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Japans policy towards India; the implications for Japanese foreign policy Victoria Tuke PhD Candidate University

of Warwick, UK This paper focuses on the developing partnership between Asias two largest democracies: Japan and India. The paper looks in particular at how the momentous change in government in Tokyo has affected this bilateral and the wider implications for Japans international strategy. It also employs a theoretical framework with applicability to other topics within the international relations field; neoclassical realism. Through neoclassical realism, structure is considered to be what sets the parameters of Japans India policy but also that the response is often shaped by domestic factors and norms, in particular policymakers perceptions. The paper argues that Japans policy towards India has been formed to a large extent by the United States, which acts as the key structural factor/constraint. However, the ideological views or perceptions of Japanese Prime Ministers in particular have also influenced the pace of development. Under both the Obama and Hatoyama administrations a different approach is being adopted with regards India. Over the course of Japans dealings with India, structural forces, whether through Cold War geopolitics or more recently concerns over the rise of China, shaped relations. Yet this situation has been mediated by other domestic factors. At the present time, relations are not framed solely around the almost adversarial alliance structure which the United States under President Bush championed. Japan, like the U.S. is currently attempting a new strategy to balance ties with China, which despite the global economic downturn, has continued to grow. This paper argues that despite a stall at the end of 2009, positive developments were witnessed during Hatoyamas visit to India in December 2009, suggesting the further strengthening of ties. Neoclassical realism is particularly applicable to Japan. Traditional frameworks such as constructivism and neo-realism have failed to adequately explain Japans foreign policy behaviour. The work of scholars such as Thomas Berger has encouraged attention to the strength of norms such as antinuclearism and pacificism when looking at Japan but over-concentrates on these factors at the expense of recognising the complex international structure through which Japanese policymakers must work. According to Waltzs neo-realism, Japan like Germany should have remilitarised during its years of economic growth in the 1970s and 1980s but has in fact retained a more meagre international presence, preferring contributions to peacekeeping efforts and a generous ODA programme. Some balance between these conflicting approaches therefore needs to be found. I believe NCR offers such an opportunity by considering both structure and domestic variables in its analysis. The approach differs from the all-encompassing analytical eclecticism of Katzenstein by placing preference on structure. The paper is organized into four parts. First, there is an overview of how relations have developed from their historical roots, before an assessment of how relations have accelerated in the past decade. The paper will then assess the role the United States has played, particularly since the inauguration of President Obama. Japans dependence on the United States; the key structural element to Japanese foreign policymaking is here apparent. The paper closes with a look at the current status of relations since the Hatoyama government assumed power with an analysis of what can hence be learnt about Japans likely future course as well as the importance of looking within a states domestic situation to understand foreign policy. For many years, scholarly interest in the bilateral relationship has been scarce, but the acceleration over the past decade to establish political and strategic ties has demanded attention. India was once

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questioned as even being a part of Asia, but exponential economic growth has led to an appreciation of Indias important role in the region. As Tokyo has developed its strategy on what role to play in an ever-changing region, recognition of the potential of India has grown. Background Historically Japans ties with India have been weak. Cultural links date back to the sixth century when Buddhism reached the shores of Japan from India through China.1 A friendship between the Bengali Nobel Laureate Tagore and Okura Tenshin is often cited in diplomatic rhetoric to promote the idea of cultural closeness but in reality contact was small. For many decades both Indians and Japanese considered each other distant neighbours with stereotypical and often prejudiced views of one another. In the economic field, trade has been minimal but shown a gradual rise since 2003, tripling from a mediocre US$ 4.0 billion in 2002 to US$12 billion in 2008-9.2 The objective to reach $20 billion by 2010 looks unlikely as plans for a FTA are currently in their 12th round of negotiations.3 Japanese companies aversion to risk and criticisms of Indias poor infrastructure has continued to dampened trade relations. Nevertheless, the number of Japanese companies investing in India has more than doubled in the past three years. Japan has contributed with several infrastructure projects in the region, most notably the Delhi Metro and Delhi-Mumbai Freight Corridor announced in 2007. Political links have been particularly low. Two interesting exceptions were during the Indian independence movement when the freedom fighter Rash Behari Bose spent many years in Japan seeking not only Indian independence but to broaden pan-Asianist thought between Japan and India (Murthy, 1986).4 Encouraged by Japans victory over Russia in 1905,5 Bose eventually convinced the later Prime Minister, Tojo Hideki to support the Indian anti-colonial cause. Japanese forces joined the nascent Indian National Army (INA) in the U Go Offensive at Manipur, suffering heavy losses at the Battles of Imphal and Kohima.6 Cordial relations followed the cessation of war when India refused to sign the US-drafted San Francisco Peace Treaty, signing a separate agreement on June 9 (ratified on August 27) instead.7 In addition, in what later became a rallying call for Japans ultra-nationalists, the Indian judge Justice Radhabinod Pal offered the only dissenting verdict at the International Military Tribunal for the Far East.

