Japan Institute for National Fundamentals

THE 3rd(2016) Kokkiken Japan Study Award

Kokkiken Japan Study Award

Purport of the inauguration of the Kokkiken Japan Study Award

Nine years ago, we estab-lished the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals with our sincere wish to rebuild the solid founda-tion of Japan and let this nation embody its true self. What we envisage is a Japan that, while retaining the values unique to it, serves as a decent member of the international community by maintaining a broader perspective on world events. First and foremost, it was our earnest desire to contribute as much as we could to the rebirth of Japan by dealing squarely with national issues including the Constitution, national security and education. Indeed, this was the prime motivation for inaugurating our institute.

To make this aspiration a reality, it is imperative to help the international community deepen its understanding of Japan and generate mutual respect between this nation and the rest of the world. Unfortunately, this goal remains far off. Japan remains misunderstood on many accounts. This is particularly true in respect to issues of history, over which Japan is often confronted by a tall wall of misunderstanding even today. Even Western countries that share the same values as Japan are no exception in this regard.

What should be specifically done to dispel such misperceptions? The best answer is to help people abroad increase their knowledge of Japan. To do this, we were considering how to foster talented people as Japan study specialists or Japanologists. Just at that time, Ms. Mari Terada made a very kind offer to JINF. It is my great honor to have been involved in establishing the Japan Study Award, which reflects the great aspiration she shares with all of us.

We sincerely hope this new award inspires researchers in the 21st-century international community to undertake thorough academic research about Japan—everything from its features, history, culture and civilization to politics, the wartime past and values unique to it. We would be delighted if the Japan Study Award helps promote free and sincere studies on Japan.

I am confident that the candid findings—positive or negative—of these researchers on various aspects of Japan—including its successes and failures—can help break down the wall of prejudice toward Japan. Research backed by academic honesty and integrity will always provide a precious source for learning.

It is my sincere hope that the Kokkiken Japan Study Award will increase the number of genuine friends of Japan around the world. At the same time, I believe Japan’s culture, civilization and its values that shape Japanese people’s thinking can contribute to the betterment of the 21st-century international community.

By Yoshiko Sakurai
President of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals

The Japan Institute for National Fundaments (JINF) is pleased and honored to announce that the Terada Mari Japan Study Award has been renamed to the Kokkiken (abbreviation for JINF) Japan Study Award in response to a kind request from Ms. Mari Terada, We at the Institute will continue to give further significance to the Japan Study Award as a token of our wholehearted gratitude to Ms. Terada and other philanthropists for their kind offers. On this occasion of the name change, the guidelines of the Japan Study Award have been partially revised to include as recipients of the award those first-generation foreigners who have acquired Japanese citizenship.

Outline of Kokkiken Japan Study Award

The Japan Institute for National Fundamentals encourages and honors outstanding works in the field of Japanese studies at home and abroad that contribute to the furthering of understanding of Japan in the areas of politics, national security, diplomacy, history, education and culture, among others.
Every year, the Institute bestows the Japan Study Award on an individual, in principle, and a prize of US$10,000. The annual Japan Study Award program also includes a Japan Study Encouragement Award, which carries a prize of US$5,000. A Japan Study Special Award may be added.
To be eligible for these awards, a research work must be published in book form or in a national or international journal in either Japanese or English in recent years by a researcher who is a foreign national including a first generation naturalized person.
Members of the Japan Study Award Recommendation Committee and relevant experts are asked to recommend a wide range of candidate works by the end of each year. Based on these recommendations, the Japan Study Award Jury selects winners of the Japan Study Award program by the spring of the following year.
An award ceremony and a reception for the winners are held in July each year.

The Third [Kokkiken Japan Study Award]

The works of Recipients of Kokkiken Japan Study Award

Japan Study Award
Yang Haiying(Ohno Akira) Professor, Shizuoka University
  • ”Nippon Rikugun to Mongoru―Koan Gunkan Gakko no Shirarezaru Tatakai”―English translation: “The Untold Story of the Hinggan Military Academy of the Man-chukuo Imperial Army―The Dissonance between the Imperial Japanese Army and Mongolia”(Chuokoron-shinsha, 2015)
  • “Chibetto ni Mau Nihonto―Mon-goru Kihei no Gendaishi”―Eng-lish translation: “A History of the Mongolian Cavalry of the PLA Armed with Japanese Swords to Quell the Tibetans”(Bungeishunju, 2014)
Japan Study Encouragement Award
Chen Rou-jin Columnist、former political reporter of United Daily News
  • “Nippon Tochi-jidai no Taiwan” ―English translation: “Taiwan under Japanese Rule 1895-1945:An Insight with Photograhs and Episodes”(PHP Institute, 2014)

