Saturday, September 13, 2014

An Appreciation Of Green

Just in case anyone who read my post of yesterday thinks I am down on Dr. Michael Green, I am not. In the two-part interview he has given to Peter Ennis ( Part I , Part II ) he demonstrates his incredibly fine-grained knowledge of the political arena, policy structure and technical demands constraining the operations of the Japan-U.S. alliance. The reader may not like the assumptions Green and his counterparts make (the nonchalance in Abe's justification of reinterpretation over revision takes the breath away) but knowing that the PM, his advisor and military planners on both sides are thinking ante- and not just post-facto is reassuring.

Underappreciated also is "Japan is Back: Unbundling Abe's Grand Strategy," the analysis Dr. Green produced for the Lowy Institute (Link). I am eternally grateful for the devastating anecdote (in the "Values, History, and The Korea Problem" section) on the effect Abe's weekend golf partners have on the PM's thinking.

And yes, the above statement is true, too. My favorite opera is also by a guy named Green, for good measure.

1 comment:

ArmchairAsia said...

OK, here is the Green or at least his intern's quote:

However, Abe’s cohort has often undermined this affirmative narrative about Japan’s contemporary role with their intense desire to correct perceived abuses and exaggerations of Japan’s past role. This resentment of left-leaning groups at home and Chinese propaganda abroad formed a powerful bond among conservatives waiting in the wilderness during the DPJ years, but has proven a real liability in governing. Staffers to Abe quipped privately that in the first few months of the new administration the prime minister was a pragmatic strategist on the weekdays, but more ideological while golfing with political allies on the weekends.

The Problem is it is a myth that he is pragmatic. He is a believer and the money that comes to him and LDP is from believers. There is thus NO shared values between the US and Abe's Japan.