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Japan as a ‘Global Pacifist State’

Its Changing Pacifism and Security Identity


Daisuke Akimoto

This book examines Japan’s changing pacifism and its implications for Japan’s security identity from 1945 to the present. To examine the shift in Japanese pacifism, this research employs the concept of ‘negative pacifism’ (Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution) and ‘positive pacifism’ (the Preamble of the Constitution) as an analytical framework. To analyse multiple factors which facilitated the shift in Japan’s pacifism, this study applies ‘analytical eclecticism’ and integrates the analytical framework (negative-positive pacifism) with orthodox international relations theories and approaches. In an application of analytical eclecticism, the author proposes four theoretical models of Japan’s security identity: (a) ‘pacifist state’ (classical liberalism/negative pacifism); (b) ‘UN peacekeeper’ (neo-liberalism/positive pacifism); (c) ‘normal state’ (classical realism/domestic pressure); and (d) ‘US ally’ (neo-realism/external-structural pressure). In addition to the four basic models above, this book attempts to reveal Japan’s ‘core security identity’ as a ‘global pacifist state’.


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Chapter Two: Japan as a ‘UN Peace-Keeper’ in Cambodia 91


91 Chapter Two Japan as a ‘UN Peace-Keeper’ in Cambodia Introduction In the previous chapter, Japan’s security policy during the Cold War period, which had been constrained by ‘negative pacifism’, was exam- ined. In contrast, this chapter analyses an emerging role of ‘positive pacifism’ which enabled Japan to contribute to the United Nations Tran- sitional Authority in Cambodia (UNTAC). It was the first opportunity for the Japanese government to dispatch the SDF for UNPKO. Prior to participation in UNTAC, the Japanese government had been involved in the resolution of the Cambodian imbroglio which involved domestic (four political factions), regional (Vietnam, Thailand, China) and inter- national (the US and the USSR) confrontations.290 Historically, the Japanese government recognised the Sihanouk government (1953–1970), the Lon Nol government (1970–1975), and the Pol Pot government (1975–1979). Notably the Japanese govern- ment, which followed the US position, did not recognise the Heng Samrin government (1979–1991). Japan’s diplomatic policy on Cam- bodia was influenced by the overall US strategy of containment of glo- bal communism, as well as regional responses from China and member states of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).291 Throughout the 1989 Paris Conference, 1990 Tokyo Conference, and 1991 Paris Agreements, Japanese diplomacy on Cambodia had been unusually active. As a part of these diplomatic efforts, MOFA sought opportunities to dispatch SDF to participate in UNTAC. After the enactment of the PKO Law on 15 June 1992, the Japa- nese government sent for the first time three civilian...

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