Spurred by a perceived growing ballisic missile threat from within the Asia-Pacific region and requests from the U.S. to support research and development on components of a missile defense system, the Japanese government decided in late 1998 and early 99 to move forward with joint research and development with the U.S. on ballistic missile defense. This book explores both the benefits and potential problems of deploying a BMD system in Japan.
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This study seeks to identify and examine the many factors influenc-ingJapan's approach to the issue of ballistic missile defense (BMD),including the perceptions, motives, and interests of key Japaneseplayers; the role of the United States; the Japanese decisionmakingprocess regarding BMD issues; and the dynamics of critical consid-erationssuch as alliance maintenance, cost, feasibility, commercialand legal factors, political or bureaucratic competition, and the be-haviorof the People's Republic of China. The purpose of this exami-nationis to assess the pros and cons of various options available toJapan, to identify the most likely courses of Japan's future BMD de-velopment,and to discern the possible implications of such devel-opmentfor the U.S.-Japan alliance and Asian stability.This report should be of interest to scholars, journalists, students,and other members of the public who seek a better understanding ofthe Japanese political process concerning ballistic missile defenseand its impact on the likelihood for continued cooperation in the de-velopmentof a theater missile defense system in Northeast Asia. Theauthors hope it will be of particular use to policymakers on bothsides of the Pacific as they work toward building a more durable U.S.-Japansecurity partnership that continues to contribute to peace andstability in the region.This research was sponsored by the Japan Foundation Center forGlobal Partnership and was conducted in the International Securityand Defense Policy Center of RAND's National Security ResearchDivision (NSRD). Supplemental funding for this project was pro-videdby NSRD and the RAND Center for Asia-Pacific Policy (CAPP).The study's third author, Takashi Kawakami, currently a member ofthe Japanese National Institute for Defense Studies and former aideto Diet member Toshiki Kaifu, was a major contributor to ChapterThree. However, he was neither involved with nor responsible forthe reporting on the Japanese Defense Force and the Japanese De-fenseAgency found in that chapter.About the Author:
Rachel M. Swanger (Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, Washington, D.C., M.A. in Japanese Studies and International Economics) is a market leader for Foundation and Nongovernmental Research, NSRD, Rand. Michael Swaine (PhD, Harvard University) is a senior political scientist at Rand and director of the Rand Center for AsiaPacific Policy. Research interests include Chinese security policy, foreign relations, Chinese civilmilitary relations, U.S.China relations, and East Asian security issues.
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