Japanese Society and the Politics of the North Korean Threat

By Seung Hyok Lee

© 2016

In 1998 and in 2006, North Korea conducted ballistic missile tests that landed dangerously close to Japan. In the first case, the North Korean tests provoked only Japanese alarm and severely constrained action. In the second, the tests led to unilateral economic sanctions – the first time since the end of the Second World War that Japan has used coercion against a neighboring state. What explains this dramatic shift in policy choice?

Seung Hyok Lee argues that the 2006 sanctions were not a strategic response to the missile tests, but a reflection of changing public attitudes towards North Korea – the result of the shocking revelation that the North Koreans had abducted at least seventeen Japanese citizens in the 1970s and 80s and secretly held them prisoner for decades. Japanese Society and the Politics of the North Korean Threat is the first book on this development in English and a valuable case study of public opinion’s increasing influence on Japanese security policy.

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Product Details

  • Series: Japan and Global Society
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 200 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.5in x 0.5in x 9.3in
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SKU# SP004353

  • PUBLISHED FEB 2016

    From: $37.50

    Regular Price: $50.00

    ISBN 9781442630345
  • PUBLISHED FEB 2016

    From: $37.50

    Regular Price: $50.00

Quick Overview

Japanese Society and the Politics of the North Korean Threat explains the dramatic shift in Japanese policy between the North Korean ballistic missile tests of 1998 and 2006.

Japanese Society and the Politics of the North Korean Threat

By Seung Hyok Lee

© 2016

In 1998 and in 2006, North Korea conducted ballistic missile tests that landed dangerously close to Japan. In the first case, the North Korean tests provoked only Japanese alarm and severely constrained action. In the second, the tests led to unilateral economic sanctions – the first time since the end of the Second World War that Japan has used coercion against a neighboring state. What explains this dramatic shift in policy choice?

Seung Hyok Lee argues that the 2006 sanctions were not a strategic response to the missile tests, but a reflection of changing public attitudes towards North Korea – the result of the shocking revelation that the North Koreans had abducted at least seventeen Japanese citizens in the 1970s and 80s and secretly held them prisoner for decades. Japanese Society and the Politics of the North Korean Threat is the first book on this development in English and a valuable case study of public opinion’s increasing influence on Japanese security policy.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • Series: Japan and Global Society
  • Division: Scholarly Publishing
  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 200 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.5in x 0.5in x 9.3in
  • Reviews

    “Seung Hyok Lee thoroughly and convincingly documents how the abduction issue triggered a major transformation of societal discourse on Japan’s policy towards North Korea. Those interested in Japan’s policy towards North Korea will find Lee’sbook fascinating and refreshing.”


    Tsuneo Akaha, Director, Center for East Asian Studies, Middlebury Institute of International Studies at Monterey

    Japanese Society and the Politics of the North Korean Threat is an important and timely book that speaks to important geopolitical issues.”


    Anthony Rausch, Faculty of Education, Hirosaki University
  • Author Information

    Seung Hyok Lee is a postdoctoral fellow at the Louis Frieberg Center for East Asian Studies at The Hebrew University of Jerusalem.
  • Table of contents

    Chapter 1: Introduction
    Chapter 2: Relations after The First Missile Launch
    Chapter 3: Relations prior to Koizumi’s Visit to Pyongyang
    Chapter 4: Japan-North Korea Relations 2002–2004
    Chapter 5: Relations 2004–2006: Unilateral Sanctions Debates
    Chapter 6: Conclusion

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