Gary P. Leupp, Interracial Intimacy in Japan: Western Men and Japanese Women, 1543-1900, (London; Continuum International Publishing Group, 2003), p. 37 2 Prakash Nanda, India and Japan: Strategic convergence, UPI Asia Online, 30 December 2009, http://www.upiasia.com/Politics/2009/12/30/india_and_japan_strategic_convergence/7836/ 3 Rajaram Panda, Convergence of Strategic Interests between India and Japan, IDSA Comment, 7 January 2010, http://www.idsa.in/idsacomments/ConvergenceofStrategicInterestsbetweenIndiaandJapan_rpanda_070110 4 P. A. Narashima Murthy, India and Japan: Dimensions of Their Relations. Historical and Political (New Delhi: ABC Pub. House, 1986), pp. 85-98 5 According to Jain and Todhunter (1996; 86) this was widely celebrated for, destroying the myth of European supremacy over Asian and serving as a mighty inspiration for Indian nationalists who were struggling to free their country from British rule. 6 The battle lasted from March to July 1944 and marked the turning point of the Burma campaign, signalling the end of the Japanese offensive on this front. For further detail, see Joyce Chapman Lebra, The Indian National Army and Japan, (Singapore; Institute of Southeast Asian Studies, 2008). This study looks at the origins of the INA through the imagination of Iwaichi Fujiwara, a young Japanese intelligence officer and the relationship between the Japanese Imperial Army and Indian National Army. 7 Toshio Yamanouchi, Eternal Friends, Natural Partners, Kamlendra Kanwar (ed.), India-Japan: Towards a New Era, (New Delhi, UBS, 1992)

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The advent of the Cold War highlighted the diametrically opposite political orientations (Murthy, 1986) of Japan and India.8 The structure of the international system proved inhospitable to close political relations. Japan, as a newly defeated nation, shied away from involvement in international moral and political issues focusing on economic development, particularly through trade with Southeast Asia. Invigorated by independence, New Delhi championed the voice of newly independent nations in Asia, Africa and Latin America, whilst protecting infant industries and shunning international trade. The end of bipolarity and launch of Indias ambitious economic liberalisation led to some cause for optimism. The structural impediment of Cold War rivalry had been overturned but it was only in August 2000, when Prime Minister Mori of Japan visited India, that a rapprochement between governments began, marking the catalyst of a new chapter in India-Japan relations.9 Japans relations with India hit their lowest ebb in May 1998 when India, followed soon after by Pakistan, tested their nuclear capabilities. Despite any structural motivations to improve ties, Japans domestic pacifism, particularly the strength of the norm of anti-nuclearism led Tokyo to enforce not only stern verbal condemnation but also the practical punishments, independent of the U.S. response. Economically Tokyo froze new grants and yen loans and withdrew an offer to host the annual India Development Forum (IDF). Politically Tokyo called on the United Nations to issue a resolution condemning the tests, attempted to act as mediator in the Kashmir dispute (seen as interference by New Delhi) and include Pakistan in the forthcoming ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF).10 Japan-India relations henceforth entered their darkest years. Following Moris visit, however, meetings between prime ministers grew, in addition to VIP visits, including exchanges between Defence and Coastguard authorities multiplied. In 2008, in the run-up to the signing of a strategic agreement, several commentators referred to the blossoming partnership as one which would have a critical bearing on the newly emerging Asian economic and security architecture with the potential of becoming a major variable for the stability of Asia. What brought such a change in policy? Answering this question forms the basis of this research. Thus far, developments in the structural contours of Asia can be held widely responsible. This can also be seen in more recent relations. Following a period of stagnation last year whilst the Obama administrations focus was elsewhere and Japan settled into a new government after over fifty years of LDP rule, however, Japan-India relations are once again looking promising. The salience which United States support continues to wield on Japanese policymaking is evident but so too is the importance of perceptions in India. The Role of the United States Japans alliance with the United States has consistently represented the centre-piece of foreign policy. Americas policy towards India has therefore provided significant influence over the attitudes and decisions of policymakers in Tokyo. It is no coincidence that when the U.S. was embroiled in Cold War power politics, Indo-Japanese political relations were weak; Washington had made the strategic decision to strengthen relations with Pakistan over India. When in 2000, America shifted its focus in the region towards India, Tokyo dutifully followed suit. Indeed, the landmark visit by President Mori to India tracked almost the exact same itinerary as that of President Clinton earlier in the year.11
