Free Alliance Between United States, Japan and Australia Essay Sample

Multilateralism is mostly  connected to internationalism, and involves the forming of alliances and coalitions among nations/states in order to achieve common foreign  policy goals. Multilateralism came into political dominance in the wake of the tragec  September 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, because it described the trigged the  foreign policy stance of the United States of America.It can also be described also as  an approach to international trade, the monetary system, international disarmament process and security,  based on the idea that if international cooperative regimes for the management of conflicts of interest are to be influential and yeild results , they must represent a wide  and a continous  agreement  among the states of the international  government systems. Multilateralism therefore applies  itself in places  where clear common interests in the international fraternity can be  identified (Franfel, 1993).

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 Regionalism may refer to the distinctive local character of different parts of the world or to a people's perception of and identification with such places.Australia ,Japan and the United states are key trading nations in the Asia pacific region and hence any bilateral trade agreement between any two pairs is of utter importance to the third party as well.This has lead to a further insight on the impacts of such an alliance would have to the participating nations.In this essay the possibilities of such a trilateral regionalism and multilateralism among the US,Japan and Australia will be discussed, reveiwing past experiences of such an alliance and what the future looks like for the  alliance. (L.Rothstein, 1968)

 During a  time of global uncertainty and transition, enduring U.S . interests induces a straight eyed look over the horizon to percieve  the challenges ahead and the possible opportunities to best shape the upcoming world order. Having the world's  half  population,  about one-third of the global economy, and a continous  growing economic, financial, technological, and political strength in the international system, Asia is a major  role  to a stable, prosperous world order that best matches  American interests. As a result the US has more specifically continued in its interest with Japan as it see it as a good vehicle towards great achievements for both states. The intentions of the US to getting Asia right in this case  does not mean the enforcing of U.S. values on the region, but on the contrary , encouraging an environment in which the region's leaders outlays  their own national goals  in terms that are favourable  with U.S.political and economic missions. That means economic flourishing  based on market principles, free and open trade, and protection of intellectual assets rights, labour rights, and the environment. It would  mean a greater political freedom with liberal institutions to influence  the economic successes the region currently thrives  in. It leads to  transparency in the military arena  and much more  application of national assets to the common good in areas of humanitarian relief and reconstruction. It  also means a region where the major powers cordinate to focus on international threats such as disease outbreak and  terrorism.The final results willl be a  region where nationalism and patriotism are channeled into efforts to solicating regional hardships for the  common good.

The US-Australian relationship was further influenced by its responding to the attacks of September 11, 2001.The Australian prime minister thereafter invoked  a Treaty in support of the United States. The prime minister's later  decision to support the United States in its endavour to bring freedom  Operation  in Iraq which  has served to enrich an already strongn alliance relationship.Nevertheless, skillful political management will be required to keep the alliance strong. Within the alliance, core  problems stem from contrasts  in perspective, with the United States pushing for a greater emphasis on the global context, while Australia seeks to  majoring balance its regional and global achievements. This though does not mean that they are faced by challenges. Australia is faced with a number of security challenges which  leaves a  significant demands on Australia for its  limited defense resources. Within the alliance, problems also arise with respect to  the size of defensesforces and in defense  financial spending. The  Australia's historical, geographical, and national interests serve to define Australia as a regional stronghold  with global merits. As ti keeps  operating on a global scale to secure its regional interests, it  at the same time works with regional powers as well as  managing its  relations with the United States. After Iraq, Australia will come back  to the Asia-Pacific region as a regional leader. Following this glittering   evolution the United States must be conscious of and respect.Australia, like Japan and the United States,  continue to remain transpacific, as opposed to pan-Asian in location. This complementarity gives  an opportunity for cooperation among the three countries to foster openness across the Asia-Pacific area.

