Online Meeting The Current State and Challenges of the U.S.-Japan Relationship Christopher B. Johnstone, CSIS

July 28, 2022

Zoom Webinar

Christopher B. Johnstone, Senior Adviser and Japan Chair at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) was invited to speak on the above topic to KKC member corporations. Prior to joining CSIS, Mr. Johnstone served in government for 25 years in a variety of senior positions with a focus on U.S. policy toward Japan and the Indo-Pacific.

Mr. Johnstone emphasized that the leadership of Prime Minister Kishida has been an impressive force for Washington. He pointed out that his strong stance on issues, in particular, his response to the Russian invasion of Ukraine was very significant for President Biden and the U.S. government as a whole. He said that Japan joined the G7 and EU in swiftly imposing sanctions, export controls, financial controls and financial sanctions and won a lot of respect from the White House.

Mr. Johnstone described the level of alignment between the U.S. and Japan as amazing and that there has never been a time when the U.S. and Japan have been so aligned as today. He stated that there are no difficult bilateral issues that dominate the relationship and looking forward, the stage is set for a robust and challenging agenda for U.S. and Japan in the region. The U.S.-Japan relationship is exceptionally close and there is a big agenda on the plate, both on the national security and economic side. Much of the focus will be on diplomacy with China, North Korea issues, trilateral cooperation between the U.S., Japan and Korea and other issues such as defensive national security, including counter attack capability and economic security. Mr. Johnstone concluded that some of the issues will not be easy, but the strength of the relationship will do much to ensure that the outcomes will be positive.