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Murthy, India and Japan, pp. 344-345 Kapur cited in Rajaram Panda and Yoo Fukazawa (eds.) India and Japan: In Search of Global Roles (2007) 10 The final measure was seen as a particularly direct snub on India. The fact that Tokyos reaction to Chinas nuclear tests in 1996 was seen as another injustice levied at New Delhi. 11 st Rajaram Panda, India and Japan in the new century, South Asia in 21 Century: India, Her Neighbours and the Great Powers (New Delhi, South Asian Pub., 2003), p. 266 Rajaram Panda

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It was under the Bush administration when the structure was most hospitable, however, that JapanIndia relations markedly developed. The U.S. grew increasingly wary of Chinas growth and the implications for U.S. interests in Asia. In 2001, a study by the RAND Cooperation concluded that, The United States must begin to formulate a strategy aimed at a pivotal long-term objective: preventing the worsening of the security situation in Asia. Central to this objective is the need to preclude the rise of a regional and continental hegemon. Rather than contain China, however, U.S. policy sought to strengthen its current allies in the region and seek new potential balancing partners. This approach, it was hoped, would defend U.S. interests in the region without overtly antagonising Beijing. As early as Bushs presidential campaign in 2000, the goal was work toward the day when the fellowship of free Pacific nations is as strong and united as our Atlantic partnership. Washington sought to strengthen its allies, most notably Japan and India through encouraging the further normalization of Japan and acting as midwife to the birth of a new great power12 in India, pushing through the landmark nuclear deal and convincing the world that such a pact benefited the international community. Japans adherence to U.S. lead can be clearly seen in Japans weakening of its once stern policy towards India as a nuclear state. As noted above, Japans response in 1998 to Indias nuclearisation was severe. A decade later, when the U.S. endorsed Indias nuclear status, Tokyos reaction was more muted. Of course there was still opposition but lessons had been learnt that having India as a nuclear state, if allied with the U.S .provided a far better alternative than Japan itself going nuclear.13 Officials in Japan assured reporters that this time they would not obstruct the deal if there was a broad consensus in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG)14 contributing tacitly to bringing India in from the self-imposed international cold. Under these conditions of U.S. support, Tokyo was most able to work bilaterally with New Delhi on a number of shared concerns; the most salient being China. Tensions with China have long-occupied Indias foreign policy. Relations were among their weakest in 1962 following Indias defeat in the Sino-Indian Border War but gradually improved in the following decades. Of the structural changes brought by the end of the Cold War, the rise of China is of greatest concern to India.15 Disputes over the Himalayan border, the state of Arunachal Pradesh and energy competition have persisted. India perceives China as posing a potential if not actual threat to Indian interests16 through an apparent string of pearls encirclement which has seen China supply defence equipment, investment and aid to states like Sri Lanka and Burma, infiltrating what India considers its natural sphere of interest. Sino-Japanese ties have also continued to be fragile. For several years, the decline of Japans economic muscle and Chinas corresponding growth had fed Japanese insecurities. During the Koizumi premiership this was most acute. Consistent double-digit increases in Chinas military spending conflicted with concerns in Beijing that the U.S. was encouraging Japan to remilitarise. Whist relations in this period were economically hot, controversy over Koizumis annual visits to the Yasukuni shrine in
Edward Luce, In Spite of the Gods: The Strange Rise of Modern India (London: Little and Brown, 2006), p. 281 cited in Daniel Twining, Americas Grand Design in Asia, Washington Quarterly, May 31, 2007, p. 82 13 The author would like to thank Professor Tsuneo Akaha for elucidating this point 14 Kyodo News, Japan backs U.S.-India nuke deal, Japan Today, September 9, 2008, http://www.japantoday.com/category/politics/view/japan-backs-us-india-nuke-deal 15 Manish Dabhade, India and East Asia: A Region Rediscovered, Harsh V. Pant, (ed.), Indian Foreign Policy in a Unipolar World, (London; Routledge, 2008) 16 Devin T Hagerty, India and the Global Balance of Power: A Neorealist Snapshot, Harsh V. Pant, (ed.), Indian Foreign Policy in a Unipolar World, (London; Routledge, 2008), p. 38