Japanese strategic interests fundamentally lie, currently has two major layers of security cooperation with the first layer being  the US-led security network, which maintains core control of  alliance relationships and also has othersecurity interventions with regional countries. One of the key influencing force in this context is how the region can fully utilise and work together  with the global superpower for regions security problems. The second layer is regional multilateralism.  The spirit of multilateralism is of importance in the cooperation with all parties from  a certain geographical region. The Australia and Japan partnership is a unique form of a bi-lateral  security cooperation since it has opportunities and capability to shape the  two layers of the US security network and the regional multilateral endeavour. The reason relates to the similarity of Australian and Japanese security policies. Australia and Japan are among the closest allies of the United States and play significant roles in US-led security initiatives. Also the two countries have been significant participants in the development of multilateralism in the Asia-Pacific araea. Such a fundamental similarity of Australian and Japanese security policies makes  both countries to have a unique bilateral alliance. It can be described  as a two wheel partnership where they greatly interacts with both the US security network and regional multilateralism. This partnership means that Australian and Japanese policy-makers must make out  how these two different security tools can be used to solve the  regions security challenges.

The other security vehicle for the partnership of  Australia and Japan,  is the triangular and wider cooperative network  with the United State though it  has a its  set of merits  and demerits. The US security network is highly powerful  and action-oriented. Following  the earthquake in  2004 Boxing Day and tsunami disaster, for instance, they witnessed how able the US led coalition was in the face of an unforeseen upheaval.  However the United States, its alliances and other  core security networks, do have their own limitations. The lesson that one can traced back  from the history of US foreign policy is that the commitments and interests of the United States to the Asia-Pacific can become unreliable and narrow. Thus, the Australia-Japan partnership and their cooperation through other frameworks with the United States would seemably help resolve some of theses pecking issues

In the security network created ,the United States is meant to  defend Japan and areas under its administration, and that Japan is to  provide bases and facilities for U.S. forces in country for the security of the Far East. This, coupled with Japan's selfimposed constraints on defense, formed a security framework that compelled an inevitable junior-senior partnership until recent years. Japan's Self-Defense Forces deployments to the Indian Ocean in support of Operation Enduring Freedom and to areas in and around Iraq to assist in the reconstruction effort demonstrated Japan's efforts  to make contributions well beyond the geographic scope of East Asia. Japan's active participation abroad better reflected  its global interests and helped to diminish the security hierarchy that typified the U.S.-Japan relationship in the past. To address the growing threat of missile proliferation in the region, the United States and Japan have cooperated to develop missile defense technologies and concepts. The United States and Japan are now in the process of producing and employing a missile defense system, sharing the technological capabilities of the world's two largest economies. By cooperating on this important venture, Japan will benefit from the synergies resulting from a missile defense command and control system, improving its joint operational systems and its  bilateral ability to quickly share critical information. To produce and employ missile defense systems successfully together, Japan changed its prohibition on military exports, allowing such exports to the United States. Through all of these measures, the alliance made rapid progress in defense cooperation to meet challenges imposed by the existing security environment.

For the well coexistence ,the United States must view itself as an Asia-Pacific power and decide to take part in all aspects of life in Asia. At the best of times, the United States is seen by many Asians as a capricious power, too often driven by narrow domestic interests and ideological imperatives. But even worse in the minds of many is a tendency for prolonged inattention to Asia. Arguably, the United States presently suffers from a strategic preoccupation with another region of the world. If engagement in Asia remains episodic, or lacks sufficient senior-level involvement on the part of U.S. officials, a transition in the region's power hierarchy is possible. Even absent precipitous events, a gradual erosion of U.S. influence could occur if China continues to extend its reach and if the region as a whole loses confidence in the staying power of the United States. The challenges for the United States to remain active in the life of Asia are many. There are serious questions as to whether or not the United States will have the fiscal and military wherewithal to operate effectively in the region by 2020. Large budget deficits and a growing national debt, military overstretch, and the press of domestic requirement. (wah, 2000)

Japan on the other hand has got some hudrles tackle  it  faces many discrete decisions that are domestic in nature. Although very specific decisions regarding how Japan chooses to organize itself, resolve constitutional questions, and expend resources are decisions that Japan must make for itself, the United States, as an alliance partner with high expectations for U.S.- Japan partnership, has a strong interest in how Japan approaches such matters. Itis in this spirit that we offer recommendations for Japan on what objective observers would rightfully note as internal Japanese decisions.  Japan should continue to strengthen its national security institutions and bureaucratic infrastructure to facilitate the most effective decision making possible. Modern challenges necessitate that Japan have the capability to manage foreign and security policies, particularly during times of crisis, with speed, agility, and flexibility, while sustaining internal coordination and security.

