International Humanity

A Blog Started to Record my thoughts on International News events

Japanese aid in Iraq disrupting the Balance of World Power

Posted by alexfrancis on April 1, 2007


The international state system is often associated with the rise and fall of hegemons and the states who seek to challenge these dominating states. In the current international system, the United States is clearly a hegemonic entity, as can be seen by its powerful economy, overwhelming military might, and predominant influence in international institutions such as the United Nations. Therefore, according to the balance of power theory, other states should be aligning against the U.S. in order to ensure peace and the freedom of individual nations in an anarchic world.

However, Japan has been one of the greatest supporters of the United States in the War in Iraq. In recent years, Japan has sent ground troops ground troops on an aid mission in southern Iraq and air troops to operate between Kuwait and Iraq. While Japan did pull out Japanese ground troops last summer, it has since expanded its air operations. Most recently on March 30, Japan renewed its Air Self-Defense Force deployment in Iraq to provide airlift support United Nations and multinational forces for another two years. The United States excitingly welcomed Japan’s decision of continued support in Iraq.

However, such bandwagoning activity is only a sign that Japanese foreign policy is greatly influenced by the United States. Instead of attempting to assert its own sovereignty, Japan is instead trying to snuggle close to the United States and earn favor for future policy ambitions. In this way, the U.S. hegemon is only being reinforced by states such as Japan who continue to work with the United States even in matters of warfare.

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