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 The anti-secession law passed by China’s National People’s Congress on March 14, 2005 has raised concern that renewed military tension might occur across the Taiwan Strait. Given that assistance from Japan would be an important factor in the effectiveness of any military component of a U.S. response to further escalation of tension, insight into the likely extent of Japanese support for U.S. policy in the Strait is of pressing concern to Washington. There is, however, no clear answer as to how Japan would likely react. Note, for instance, that in the March 1996 Taiwan Strait crisis very little dialogue took place between Japanese and U.S. officials as to whether U.S. forces operating from Japan triggered the requirement for “prior consultations” articulated in an exchange of notes that occurred during the negotiation of the 1960 Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security. There was even less discussion as to the role, if any, that Japan could have played in the crisis. Although a comprehensive review of the Guidelines for U.S.-Japan Defense Cooperation began later that year, the extent of Japan’s geographical support limitations in the event of any U.S. military intervention in the region has remained unclear. Thus many were taken by surprise at the issuance of the February 19, 2005 Joint Statement of the U.S.-Japan Security Consultative Committee [reproduced in Appendix I]. This committee was the so-called “2+2” meeting of U.S. Secretary of State Condoleeza Rice and Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld and their Japanese counterparts, Minister of Foreign Affairs Nobutaka Machimura and Minister of State for Defense and Director-General of the Defense Agency Yoshinori Ohno. This statement captured Roy Kamphausen is Director of National Security Affairs at NBR. Prior to his retirement from the military, he was Country Director for China-Taiwan-Mongolia Affairs in the Office of the Secretary of Defense. LTC (retired) Kamphausen also worked for the last three Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, first as an intelligence analyst and later as China Branch Chief in the Joint Staff Directorate for Strategic Plans and Policy (J5). He can be reached at . Roy Kamphausen Introduction nbr analysis  headlines by announcing that the peaceful resolution of issues concerning the Taiwan Strait was a common regional strategic objective of the United States and Japan. Immediate reactions to the Joint Statement both in the region and around the world emphasized that the inclusion of the Taiwan issue marked an entirely new period in U.S.-Japan and Sino-Japan relations. Commentators were quick to assert that the Joint Statement reflected discontinuity with recent regional history and bilateral policy, and opined that the Joint Statement might lead to a degradation of regional stability. Is the Joint Statement indeed a change in policy toward a closer and more formalized U.S.-Japan joint response to any tension in the region? Or might the announcement actually be consistent with both extant policy and past practice? In advance of the Joint Statement’s release and in anticipation of a more detailed consideration of the overall issue of Japan’s likely support for any U.S. military action in the region, The National Bureau of Asian Research (NBR) invited a team of international experts representing the perspectives of Japan, Taiwan, and the United States to provide analysis of the nature of and trends in Japan-Taiwan relations and the implications for the United States, particularly in the event of a major crisis occurring in the Taiwan Strait. In particular, NBR asked the scholars to address the following five questions: Q1: What strategic and political circumstances would maximize chances for Japan to provide the necessary support for U.S. forces in the event of a Taiwan crisis? Q2: What sort of informal political and defense contacts exist between Japan and Taiwan? Q3: Does the vibrant Japanese-Taiwanese technology trade have a potential defense technology component? Q4: How do Sino-Japanese relations affect Japanese-Taiwan relations? Q5: How does the perceived requirement for the United States to defend Taiwan affect U.S.Japanese relations?  Qin Jize, “U.S.-Japan Statement on Taiwan Opposed,” China Daily, February 21, 2005, http://www.chinadaily.; “Interfering in Internal Affair,” Xinhua, February 23, 2005, htm; and Keith Bradsher, “Statement on Taiwan Denounced by China; U.S. and Japan See ‘Common Strategic Objective’ on Island,” International Herald Tribune...


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