The ongoing discussion regarding legislation that would allow for theoverseas deployment of Japanese forces based on certain conditions  is also encouraging.  The United States wishes to see a security partner with greater flexibility to deploy on short notice when the situation warrants. The  following are recommendations that are broader in scope in enhancing better alliance.The United States and Japan should keep up  strengthening military and security cooperation through a number of specific measures which should  effected. The U.S.-Japan global alliance remains a constant and positive force and the  most fundamental aspects of its  security commitments, which include the U.S commitment to defend Japan from nuclear attack which  should be reiterated. The United States and Japan should reveal their  intentions tostart negotiations on a comprehensive free-trade agreement.

The  outcome of the  previous presidential election remains important for the future of the US- Australia alliance. The alliance will continue, but the nature of the relationship will inevitably be shaped by the character of the next administration,  its policies,  political standing and, especially, by its impact on the regional and global security environment  Australia is America's closest ally in the Asia-Pacific region and the second most important US  ally in the world now after the United Kingdom. After the collapse of the Soviet Union there was a sense of drift in Australia's relationship with the United States throughout most of the 1990s. Australia did not seem to be as important to the US as it was in the Cold War. But since the tragic events of September 11 2001 and the so named  war on terror the relationship has become extremely close once again and maybe  even  more closer than in the Cold War. There has always been a strong majority in favour of the alliance in Australia. Now, the question is being asked whether Australia has become an overly-compliant ally of the US and whether Australia's commitment of forces to military action in Iraq will damage its diplomatic relations in Asia. Others reject this and point to its  shared values with America in fighting the war on terror and ridding the world of weapons of mass destruction in the hands of rogue regimes. (Carberra, 2000)

The importance of the alliance is self-evidentwithout which , Australia would be a much more vulnerable country. The advantages the alliance brings of access to highly important intelligence and defence oppotunities, as well as its military mighty, are of immeasurable value.The costs of the alliance are well understood.Today, it is the war on terror and weapons of mass destruction in the hands of rogue regimes. The problem here is not the aims of US policies but the way Washington is going about it that has become a divisive issue in the mixed support for the alliance in Australia..This has reinforced security ties  that had been already established through the Trilateral Security agreement among the United States, Japan, and Australia. Australian Minister of Foreign Affairs Stephen Smith claimed recently that Japan had  been Australia's closest and most consistent friend in the  region for many years. (Carberra, Defence 2000:Our Future Defenve Force, 2000)

The outcome of the 2008 United States presidential election were important for the future of that United States  alliance with Australia . The alliance has  initially remained  in goodshape, as should be expected of such a close and long-standing relationship between two countries with many shared experiences, values and interests. But in the medium term the strength and shape of the alliance will increasingly depend on the broader regional security environment and architecture, and especially on the relationship between the United States,

China and Australia. It is in Australia's interest that both of these great powers are fully engaged in the Asia-Pacific region, and that they recognise a shared interest in and responsibility for the maintenance of regional stability.

Japan is one of the United States' most important economic partners. Economical and trading  ties with Japan continue to be of  utter importance  to U.S. national interests and, therefore, to the U.S. Congress. By virtual of the  most conventional technique  of measurement, the United States and Japan are the world's two largest economies,15 summing up to around  40% of worldgross domestic product , and their  relationship inducing   not only  an impact on each other but further still to the rest of the world. These two countries  economical relation is enhanced by trading in  merchandise , services, and foreign investments.

North Korea's nuclear weapon test in October 2006 and the subsequent debate in Japan about whether or not to explore its own nuclear future brought renewed attention to the subject of Japan and nuclear weapons.Just as North Korea's long-range missile test over Japanese airspace in 1998 contributed significantly to Japan's decision a few years later to embrace America's missile defense (MD) development program, might the 2006 nuclear test eventu­ally prove to be a similar watershed moment in Japanese defense policy? Would there be a rising tide of Japanese sentiment in favor of reexamining the three non-nuclear prin­ciples of non-possession, non-manufacture, and non-introduction?

In pursuit of answers to these questions, the Institute for Foreign Policy Analysis (IFPA) conducted an extend­ed research effort over the past two years to examine not only Japan's propensity and capacity to "go nuclear," but also to explore the overarching issue of how deterrence is functioning and changing in the context of the U.S.-Ja­pan alliance. It is these last two questions in particular re­garding deterrence and extended deterrence that proved most interesting and, we think, particularly important to U.S. policy makers, given the dramatic changes underway in the regional security environment in East Asia and rel­evant proposals in the areas of non-proliferation and arms control. This report explains the results of our study.

