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Research on Japan’s New Pacifism Trend after Cold War

Author: LiChang
Tutor: ZhouGuangHui
School: Jilin University
Course: Political Theory
Keywords: After Cold War Japan New Pacifism Trend
Type: PhD thesis
Year: 2008
Downloads: 264
Quote: 1
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After cold war, in Japan there appeared one political trend of“the New Pacifism”. Its central idea is that Japan must undertake the significant responsibility to shape the international order, and one—nation pacifism, which is to give the responsibility of establishing the international order to others, is invalid. When the purpose of the international cooperation is for keeping the world peace, Japanese government must take the measure of personnel exchange. The former Japanese passive diplomacy must be ended, and establish the international society system between one nation and others, the purpose of which is for mutual help and cooperation.This political trend encourages Japanese government to dispatch Self-Defense Army overseas, and advocates that Japan should play a major international role, and establishes the Japanese lofty status and glory internationally. These have reflected the tendency of part of Japanese people’s national notion after cold war ended, which is to be different from former peaceful one with economy as its center. Some politicians and scholars believed that in order to strengthen Japanese consciousness of world leaders after cold war, the new pacifism must be adopted.The major view of new pacifism is to keep Japan maintaining the necessary low limit of self-defense power and to contribute in the activities of international peace and aid. That is we must change the past status of limitation to participate the international societies in many places, and make Japan become“the ordinary country”as other countries. While“the ordinary country”requires two conditions: first is to do what should do with its own responsibility, particularly“in the aspect of safety secure, we must contribute in accordance with ourselves”; Second, is to make most efforts in creating rich & stable life, global environment and so on. Japan must become the ordinary country, as U.S, U.K, to dispatch armies overseas, and involve the international friction. This kind of involving was so called initiative pacifism, which is to involve in creating peace mechanism.According to the above evolution of new pacifism, taking the Japanese political development process after cold war as the longitudinal axis, the main contents of different stages of new pacifism as the horizontal one, the new pacifism is concluded and arranged based on the following periods: birth, low tide, development and transformation, according to the time sequence after the cold war. The main body of this thesis is divided into six chapters:The first chapter aims to analyze and categorize the basic concepts of the trend of new pacifism and makes a comparison between new pacifism and neo-conservatism, new nationalism and neo-nationalism. It claims that we should not only approach the issue of Japanese political trend after cold war from the perspectives of neo-conservatism, new nationalism and neo-nationalism, but also pay attention to the new pacifism. Besides that, this chapter also makes an analysis of the difference of the above trends of thought.The time range in Chapter Two is from Aug. 1990 to Aug. 1993, which can be defined as the birth of new pacifism. After the breakout of the first Gulf War in Aug. 1990, though facing the pressure from the U.S, the Japanese paid 13 billion dollars for the expense of the war, confined by the national constitution they did not dispatch any men to the war which directly caused the dissatisfaction from the western countries headed by the U.S. That is just the reason when Kuwait expressed its thanks for the international aid after restoration, the Japanese’s contributions to the war is not mentioned which gives rise to the dissatisfaction among the national public. At that time some of the conservative scholars and politicians put forward the terms of global pacifism, active pacifism, and responsible pacifism, which is taken as the birth of Japan’s New Pacifism.The third stage is defined as the rising period, which stretches from Aug. 1993 to the end of Year 1995. Due to the changes of Japanese domestic political and economical situations, in Aug. 1993, LDP was forced to give up its long-term execution of power beginning to rise since 1955, which directly leaded to the collapse of‘1955 regime’. From then on, Japanese politics entered to the times of multiparty and vertical & horizontal alliance. Since each party hoped to control the power and showing itself at this turbulence stage, different kinds of new pacifism ideas emerged. Furthermore, the debate concerning the revision of the constitution was becoming more and more fierce. Comparing with the unrest of the domestic politics, the developing trend of new pacifism at this stage presented the rising trend. The fourth period is defined as the new peaceful