The 1st Meeting of the Policy Council of JFIR on "The Change of Situations in the Middle East and the Trend of International Politics" Held

The Policy Council of JFIR, which had been dormant since its announcement of the policy recommendations on the theme of "Japan’s Energy Strategy in the Age of Globalization" in June last year, resumed its activities on November 11, 2013, initiating deliberations under the general theme of "The Change of Situations in the Middle East and the Trend of International Politics."

At the outset, Prof.Dr. ITO Kenichi, Chairman of the Policy Council, made an opening remark saying, "Since last year, with the change of situations in the international affairs, including not only the Middle East situations triggered by the 'Arab Spring' but the role of the United States, there has arisen a view that the rule of the game of international politics at large might have undergone a significant change. With this awareness in mind, the Policy Council, under the general theme of “The Change of Situations in the Middle East and the Trend of International Politics,” wishes to explore the trends of (1) the Obama administration, (2) Arab/Middle East countries, (3) Russia, China, (4) Western European countries, and then finally propose (5) the way in which Japan should respond to these changes. As for the topic (1) the trend of the Obama administration, Prof.Dr. TAKUBO Tadae, Director of JFIR, will hereafter make a keynote report." Then, Director TAKUBO made a presentation, saying, "Of late, we notice certain changes in the behavior of the United States, which has formed the core of the international order since after the World War II. Is this because of a transient behavior of the Obama administration? Or has the foreign policy of the United States as a whole returned to isolationism? Or is the power of the United States on the wane? While I have not reached a conclusion yet, let me describe the course of events which has led me to raise these questions." Subsequently, free discussion among the members of the Policy Council took place. 24 members participated in the discussion.

 

The Japan Forum on International Relations (JFIR)

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