North Korea's nuclear test and continuing missile pro­grams are, however, examples of Japan's eroding security position in the region, and they contribute to the growing sense of vulnerability that we detected in Japan, which is compounded by China's military modernization, its space exploration, and its rising economic and diplomatic influ­ence. Japan has always been dependent on energy imports , but its re­liance on food imports is also high, and instability in the Middle East and the rising share of food imports from China exacerbate the un­easiness. Japanese policy makers do not particularly fear war in the region, but they are concerned about a loss of security on the margins, whether this involves becoming a victim of coercive diplomacy or nuclear/missile extortion by North Korea. The United States has no intention of abandoning its ally and pays close attention to developments in East Asia, but it is also a nation at war in other parts of the world, so that attention is not undivided.

Indeed, although the U.S.-Japan alliance is still bound together by a strong sense of common interests and shared values, the two countries' security priorities are diverg­ing in meaningful ways. The United States is motivated primarily by concern about nuclear terrorism and other large-scale terrorist attacks on U.S. while Japan tends to focus on the defense of Japan and maintaining an allied advantage over China's growing area denial capabilities and North Korea's mis­sile programs. Missiles  is a shared concern, but their emphasis is different  as there is concern of defense of Middle East allies for the United States, and oil supply stability or North Korean foreign exchange earnings for Japan.

All of this suggests a situation that can perhaps be de­scribed as two friends not being completely honest with each other. Washington is trying to recruit Japan to be­come a more capable and proactive partner in multilat­eral coalitions to maintain global stability and promote democracy, while Tokyo is primarily concerned with pro­viding national defense at a relatively low financial and political cost. Each country provides minimal satisfaction on issues of paramount importance to the other in order to receive what it wants in return. While this is largely understandable and has not yet undermined the alliance in any serious fashion, it is an inherently weak foundation on which to maintain and support the alliance.Extended deterrence in the U.S.-Japan alliance is un­der pressure because it is more complicated than before, and this challenge comes at a time when America's and Japan's security priorities are diverging. For decades, extended deterrence was thought of in simple terms, char­acterized by robust U.S. security commitments to its al­lies overseas and underwritten predominately by the pro­vision of a nuclear umbrella to deter war with the Soviet bloc. The U.S. commitment to counter the Soviet threat was largely unquestioned in Tokyo, and the details about how deterrence worked mattered little.

The United States is deemphasizing the role of nucle­ar weapons in supporting extended deterrence, which  is acceptable provided Washington works proactively with Tokyo to shore up the multiple other components of de­terrence  Deterrence has always been about more than just the nuclear umbrella, but this fact is often overlooked, given the power and sym­bolism of those weapons. Deemphasizing the role of nu­clear weapons is a welcome development, but it should be accompanied by an intense period of political, diplomat­ic, and strategic consultations covering non-proliferation policies, regional diplomatic and security initiatives, and bilateral security cooperation

For decades, Japan has enjoyed a favorable security bal­ance or surplus in the region, thanks to America's nucle­ar umbrella, U.S. forward-deployed forces, and the absence of a near peer on the seas or in the skies that could possibly threaten Japan, apart from perhaps the Soviet Union. The fact that the Soviet Union was locked in a titanic struggle with America was oddly comforting to Japan, since Wash­ington's deterrence credibility was quite high vis-à-vis such a stark ideological enemy of relatively minor global eco­nomic consequence. To deal with the security challeng­es that did exist, Japan's favored approach  has long been external balancing coupled with incremental internal improvements in the areas of national defense and support for regional and in­ternational operations. Interviews in Japan for this proj­ect revealed concern among defense planners that external balancing might not be as effective in the future as it has been in the past.

In the twenty-first century, Japan's security surplus is slowly shifting toward a deficit, as North Korea improves its missile-weapons strength long enjoyed by the al­lies. All of this suggests that the United States and Japan could lose their nearly exclusive dominance over the con­flict escalation ladder in the region, and some in Tokyo worry that this will cause Washington to seek to avoid escalation  at almost any cost. Thus, questions in Japan about the future of nuclear balance im­mediately put the spotlight on the regional conventional balance, which is still favorable for the alliance but trend­ing undesirably.


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