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Tokyo and Chinese anger that Japans apologies for wartime behaviour were insincere resulted in fierce anti-Japanese and anti-Chinese demonstrations in 2005. Japans elite have bluntly stated the role of China, this structural reality, in Japans India strategy. According to Japans former Deputy Head of Mission to the Embassy in India, Wataru Nishigahiro, the relationship with India is important, partly because of the factor of emerging China. We are not confronting against China, but we have to manage the relationship with China carefully. And in that process, our relationship with India becomes more meaningful. Even former Prime Minister Taro Aso, during his tenure as Foreign Minister admitted that India served a useful function in balancing against China. 17 India and Japan also believe China to be actively opposing their rise. China has posed continued opposition to the expansion of the United Nations Security Council to include India and Japan as permanent members.18 Recent developments During the early months of Obamas premiership, discourse flourished over how the U.S. would approach Asia. Among the major states in the region, Japan, India and China all hoped for continuity rather than the change promised in election rhetoric in both political and importantly trade policy.19 Clintons spring tour 2009 of Asian capitals marked a tangible shift in U.S. policy. Whilst the U.S. showed itself keen to remain relevant to the region, Clintons visit indicated the significance of other countries within Asia. The early months of the Obama administration strongly suggested that JapanIndia relations would be far from a foreign policy priority. The perception of the new administration (a key element of NCR) therefore acted as a variable in how American foreign policy was designed in contrast to the more caged approach deemed necessary by President Bsh. Hillary Clintons Japan passing' For Japan, the most troubling aspect was the shift from Bushs policy of viewing China as a strategic competitor whilst strengthening relations with Beijings regional rivals, to engaging directly with Beijing.20 Prior to taking office, many in Japan suspected such an alignment following Clintons focus on China in a 2007 article in Foreign Affairs. Commentators analysed minute details of Obamas early days in office21 speculating on among other slights that greater concern was given to the appointment of an ambassador in Beijing than Tokyo or New Delhi.22
Takako Hirose, Japanese Emerging Nationalism and Its New Asia Policy, in V.R. Raghavan (ed.) Asian Security Dynamic: US, Japan & the Rising Powers (New Delhi and Chicago: Promilla & Co. Publishers, 2008), p. 59 18 India and Japan: newfound intimacy 19 Hiroko Nakata and Takahiro Fukada, Japan to Obama: Stay far away from trade issues, Japan Times Online, January 22, 2009, http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nb20090122a1.html 20 Ms Clinton and U.S. strategy, Editorial, Japan Times Online, February 25, 2009, http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/ed20090225a2.html 21 Jun Hongo, Tokyo juiced up for Clinton visit, Japan Times Online, February 15, 2009, http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20090215a2.html 22 Robert Dujarric and Weston S. Konishi, Incoming ambassador Roos is right for the job, Japan Times Online, June 17, 2009 http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/eo20090617a1.html Dujarric and Konishi claim, Joseph Nye was considered a more heavyweight ambassador for Tokyo than John Roos, with Brahama Chellenay adding that While Obama named John Huntsman the Utah state governor and a rising Republican star seen even as a potential 2012 rival to the president as his ambassador to China, he picked obscure former Congressman Timothy Roemer as envoy to India and a low-profile Internet and biotechnology lawyer, John Roos, as ambassador to Japan. Obama underlined China's centrality in his foreign
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As the administration settled, Clinton plainly spoke of building a strong relationship with China as her central goal,23 further stating that the U.S. wished to broaden its strategic dialogue with Beijing to include security and economic interests. 24 Whilst Sino-US relations have suffered considerable difficulties in recent months over such issues as the imprisonment of political dissidents, trade battles, climate change policy and the endless tensions over Tibet and Taiwan, this had not yet coincided with stronger US-Japan relations, which have also frayed. India a return to the subcontinent For India, one of the most striking variations between the Bush and Obama administrations is their perception of India. Commentators predicted that a McCain presidency would have adopted the Armitage approach followed by its predecessor of managing the rise of China through working with current allies and new partners.25 During the presidential campaign Obama left little doubt that South Asia would be a foreign policy priority of his administration.26 Crucially, however, this has not concerned India as much as it has the newly termed AfPak (Afghanistan and Pakistan).27 The de-hyphenation of India from Pakistan was considered a major diplomatic achievement of Bush, which many fear has now been reinstated with U.S. focus on counterinsurgency in the AfPak region and resurrection of the Kashmir issue. Within days of inauguration many of these concerns were realised through a number of perceived snubs on India.28 The greatest was Clintons decision to skip India on her first tour of Asia.29 This India passing was reminiscent of a similar slight to that given to Japan by Secretary Clintons husband who as president in 1998 neglected to visit Japan as a part of a visit to China. High level contacts have become much less frequent. The diplomatic discourse between Washington and New Delhi has also been downgraded. Mention of a strategic partnership, voiced by Bush has been replaced by references to India as a provider of security and partner, crucially omitting mention of any strategic element to relations.30
