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Japan-U.S. missile defense collaboration: Rhetorically delicious, deceptively dangerous

Mitchell, Gordon R (2001) Japan-U.S. missile defense collaboration: Rhetorically delicious, deceptively dangerous. Fletcher Forum of World Affairs, 25. 85 - 108. ISSN 1046-1868

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... On August 16, 1999, Masahiko Komura, Foreign Minister of Japan, and Thomas Foley, U.S. Ambassador to Japan, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to pursue joint research on missile defense technology. ... Part IV compares the dynamics of potential strategic deception in Japanese Theater Missile Defense (TMD) advocacy to Cold War patterns of discourse and strategy deployed to buoy Reagan-era BMD programs such as the Strategic Defense Initiative (SDI). ... As The Economist reported, the North Korean launch provided the stimulus needed to break the logjam on Japanese attitudes toward missile defense: "After years of dithering, the Japanese government promptly agreed to participate in America's proposed Theatre Missile Defense system . . ." ... One end result of a politically motivated decision to pursue Japanese TMD, based on doctored scientific data, could be deployment of a deeply flawed missile defense system that is technically bankrupt, yet has an illusory veneer of effectiveness. ... Another possibility is that Japanese objections against incorporation of offensive space power into a joint missile defense program could be rendered moot by strategic deception. ... The fact that Japanese leaders have already shown a proclivity to extol TMD's "purely defensive" qualities is evidence that any American export of missile defense to Japan will likely include not only technology, but also accompanying rhetorical strategies designed to politically safeguard such hardware in the crucible of public debate. ...


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Item Type: Article
Status: Published
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Mitchell, Gordon Rgordonm@pitt.eduGORDONM
Centers: University Centers > University Center for International Studies (UCIS)
Date: 2001
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Journal or Publication Title: Fletcher Forum of World Affairs
Volume: 25
Publisher: William S. Hein & Co.
Page Range: 85 - 108
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Communication: Rhetoric and Communication
School of Medicine > Clinical and Translational Science
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 1046-1868
Official URL:
Related URLs:
Article Type: Research Article
Date Deposited: 29 Oct 2012 15:50
Last Modified: 25 Aug 2017 05:06


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