Category: Thomas Berger

China and Japan Reach Accord on Disputed Islands: Let’s Agree to Disagree

November 7th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, New York Times, Newsmakers, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerNew York Times (subscription required)
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

Signaling a potential thaw in their long-frozen relations, China and Japan announced Friday that they had effectively agreed to disagree over the sovereignty of disputed islands in the East China Sea and to gradually resume diplomatic and security discussions…

Expert quote:

“The overwhelming majority of Japanese, especially in the pragmatic wing of his government, have little desire for an actual conflict with Beijing. Instead, what they hope is that through a policy of strength, they can get China to moderate its policies toward Japan.”

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Japan’s Divided Education Strategy

October 12th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Newsmakers, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerNew York Times (subscription required)
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

Japan’s simultaneous embrace of nationalism and cosmopolitanism is generating ambiguous signals from its education policy makers…

Expert quote:

“There is an obvious contradiction between Japan’s rightward shift on education policy and its strivings to internationalize.”

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US-German spying row getting worse

July 10th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Newsmakers, The Hill, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerThe Hill
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

Relations between the United States and Germany sank to new depths on Wednesday as accusations emerged that a second German might have been slipping secrets to Washington. The charge rubbed salt into wounds first opened by revelations that the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) had eavesdropped on German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s cellphone — a practice President Obama has renounced…

Expert quote:

“It’s a serious issue and I think it’s one which we need to address and perhaps we could even use, as a positive note, as a stimulus for some useful reconsiderations about all the kind of things we can and should do in the realm of intelligence-gathering,”

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Japan eases limits on military

July 2nd, 2014 in 2014, Arise America, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Newsmakers, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerArise America 
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

View video expert of Thomas Berger (segment begins at approximately 15:55)

Japan Talks of Extending Security Umbrella to Southeast Asia — WSJ Blog

May 31st, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Newsmakers, Thomas Berger, Wall Street Journal 0 comments

TBergerWall Street Journal (subscription required)
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

As Southeast Asia scrambles to cope with China’s assertiveness in maritime disputes, Japanese leaders are offering themselves to the region as a strategic counterweight to Beijing…

Expert quote:

“Prime Minister Abe is seizing the day, taking advantage of the huge opportunities that China has afforded him through its assertive behavior and has heightened Japan’s profile on the world stage. His remarks will undoubtedly find a receptive audience,” Mr. Berger said. “Increasingly, the front-line states in these territorial disputes-Japan, the Philippines, and Vietnam-are working together to counter China’s growing power.”

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Japan needs military options

May 7th, 2014 in 2014, Boston Globe, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Newsmakers, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerBoston Globe (subscription required)
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

Naomi Takasu thinks her country’s constitution deserves the Nobel Peace Prize…

Expert quote:

“There is real fear about whether the US will step up to the plate if Japan is threatened by China. Japanese feel they have their backs against the wall; they see China trying to bully them.”

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Did Japanese lawmakers intend to provoke Obama by honoring war criminals?

April 23rd, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, GlobalPost, Newsmakers, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerGlobalPost
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

Years after the Obama administration announced a “deliberate and strategic decision” to pivot to Asia, the US president is trying to revive the foreign policy initiative with a trip to Japan, South Korea, Malaysia and the Philippines…

Expert quote:

“The main reason for these visits to the shrine was because of the timing of the annual spring festival. Conservative lawmakers often visit the shrine on this date, although this year’s contingent is unusually large, reflecting the large number of conservative lawmakers in the current Diet and heightened awareness of the issue.”

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Japan Stands by Apology to Its Wartime Sex Slaves

March 15th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, New York Times, Newsmakers, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerNew York Times
Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

Moving to defuse a heated diplomatic dispute over World War II-era history, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said on Friday that his government would not revise a landmark 1993 apology to women forced to work in Japanese military brothels…

Expert quote:

“Seoul continues to harbor the suspicion that the Abe government harbors revisionist views regarding Japan’s history of imperialism and colonial domination.”

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POV: Obama’s Asian Pivot in Peril?

March 11th, 2014 in 2014, BU Today, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Newsmakers, OP-EDs by BU Professors, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerBU Today
By Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

The American-Japanese security relationship has been the cornerstone of US strategy in East Asia for more than half a century. The Obama administration’s “pivot to Asia,” a multipronged effort to keep the United States active in Asian affairs, depends on keeping that relationship strong. Yet while the two countries are investing considerable effort in strengthening ties, there are signs of growing strain. Left unattended, there is a serious and growing risk of a crisis and even a rupture…

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Abe Shinzo, Yasukuni and the Recurring Tragedy of Japanese Nationalism

January 20th, 2014 in 2014, College and Graduate School of Arts and Sciences, Newsmakers, OP-EDs by BU Professors, Thomas Berger 0 comments

TBergerHistory News Network
By Thomas Berger, College of Arts & Sciences

It has been an iron law of Japanese politics that whenever Japan moves to strengthen its defense and security establishment, there has been simultaneous pressure on facing up to Japan’s wartime history…

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