policy by personally announcing his choice of Huntsman. In contrast, Roemer and Roos were among a slew of ambassadors named in an official news release. Brahama Chellaney, Dancing with the dragon, Japan Times Online, June 25, 2009, http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/eo20090625bc.html 23 Clinton stresses key China goals, BBC News Online, September 11, 2009, http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/asia-pacific/8249824.stm 24 Philip Stephens, Diplomatic feint that looks to leave Japan in the cold, Financial Times, February 26, 2009, http://www.ft.com/cms/s/0/2124278c-0437-11de-845b-000077b07658.html 25 John McCain and Joseph Liberman, Renewing America's Asia Policy, Wall Street Journal Asia, May 27, 2008, http://online.wsj.com/article/SB121183670827020887.html 26 Harsh V. Pant, Obama magic unlikely to work with India, Japan Times Online, February 1, 2009, http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/eo20090201a2.html 27 Paul Kapur interview with Kamla Bhatt, Obamas South Asian Policy, Kamla Show, June 17, 2009, http://kamlashow.com/podcast/2009/06/17/prof-paul-kapur-obamas-south-asian-policy/ 28 Among the slights identified by observers in India was the omission of India from Obamas inaugural list of foreign policy partners and absence of an introductory phone call from Obama to Prime Minister Singh whilst both the President of Pakistan and China were included. Indian officials also fought hard to exclude India from Richard Holbrookes mandate which eventually included just Afghanistan and Pakistan. The suggestion by Obama to send Bill Clinton as special envoy and mediator for Kashmir only disturbed India further. Whilst many in India view the former President positively, the intervention was not appreciated in New Delhi but welcomed in Islamabad.28 29 According to some reports, Clinton initially planned to visit India on this tour but this was not followed through. Harsh V. Pant, Indias newfound irrelevance to Washington, Japan Times Online, March 20, 2009, http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/eo20090320a1.html 30 U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates cited from a speech at the 2009 Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore; In the coming years, we look to India to be a partner and net provider of security in the Indian Ocean and beyond,

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The above developments suggested an apparent indifference in Obamas outlook to Indias strategic potential temporarily, which damaged Japan-India ties. Additional variables: India A Cautious Ally An additional factor to consider is of course the perspective of policymakers in New Delhi. On this issue it can be seen that whilst India shares many of Japans concerns regarding Chinas rise, their approach to containing, balancing or in other ways dealing with the reality, differs from that of Tokyo. To look solely at the structure of the international system whilst ignoring individual interests of states involved would be unwise. Remnants of New Delhis non-alignment strategy persist in addition to fears of the reaction from Beijing. Following the first naval drill, the Indian defence ministry was also keen to stress that exercises with China, Russia and Vietnam were scheduled to further avoid the perception of an alliance.31 In addition, India and Japan continue to differ in their perceptions of allying with each other. Economic interests are central to Indias foreign policy with trade and investment shaping Indias diplomacy since the launch in 1991 of a Look East policy. 32 Japan in contrast has been primarily concerned with security interests with economic issues as a still important secondary concern. This is evident in the rhetoric employed by each government; as Tokyo talks of an Arc of Freedom and Prosperity, New Delhi calls for an Arc of Advantage and Prosperity. Policymakers have taken gradual steps to commit to political alliances but India remains hesitant and an uncomfortable ally. The internal political struggle to adopt the U.S. Nuclear Deal, which almost cost Prime Minister Singh his position, demonstrates the limitations facing India when engaging with the region. India is determined not to join an anti-China coalition and to defend its pledge to non-alignment. India was always uneasy with Bushs rhetoric, which grouped nations into blocs against one another. This is an interesting reversal from just a few decades earlier when Japans foreign policy was directed by economic growth and India followed ideological goals. India has at least been consistent in its recent policy. When Prime Minister Singh addressed the Diet in 2006 he stated that Economic ties must be the bedrock of our relationship.33 Prior to the official visit by S.M Krishna, Minister of External Affairs of India to Japan in July 2009, the Japanese MOFA underlined the purpose of the visit being to exchange views concerning the cooperation between the two countries toward regional and international challenges. 34 Media reports from India that followed stressed the trade and climate change negotiations discussed; in particular the progress of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement and plans to fast track the Dedicated Freight Corridor.35 The term bedrock was again used by Singh in December 2009 during Hatoyamas visit to India.