development period ranging from the beginning of 1996 to the end of 1999. Since the January of 1996, LDP has become the central regime of power. After experiencing the combined governing of small parties and then the coalition government with socialist party as the prime minister, the Japanese government was changed to be the combined govern taking LDP as the main party. Just as we mentioned above the new pacifism had been in the stage of rising period, as the innovation party in 1955, LDP has changed its own creed and claim. Therefore when LDP finally controlled the power, there is no more party, which can be taken as the restriction to the LDP. In addition, Japan and the U.S governments redefined the Japan-US Security System, and issued the following bills, which related to peripheral affairs, such as Japan-US Security System Declaration, Japan-US Defense Cooperation Guidelines, New Japan-US Defense Cooperation Guidelines Correlation Laws, and National Flag and Anthem Law. On Jan. 9, 1999, Prime Minister Kofuchi promised to have the Conception for 21st Japan Talkfest, on the 145th Congress, moreover, organize the brain making organization in March, which consisted of the elites and experts in the relative fields. As to the issues of Japan in the World, Prosperity & Vigor, disburden & lenitive Life, Beautiful Land & Safe Society and Japanese future, they made a detailed research within 10 months, which basically outlined the national image of Japan in the 21st century.The fifth chapter is defined as the transformation of new pacifism, the duration of which is from 2000 until now. Since the 21st century, the development of Japanese new pacifism entered the stage of transformation. In Jan. 2000, the Japanese Congress began to take the first step of revising the constitution to first set up the Constitution Survey Association aiming to achieve the goal of revising the present constitution within 5 years and realize the so-called Normal Country from the legal principles. As for the international strategy, Japan also seeks ways to get a seat as the permanent member in the UN Security Council. By the chance of 911 Accident in 2001, the Japanese government immediately issued Anti-terrorism Special Measures Law, which made Japanese Self-Defense Army take part in the non-military task in the war areas since 2nd War. At the same time, by dispatching Self-Defense Army to implement the support in the war areas of Gulf and Afghanistan developed by U.S, the Japanese finally achieved the goals of new pacifism, that is, to participate in the international military activities under the framework of the UN. In May, 2007, Japanese Congress passed the National Referendum Law, which regulates that at the first Congress after at least 3 years, that is to say, in Jan, 2011, the bill of concerning the revision of the constitution can be proposed. Hence, from the level of legislation, it opened a gap for the revision of the present constitutions. The developing trend of new pacifism starts from dispatching armies abroad to become a permanent member of the UN Security Council and then by controlling the UN Security Council, it achieved the goal of participating in the world peacekeeping. At present it has been developed to the stage of revising the peace constitutions. Hence, the new pacifism has been transformed from pure theoretical assumptions to practical activities.The sixth is to analyze the new pacifism under global background and its trend, then propose corresponding measures.To sum up, after the integrated analysis of the development of the Japanese New Pacifism after the cold war, the corresponding solution and attitude which is suggested to be adopted by our country is put forward.Major Points of View1、After the cold war, the conservative tendency of the whole Japanese politics is obvious day by day, which should be emphasized the influence and function of new pacifism. There are similarities and differences between new pacifism and new conservatism. Although their theoretical origins, starting points, contents and ideology system have been overlapped, the directions of the emphasis are different, which should not be confused to analyze the concrete Japanese politics.2、The new pacifism should be treated by all ways. The positive aspect of new pacifism is to elaborate national comprehensive power and make contribution for the world peace and stability, which should be affirmed. But if this contribution is done rashly, without basing on the active introspection to the history, trustee of surrounding countries, widespread understanding and recognition in Japan, then the function of new pacifism is negative even reactionary.3、China, as one of the most important Japanese neighboring countries, should attach great importance to Japanese new pacifism trend, strengthen mutual exchange in traditional fields, develop new exchanges, and promote peace, stability and prosperity development of region and the whole world, which could create a relative peaceful international environment for Chinese economic construction.

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