mandag 6. mai 2024

Japan’s Diplomatic Bluebook Paints China As Central Villain

The more things change the more they stay the same. In the 2024 Diplomatic Bluebook, recently released through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Japan assertively labeled China a global threat, while still carefully trying to balance both positive and negative terms. The new edition employs much stronger language about its regional rival, characterizing Beijing’s activity in the South China Sea as “unilateral attempts to change the status quo by force or coercion.” The not-so-subtle change in the language in the new edition (as well as the previous 2023 edition) is predicated on the central theme of Beijing’s progressively coercive efforts.

The changes are also representative of the technological advancements that have altered the security dynamic in the region, as Tokyo worries about China’s dramatic increases in military spending, which the U.S. recently warned could exceed more than $700 billion.