http://www.iiss.org/whats-new/iiss-in-the-press/may-2009/us-looking-at-india-as-provider-of-security-in-indianocean/ 31 Agence-France Presse, Japan, U.S. and India Hold Naval Drills, Navy News, April 16, 2007, http://www.defencetalk.com/japan-us-and-india-hold-naval-drills-11261/ 32 For a discussion of Indias renewed relations with the other nations in East Asia, see Satu P. Limaye, IndiaEast Asia Relations: Indias Latest Asian Incarnation, Policy Forum Online, Nautilus Institute, November 30, 2000, http://www.nautilus.org/fora/security/0008A_Limaye.html 33 Manish Dabhade, India and East Asia: A Region Rediscovered, Harsh V. Pant, (ed.), Indian Foreign Policy in a Unipolar World, (London; Routledge, 2008) 34 Visit to Japan by H.E. Mr S.M. Krishna, Minister of External Affairs of India, Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan, June 29, 2009, http://www.mofa.go.jp/announce/event/2009/6/1193437_1160.html 35 India, Japan agree to fast track work on freight and industrial corridors, Andhra News, July 3, 2009, http://www.andhranews.net/Business/2009/July/3-India-Japan-agree-15143.asp

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Japanese Executive Leadership Whilst the structural factor of U.S. policy is fundamental to understanding the context for Japans interest in India, it falls short of explaining the exact timing and nature of Tokyos decision-making. It is also necessary to employ intervening variables which have contributed and complicated the current state of relations. The most significant of these has been attitudes of key policymakers, particularly the ruling party and Prime Minister, in decision-making. Similar to the neo-realist school, neoclassical realists believe foreign policy to be dictated by the states position in the international system and its relative material power capabilities. 36 Foreign policy decisions, however, whilst reliant on material power, are mitigated by how that power is perceived by those who orchestrate it; statesmen.37 Since policy decisions are made by political leaders and elites, this human factor can be as significant as genuine capabilities.38 By looking briefly at Japans executive leadership over the past decade one can appreciate the salience of the DPJ and Hatoyamas influence. As will be seen, as Hatoyamas political outlook has been clarified, it appears that India will continue to play an important role in Japans foreign policy strategy. Prime Minister Moris visit to India in 2000 represented the catalyst for the modern strengthening of ties. However, in relation to Japans initiative following that of Clinton and considering interesting evidence that Mori himself had little specific enthusiasm towards India,39 resulted in limited concrete progress in the immediate months and years. Koizumis tenure between 2001 and 2006 marked a significant break from previous administrations but his interest in India can be attributed to predominantly populist concerns rather than a desire to construct a meaningful alliance. In the face of souring relations with China as noted above, Japanese policymakers were forced to reassess the political landscape. India, with no historical baggage or border disputes provided a suitable opportunity. In this context, Koizumi visited India towards the end of his time in office in 2005.40 It was not therefore just a structural consideration for Koizumi to seek to ameliorate relations with New Delhi. It was also a domestic political calculation to avert attention from the souring of Sino-Japanese feeling. Shinzo Abe who succeeded Koizumi, provided the greatest clarification of Japans India policy and maintained India in his international approach for several reasons. Justice Pals favourable view of Japans wartime past in particular suited Abes nationalist leanings. There is also evidence that Abes grandfather, Nobusuke Kishi, former Prime Ministers links with India, having visited in 1957, left a deep impression on his association with the sub-continent.41 In this period Japan-India ties accelerated as
An example of this approach can be seen in William C Wohlforth, The Elusive Balance, Power and Perception during the Cold War, (Ithaca; Cornell University Press, 1992), which analysis Soviet and American power during the Cold War decades. 37 Classical realism acknowledged the impact of individuals, just as they have noted domestic factors but as Juha Mononen (2008) recognises, whilst in classical realism human nature is a constant, for NCR it can shape other factors as an intervening variable. 38 Paul Kowert and Jeffrey Legro, Norms, Identity and Their Limits: A Theoretical Reprise, in Katzenstein, Peter J., The Culture of National Security: Norms and Identity in World Politics, (New York; Columbia University Press, 1996) 39 th Authors interview with Professor Takako Hirose, June 13 , 2009 40 th Authors interview with Professor Takenori Horimoto, June 25 , 2009 41 PM Kishi also received Jawaharlal Nehru in Tokyo later in 1957. Vibhav Kant Upadhyay, founder-chairman of the NGO India Center, is also reported to have close ties with Ab
