Japan's Foreign Policy: Maverick Moves on Defence

At a moment of great international uncertainty, Japan is to elect a new government on November 9. Faced with the nuclear threat from North Korea and challenges over Iraq, Prime Minister Junichiro Koizumi will need all his maverick leadership skills if he is to extend his authority.

The World Today Updated 21 October 2020 Published 1 November 2003 4 minute READ

Dr John Nilsson-Wright

Former Korea Foundation Korea Fellow and Senior Fellow for Northeast Asia, Asia-Pacific Programme

Junichiro Koizumi’s landslide re-election this September as president of Japan’s ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) has raised hopes of a fundamental change in the character and practice of Japanese political leadership.

In place of a long tradition of unwieldy, consensus decision-making and deference to powerful party factions and special interests, Koizumi favours a more decisive and independent style. This was much in evidence in the recent campaign.

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