 billion was provided by Japan. United States Department of Defense, Conduct of the Persian Gulf War: Final Report to Congress (Washington, DC: U.S. Department of Defense, 1992).
78 Larry A. Niksch and Robert G. Sutter, "Japan's Response to the Persian Gulf Crisis: Implications for Us-Japan Relations," (Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division, Congressional Research Service, Library of Congress, March 23, 1991).
79 "Democracy 'key to national identity' ," The Daily Yomiuri, November 6, 2003.
80 "Japan Revisits the GnlfWar," the Guardian, September 20, 2001.
81 Takashi Inoguchi, "Japan's Response to the Gulf Crisis: An Analytic Overview, Journal of Japanese Studies 17, no. 2 (1991): 260.
82 Ibid., 264.
83 Eugene Brown, "The Debate over Japan's Strategic Future: Bilateralism versus Regionalism," Asian Survey 33, no. 6 (1993): 546.