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can be seen in one instance by the exchange of official visits. During the 1990s, there were only four recorded visits by Japanese officials to China and India but between 2000 and 2008 whilst visits to China only increased to seven, those to India surged to twenty-five. Twenty-two Indian VIPs made reciprocal visits to Tokyo.42 Whilst official visits and rhetoric might not appear significant in themselves, they send strong messages to the political and business communities as to how the government views relations with a country. Fukuda rejected the Arc of Freedom and Prosperity initiative of Abe in favour of ameliorating Sino relations but the concept was rejuvenated under Taro Aso who had served as Foreign Minister during the Abe government. In July 2009 in a speech in Tokyo, Aso called for the reinvigoration of the arc initiative. Yet the quagmire of political uncertainty surrounding his premiership prevented Aso from pushing through any major foreign policy plans in his final months in office. He was also unable to reciprocate PM Singhs visit to India promised for October 2009. The Democratic Party of Japan 2009 was a year of change. In fact, the official buzzword for the year was seikan kotai, (regime change). The DPJ win impacted almost every facet of Japan, including foreign relations with India. Prior to assuming office, the foreign policy of the Democratic Party of Japan was open to speculation. Observers took a wait and see attitude, expecting a clear strategy for the future to be soon articulated. Originally the DPJ were predicted to dull Japans policy towards India. Despite Hatoyamas intensions for an East Asian community and greater regional integration,43 no public references were made to India as being among these Asian ties. The DPJs 2005 manifesto included several positive references to India as a nucleus of Asian economic development in the 21st century and stating that maintaining a close relationship, including strategic, with this India will be in the national interests of Japan and will expand Japan's diplomatic options.44 The document also clarified support for Indias inclusion in the EAS. By August 2009, however, all these references had disappeared. Policymakers in New Delhi looked on with caution, fearing Hatoyama would fail to continue the practice of reciprocal summit meetings. Tensions with the U.S. over base relocation took priority with Japan-China and JapanAustralia relations predicted to follow.45 Recent developments, however, suggest that Japan will also continue to strengthen ties with India. Japans relations with Australia have suffered recently over the whaling issue and statements made recently by the Japanese delegation to India indicate a more substantial plan for security than that signed with Canberra.46

Suheenra Kulkarni, When 80 000 Japanese said Namaste Indi, Indian Express, September 24, 2006, http://www.indianexpress.com/news/when-80-000-japanese-said-namaste-india/13340/ 42 Hayoun Ryou, India-Japan Security Cooperation: Chinese Perceptions, IPCS Issue Brief, N 89 (January 2009) 43 Yukio Hatoyama, A New Path for Japan, New York Times, August 26, 2009, http://www.nytimes.com/2009/08/27/opinion/27iht-edhatoyama.html 44 The National Image and Foreign Policy Vision Aimed for by the DPJ, The Democratic Party of Japan, 9 April, 2005, http://www.dpj.or.jp/english/vision/document.pdf, p. 7 45 According to Peter Drysdale, Hatoyama and Rudd share a conservative social democratic view of the world. Kede Lawson, Hatoyama good for Australia ties: experts, Japan Times Online, September 16, 2009, http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/nn20090916a4.html Defense pact with Australia eyed, Japan Times Online, September 21, 2009, link no longer available 46 Aurelia George Mulgan, Asias new strategic partnerships, East Asia Forum, 20 January 2010, http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2010/01/20/asias-new-strategic-partnerships/

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The foreign policy of the DPJ appears more pragmatic than ideological. Practical topics such as the swift conclusion of the Comprehensive Economic Partnership Agreement (CEPA) were central to recent talks between Prime Minister Singh and Hatoyama. As noted above, PM Singh has continued to speak of the relationship as having its bedrock in an economic partnership. There have also been developments in the field of security. Within the Action Plan announced following Hatoyamas visit, a new 2 + 2 dialogue at the sub-Cabinet senior official level, including foreign affairs and defence ministries was established, as well as an annual strategic dialogue at the foreign minister level, regular consultations between national security advisers, and regular meetings between defence ministers.47 Also on the defence side, the exchange of officials has continued and in October 2009 a Japan-India Maritime Security Dialogue was launched. Public opinion of Japan in India also remains strong.48 On the nuclear issue, the two governments continue to disagree in several areas. Prime Minister Singh did, however, indicate in December 2009 that should both the United States and China sign the CTBT a new situation will emerge suggesting that India itself might then sign.49 As several experts have noted, this marks a significant development in Indias nuclear policy. The DPJ government has also begun to debate the policy of no-first use (NFU), much to Indias approval. Rumours that Japan might commit to some level of nuclear commerce with India also point to an intriguing development in Japans nuclear policy. Singh has continued to defend Indias impeccable record in nuclear non-proliferation whilst Hatoyama made suggestions that should the Fissile Material Cut-off Treaty (FMCT) be concluded, the enormous scope for such high-technology trade might emerge. 