Jesse Johnson, The Japan Times

Jesse Johnson

The Japan Times

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Past articles by Jesse:

South Korea announces plan to resolve wartime labor dispute with Japan

Ties hit fresh lows after 2018 rulings by the South Korean Supreme Court ordered two Japanese firms to pay damages over forced labor under Japan's occupation of the Korean Peninsula. → Read More

In push to mend ties, South Korea’s Yoon says Japan has gone from 'aggressor to partner’

The South Korean leader’s drive to improve relations with Japan faces a momentous challenge, as ties between the two neighbors remain chilly over historical issues such as wartime labor. → Read More

North Korea fires off more missiles, warning it could turn Pacific into 'firing range'

Pyongyang sent two ballistic missiles into the Sea of Japan on Monday, with the powerful sister of leader Kim Jong Un threatening to unleash even more launches. → Read More

North Korea says surprise ICBM drill is 'proof' of 'nuclear counterattack' capabilities

Pyongyang emphasized Saturday's launch of a Hwasong-15 missile had been 'suddenly organized without previous notice' in the first such drill involving a long-range weapon. → Read More

Japan eyes eased rules for firing on aircraft violating airspace

The Defense Ministry earlier announced that it “strongly suspects” objects that flew over Japan in 2019, 2020 and 2021 were Chinese spy balloons. → Read More

North Korea unveils apparent new ICBM in nighttime military parade

The new missiles would not need to be fueled up, making them easier to deploy quickly and more difficult to spot and shoot down. → Read More

U.S. Ambassador Rahm Emanuel says Japanese industry can play bigger role amid defense challenges

Rahm Emanuel said building up "resilience" across a number of sectors and supply chains and bolstering deterrence capabilities were crucial goals for the alliance. → Read More

What could Japan do about foreign spy balloons over its territory?

The nation may have already seen Chinese spy balloons over its skies, including two instances of remarkably similar design to the alleged spy balloon shot down by the U.S. → Read More

After U.S. downing of suspected spy balloon, can Sino-American ties can be stabilized?

Washington's dramatic decision to shoot down the balloon has highlighted the growing trust gap between the two superpowers and raised fresh questions about the trajectory of bilateral ties. → Read More

Can South Korea and Japan repair their strained relationship?

Both nations are aiming to mend ties clouded by years of mistrust and a tumultuous past, but many challenges remain. → Read More

Former U.S. Indo-Pacific commander underscores threat to Taiwan’s outlying islands

Retired Adm. Philip Davidson — known for his assessment that China may try to attack Taiwan by 2027 — called the threat to the islands a “grave security concern” for Taipei. → Read More

Kishida and Biden meeting heralds an alliance in lock-step — but challenges remain

While no concrete deliverables emerged, the two leaders formally set the future course of the U.S.-Japan alliance. → Read More

U.S. to boost military capabilities in Japan and step up cooperation amid China worries

Tokyo and Washington agreed to deploy a more agile and capable U.S. Marine unit to Okinawa, ramp up joint surveillance operations and expand the shared use of military facilities. → Read More

U.K.-Japan defense cooperation to intensify following landmark agreement

The deal is Tokyo’s first such pact with a European nation and the country’s third overall as it expands its number of global security partners. → Read More

What to expect from North Korea in 2023

After a record-breaking year of missile launches, the new year could prove even more explosive as Kim Jong Un looks to build more advanced missiles and nuclear bombs. → Read More

North Korea to finish preparations for spy satellite by April

Pyongyang claimed to have conducted “an important final-stage test” for the development of the satellite, one of leader Kim Jong Un's key goals for bolstering his arsenal. → Read More

North Korea fires two medium-range missiles into Sea of Japan

The launches came just days after Japan committed to acquiring a "counterstrike capability" that would allow it to strike enemy bases and command sites — including inside North Korea. → Read More

With revisions to key security documents, pacifist Japan set to blaze a new trail

Upcoming changes could usher in dramatic shifts in the country’s defense-oriented policy amid what Tokyo calls an "increasingly severe security environment." → Read More

Kishida seeks to hike defense spending by more than 50% over five years

The new budget would put Japan closer to the target Kishida ordered last week of spending 2% of gross domestic product on defense by 2027. → Read More

In major shift, Kishida sets defense spending target at 2% of GDP for first time

Japan has long maintained an informal cap on defense spending of around 1% of GDP, but calls for an increase have grown amid escalating threats from China and North Korea. → Read More