For decades after World War II, Japan chose to focus on soft power and economic diplomacy alongside a close alliance with the United States. Since the end of the Cold War, and especially during the rise of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Japan’s military capabilities have resurged. In this analysis of Japan’s contemporary security policies, Andrew L. Oros shows how a “gradual awakening” to new security challenges has culminated in the multifaceted “security renaissance” of the past decade. Contested memories of the Pacific War and Imperial Japan, postwar anti-militarist convictions, and an unequal relationship with the United States still play an outsized role. In Japan’s Security Renaissance Oros argues that Japan’s future security policies will continue to be shaped by these legacies. Bringing Japanese domestic politics together with the broader geopolitical landscape of East Asia and the world, Japan’s Security Renaissance provides guidance on this century’s emerging international dynamics.
Andrew L. Oros
Professor of Political Science and Director of International Studies, Washington College
Andrew L. Oros is a Professor of Political Science and Director of International Studies at Washington College in Chestertown, Maryland. He completed his latest book, Japan’s Security Renaissance (Columbia University Press, 2017), as a visiting fellow at the East-West Center Washington, based in part on research conducted as an invited research fellow at Japan’s National Institute of Defense Studies and as a Japan Foundation Abe fellow at Keio University in Tokyo and Peking University in Beijing. In addition, he is author of Normalizing Japan: Politics, Identity, and the Evolution of Security Practice (Stanford University Press, 2008), co-author of Global Security Watch: Japan (Praeger Press, 2010), and numerous peer-reviewed and policy-centered articles on Japanese politics and East Asian security. His 2015 article, “Japan’s Strategic Culture: Security Identity in a Fourth Modern Incarnation?,” was nominated for the annual Bernard Brodie Prize, awarded for the outstanding article appearing in the scholarly journal, Contemporary Security Policy, the previous year. He earned his Ph.D in political science at Columbia University, which included eighteen months based at the University of Tokyo. In addition, he earned an M.Sc in the Politics of the World Economy from the London School of Economics, which he attended as a British government Marshall scholar, and a B.A. in International Relations and East Languages and Cultures from the University of Southern California, where he studied for a year each at Nanzan University in Nagoya and Osaka University of Foreign Studies.