GAIKO FORUM 2002 Summer
Diplomacy Inside and Out
Foreign policy has recently become a widespread public concern. Beginning in early 2001, the trusting citizenry learned of the scandalous abuse of public funds by foreign ministry officials. Then, after 11 September 2001, they shared the fear of international terrorism and the concern about how Japan should and could respond to the terrorist attacks in the United States. There has been no lack of activity; the Diet passed the Anti-Terrorism Special Measures Law, allowing Japanese Self-Defense Force vessels to be sent to the Indian Ocean and started debate on legislation concerning Japan's response to military emergencies in its vicinity. As the issues come out for discussion, Japanese are being forced to recognize the complexity of their country's relations with other parts of the world in a rapidly changing international community. As we begin to reflect on foreign policy issues we realize how closely they are linked to domestic developments and trends. Relations between politicians and bureaucrats, between the public and private realms, between government and NGOs all need to be thoughtfully and realistically reexamined. The lead essay, by Tanaka Akihiko, urges the creation of mechanisms through which Japanese ministries and agencies can work jointly in handling foreign affairs issues.
One of the few distinguished moments in Japan's recent diplomacy has been the International Conference on Reconstruction Assistance to Afghanistan held in Tokyo in January 2002. Ogata Sadako, worked for a decade to draw the attention of a largely uncaring world to the Afghan refugee problem. Through her inspiration and the leadership she demonstrated as co-chair of the conference, Ogata helped persuade participating countries to pledge much more financial assistance than expected, bringing the conference to a successful conclusion. Reconstruction assistance to Afghanistan will soon go into full swing. The interview with Ogata in this issue is a continuation and development of her comments published in the Summer 2001 issue of Gaiko Forum English Edition (pp. 40-44) on the refugee problem. Takeda Isami believes that Japanese diplomacy can make its best contribution precisely in this new frontier of humanitarian aid.
The Republic of Korea and Japan jointly hosted the World Cup soccer tournament early this summer. The competitions were the occasion for visits by unprecedented numbers of journalists, teams, and supporters, and they provided a chance for vigorous exchange with people in the local communities who hosted the soccer teams. For many of these communities, the opportunity to welcome the visiting teams turned out to be a shortcut to grass-roots exchange and the start of genuine internationalization. The world event made Japanese feel closer to its co-host and neighbor, Republic of Korea. Kamigaito Kenichi's observation that the Confucian tradition of "trust" is very much alive and well in the ROK is something we will find increasingly valuable to remember as the years go by.
This edition of Gaiko Forum also features a critique of Japan's policy on Islam and an appraisal of Hong Kong today, five years after reversion to Chinese rule.
Taking a flying start toward publishing the English edition of Gaiko Forum on a quarterly basis starting in 2003, a third issue will appear this autumn. The quarterly will contain not only translations of articles from the Japanese edition of Gaiko Forum (founded in 1988) but contributions originally written in English from authors in other parts of the world.
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FOREIGN AFFAIRS FOR OUR TIME: HOW SOUND IS JAPANESE DIPLOMACY?/TANAKA Akihiko
In Japan, 2002 opened with scandals involving foreign ministry officials,and foreign ministry problems are foreign policy problems for the nation. A leading scholar of international politics expresses concern about the capabilities of Japanfs stewards of foreign affairs.
UNFINISHED BUSINESS IN A FORSAKEN COUNTRY: LOOKING BACK AND FORWARD/OGATA Sadako
Soon after the International Conference on Reconstruction Assistance to Afghanistan in January 2002, Ogata Sadako, conference co-chair, was interviewed by Sasae Kenfichiro of the foreign ministry. Their exchange reveals her vexation over the worldfs indifference to the Afghan refugee problem during her term as U.N. High Commissioner for Refugees, 1991-2000 and considers the possibility of better prospects for approaching the problem following the success of the Conference.
HUMANITARIAN AID DIPLOMACY: FROM CAMBODIA TO AFGHANISTAN/TAKEDA Isami
A decade ago Japan hosted an international conference on reconstruction aid to facilitate the peace process in Cambodia. Today it is once again extending its diplomatic frontiers through international initiatives to push reconstruction assistance for Afghanistan.
JAPAN'S POLICY ON ISLAM: RETHINKING THE DIALOGUE APPROACH/ KATAKURA Kunio
A former ambassador to Arab countries, including Egypt and Saudi Arabia, discusses the need to rethink Japanfs Islam diplomacy.
THE DESTRUCTION OF THE BAMIYAN BUDDHAS AND 11 SEPTEMBER TERR: A HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE/MORIMOTO Kosei
The abbot of Todaiji temple in Nara and scholar of Islam describes differences in perceptions between Buddhists and Muslims and puts the recent acts of terrorists and fundamentalists in the broad perspective of Islamic history.
TENACITY AND THE IMPORTANCE OF HISTORY: KOREA'S LIVING LEGACY/KAMIGAITO Kenichi
Based on many years association with South Korea, a specialist in the comparative study of culture talks about how Koreans value trust and history.
ASPIRATION AND ADVERSITY IN INTERNATIONAL EXCHANGE/KIKUCHI Akinori and TAKEI Hajime
Two high school teachers in Tokyo write about a Japan-Korea student exchange program that was abruptly cancelled in the wake of the history textbook controversy and the Japanese prime ministerfs visit to the Yasukuni Shrine of summer 2001.
TOWARD AND ENLARGED HONG KONG: UNIFICATION AND INTEGRATION/INAGAKI Kiyoshi
Five years have passed since Hong Kong reverted to Chinese sovereignty. Will Hong Kong, fueled by the industry and markets of the South China economic zone?gfactory of the worldh?continue to serve as the financial gateway to the mainland China?