Abstract

Abstract:

Narrative changes on security discourses in Japan can provide clues to understand Japan's security geopolitical behavior in recent years. In this article I shed light on the narratives of Okazaki Hisahiko, who was Shinzō Abe's strategic mentor and a heretic in Japanese security discourse. Okazaki, a "military realist," fought against the mainstream political realism represented by Nagai Yōnosuke, who became a defender of the Yoshida Doctrine in the 1980s. Military realists emphasize the importance of geopolitics with the "eternal factor" of geography along with military development. After the Cold War, with the nuclear threat of North Korea and the rise of China, the military realists' narratives have buttressed the credibility of assertive Japanese leaders, including Abe. In this article I explain why Japan's security policy has been dominated by geopolitics by examining narrative changes in the post–Cold War period, and reveal how military realists have defeated other narratives, among them those of political realists, unarmed neutralists (later the civilian power school), and Japanese Gaullists.

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Additional Information

ISSN
2288-2871
Print ISSN
0258-9184
Pages
pp. 297-322
Launched on MUSE
2019-05-31
Open Access
No
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