50 With Obamas popularity at an all-time low, it is unlikely that the U.S. will sign the CTBT this year, indicating the still vital role of United States support. Singhs comments nevertheless are a positive development. The initiative for these latest developments seems to have come primarily from the Japanese side rather than New Delhi. Indias relatively stable recovery from the economic downturn has likely also influenced perceptions in Japan that India will continue to rival China as the power to watch in the coming century. India may well have been hesitant at first with a Japan not as closely aligned to the United States and therefore a less secure hedge against China. It appears, however, that India now appreciates the benefits of Tokyos distance from Washington as providing a more sustainable equilibrium of power. The domestic reception to a change in Japans nuclear policy is likely to become a key variable as Japans relations with India develop further. Japan remains an anti-nuclear country, despite isolated comments from within the political elite suggesting that Japan should keep going nuclear as an option. Close analysis of how Hatoyamas rhetoric in this area equates to policy is required. The DPJ approach offers both continuity and change. Hatoyamas visit built on initiatives of Koizumi, Abe and Aso whilst differing the context through which cooperation would operate. Rather than framing the relationship in as part of a quadrilateral or arc, this time relations are purely bilateral. For India, still
Joint Statement by Prime Minister Dr. Yukio Hatoyama and Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh New Stage of Japan-India Strategic and Global Partnership, Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan, 29 December 2009, http://www.mofa.go.jp/region/asia-paci/india/pmv0912/joint.html 48 In February 2009 the MOFA conducted an opinion poll in India on the image of Japan. The results showed that most Indians have a positive image of Japan, with 76% of respondents saying they perceived the current state of Japan-India relations either as being very friendly or friendly. http://www.mofa.go.jp/ICSFiles/afieldfile/2009/05/08/E.pdf 49 Japan wants India to sign CTBT, PM puts onus on US, China, Indian Express, 29 December 2009, http://www.indianexpress.com/news/japan-wants-india-to-sign-ctbt-pm-puts-onus/561027/ 50 Panda, Convergence of Strategic Interests between India and Japan
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wedded to the concept of non-alignment, this was a welcome development. The rhetoric of universal values has also been weakened in preference of a focus on economic development. Prime Minister Hatoyama, Foreign Minister Okada and Secretary-General Ozawa are all committed to improving relations with China but thus far it appears that this will not be at the expense of Japan-India ties. Indeed in order to achieve true stability in the region, all three powers need to work together towards their many shared objectives. Conclusions In conclusion, there is a great deal to be learnt about Japans international strategy from looking at Japans relations with India. As has been discussed above, the Hatoyama administration is currently operating a careful balancing act between placating the United States whilst also strengthening ties with its Asian neighbours. In several ways this makes pragmatic sense. The failure of the Quad initiative demonstrated the flaws of such a grouping and preference for a less-ideologically focused diplomacy. The extent to which the Japanese administration depends on the structural reality of U.S. favour remains significant. This limitation, however, should not be seen in a vacuum. Whilst at times lack of U.S. support has appeared a potential obstacle, the DPJs stance with Washington suggests aspects of a more independently-minded and implemented foreign policy. Hatoyama and prime ministers before him have shown initiative in strengthening ties with India, dependent on their perceptions of Indias value as a security partner and the threat from China. It is hence hoped that this research will add to the growing body of literature which appreciates the role of perceptions, whether accurate or otherwise, in how foreign policy decisions are made. Possible cooperation in the field of nuclear technology in particular is an issue to watch but from the present time, it is evident that under the new Hatoyama administration, Japan-India relations will continue to blossom.

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