On June 24, 2013, the Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA, Sasakawa Peace Foundation, and the Center for Strategic and International Studies launched a major new project, “The U.S.-Japan Commission on the Future of the Alliance,” in Tokyo. The Commission is composed of two groups, one in Japan led by former Ambassador to the United States Ryozo Kato and one in the United States led by Ambassador Richard Armitage and Dr. John Hamre. The Commission will work over the next three years to develop recommendations to ensure the alliance is ready for the challenges of the twenty first century.
As Ambassador Kato said in introducing the Tokyo discussions, “The U.S.-Japan alliance remains the bulwark for peace and prosperity in the Asia Pacific and will remain so for the foreseeable future.” Ambassador Armitage remarked on “the essential nature of the alliance and the need for the two leading democracies in the region to ensure its continued vitality,” while Dr. Hamre noted that “the region has undergone momentous change over the last half century, but the U.S.-Japan partnership has never been more critical than now.”
In commenting on the Commission, Jiro Hanyu, Chairman of The Sasakawa Peace Foundation, said, “I’m pleased that at the first joint meeting of the Commission in Tokyo, the group was able to cover a great number of issues and lay out a roadmap for the forthcoming work of the Commission. We also issued a consensus document, what we are calling the Commission’s Charter, listing our goals and some of the specific topics we will discuss.”
During their first meeting, the Commission met for one and one-half days of discussion at the Hotel Okura in Tokyo. The American Commissioners also visited Prime Minister Abe to provide him with an overview of the discussions and a copy of the Charter.
Alliance Project Charter
• Richard Armitage, Armitage International L.C.; CSIS Trustee
• Aaron Friedberg, Princeton University
• Michael Green, CSIS and Associate Professor, Georgetown University
• Jiro Hanyu, Sasakawa Peace Foundation
• John Hamre, CSIS
• Ryozo Kato, Former Ambassador of Japan to the United States
• Joseph Nye Jr., John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University; CSIS Trustee
• Yukio Okamoto, Okamoto Associates
• Ryouichi Oriki, Former Chief of Staff, Joint Staff
• Masashi Nishihara, Research Institute for Peace and Security
• Koji Tanami, Former Administrative Vice Minister, Ministry of Finance and former President, Japan Bank for International Cooperation