Asia Pacific

Saying Goodbye to Prime Minister Shinzo Abe

It was probably not the way he imagined it would go down.  On August 28, Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced he would step down due to health reasons. This came as a shock to many, considering it was just days after he broke the record for the longest uninterrupted tenure as the nation’s leader.  […]

Can the “Okinawa Problem” Ever Be Resolved?

In the coming months, Japan and the United States will negotiate over the Special Measures Agreement (SMA), a cost-sharing arrangement for American military presence. These talks will influence the future of Indo-Pacific security and America’s role in the region. In 2019, reports suggested that the US could demand a five-fold payment increase from the current […]

Japan’s Vicious “Death by Overwork” Cycle

In July 2013, Miwa Sado logged 159 hours of overtime work and took only two days off. She then died of heart failure.  Less than two years later, Matsuri Takahashi died by suicide after consistently logging more than one hundred overtime hours per month. Before her suicide, she tweeted “I want to die” and “I’m […]

The Fight for Freedom is Over. Hong Kong is Finished.

A Hong Kong Police Department riot officer brandishes his weapon at protesters in a metro car. On June 4, thousands of Hongkongers defied a ban on large gatherings to commemorate the thirty-first anniversary of the Tiananmen Square Massacre, the Chinese People’s Liberation Army’s infamous violent crackdown on protesting students and workers. The anniversary comes one […]

Can China and Japan End Their Game of Chicken in the East China Sea?

As the world combats COVID-19, China has been increasing its maritime activities in the East China Sea. On May 10, the Japanese foreign ministry lodged an official complaint with China over an incident where two Chinese ships chased a Japanese fishing boat close to the Japanese-administered Senkaku Islands. A month later, four Chinese vessels, one […]

Nutritious, Delicious, Auspicious: Cuisine, Power, and International Affairs

What is the only British contribution ever made to European agriculture?  If you had asked former French President Jacques Chirac, he would have told you that it was mad cow disease. Following this attack on the defenseless (and indefensible) Britain, Chirac pulled Finland directly into the crossfire, punctuating the most daring French offensive since the […]

Designed in China

Innovation is critical for high-tech manufacturing. Firms and governments constantly seek cutting-edge design and advanced manufacturing capabilities to produce the latest consumer goods and machinery. High-tech manufacturers drive economic growth—especially in advanced economies—and enable a country to compete in the global economy. China is seeking to dominate high-tech manufacturing. While China has made massive economic […]

The Special One? Why Abe Could Defy the Odds and Run for a Fourth Term

The idea of a “rule-breaking” fourth term for the incumbent leader of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has been floating around for some time. Under party rules, the leader “may only serve up to three consecutive terms (nine years).” Prime Minister Shinzo Abe will reach that limit in September 2021, fueling rumors as to who […]

Are Cold Sino–American Relations Solely Trump’s Fault?

Trump leads America in an era of poor relations with China, but have relations with China ever been good? Donald Trump’s foreign policy has been rightfully criticized by many Americans. American prestige and credibility has taken an extraordinary nosedive since Trump came into office. There is, however, one relationship Trump has perhaps taken unjustified criticism […]

The New Yellow Peril? — Anti-Chinese Sentiment in the West

On March 11, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared the novel coronavirus outbreak (COVID-19) a pandemic. Since the outbreak began in December 2019 in China’s Wuhan city, the number of reported cases has increased daily, so it’s no wonder that people are bombarded with news about it every day. While recent news about COVID-19’s mortality […]