Robert D. Eldridge Former Deputy Assistant Chief of Staff (G-5), Marine Corps installations Pacific/Marine Forces Japan
  • “The Origins of U.S. Policy in the East China Sea Islands Dispute Okinawa’s Reversion and the Senkaku Islands”(Routledge, 2014)

Remarks on the selection of award recipients

Yang Haiying: “Nippon Rikugun to Mongoru―Koan Gunkan Gakko no Shirarezaru Tatakai” “Chibetto ni Mau Nihonto―Mon-goru Kihei no Gendaishi”

In his award-winning work, Dr. Yang Haiying, who is a naturalized Japanese citizen, depicts China and Japan as seen in the eyes of a person of descent from southern Mongolia—Inner Mongolia—where he was born in 1964. His birthplace is part of an area that has remained profoundly affected by international politics. The 1945 Yalta Agreement reached by the Soviet Union, the United Kingdom and the United States led to the north-south division of the Mongolian population with the southern side subsequently coming under Chinese communist rule in 1949. Even today in the 21st century, Mongolian people, especially those in southern Mongolia, are right in the midst of a fierce struggle for their self-determination.

Dr. Yang points out that the very source of the Yalta accord went back to Japan that had established Manchukuo. At the same time, he decries those who condemn what Japan did before and during the Second World War on the basis of the postwar sense of values. Instead, he appreciates the way Japan ruled Manchukuo and its education there. He particularly focuses on Japan’s endeavors to form cavalry divisions comprising Mongolians, an approach that, according to him, embodied the Japanese people’s spiritual tradition of setting a high value on martial arts and showing high respect to scholarship. He thus highlights the similarity between Japanese people’s penchant for the spirit of bunburyodo (pen and sword in accord) and the Mongolian people’s sense of values as nomads. While sending out his heart to the Hinggan Military Academy of the Manchukuo Imperial Army and its cavalry troops, he empirically sheds light on their sorrowful history of coming under the command of the Chinese Communist Party and being mobilized to crack down on Tibetans.

The award-winning book proves his outstanding abilities to conduct comprehensive and intensive field studies and gather enormous amounts of primary-source materials. Indeed, those who appear in his book are featured in a way true to history. His book also tells us of the structure of the Chinese Communist Party rule that is closely relevant to what we are witnessing today.

Dr. Yang has spent many years studying what happened during the Cultural Revolution as the main theme of his research—which is related to the award-winning book. He has already published an eight-volume, 9,000-page series of books under the title of “Mongorujin Jenosaido ni kansuru Kisoshiryo” (Basic Materials on the Mongolian Genocide). Through his sturdy research, he maintains that the Mongolian genocide that took place during the Cultural Revolution remains an unsolved crime against humanity and that China is obliged to face it. It is too superficial to regard his research as a mere criticism of China. Why is China now trying to undermine the whole of the international community’s order and sense of values? The international community needs to understand China’s national characteristics to cope adequately with the country. In that context, Dr. Yang’s research does give us an exceptionally important clue to the reason for the Chinese behaviors of late.

The comparison of the national characteristics and qualities of the Japanese and Chinese people as presented in his award-winning book reminds us Japanese anew of the cultural distance between Japan and China. Dr. Yang’s work—which is a superb comparative study of the civilizations of Japan and China—seems to be also meant to be an earnest request for Japan to know the real national characteristics of the Chinese to cope better with China. Those countries and territories, including Mongolia, that used to be under Japanese rule have not yet been relieved of the sufferings from the Greater East Asian War at all. Japan will not be allowed to leave the current situations in the Asian countries it once ruled as they are. Japan remains obliged to actively engage in helping those countries and territories restore what they lost because of Japanese rule. In his book, I think, Dr. Yang urges the Japanese to be aware that Mongolia, in particular, has high expectations for Japan to do so.

By Tadae Takubo
President of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals
Japan Study Award Jury

Chen Rou-jin: “Nippon Tochi-jidai no Taiwan” ―English translation: “Taiwan under Japanese Rule 1895-1945:An Insight with Photograhs and Episodes”

About 40 years ago, I visited Taiwan for the first time. As I strolled around Taipei, I became really impressed by the presence of those stores, roadside trees, dim streetlights and people’s communicative gestures, among others, that no doubt dated back to prewar Japan. They were what I saw and experienced in Japan in my primary school days. In other words, it was Japan that had changed so much in the postwar years. Ever since my first visit there, acquaintances and friends of mine in and from Taiwan have told me a lot about outstanding Japanese who greatly contributed to the development of Taiwan—including, among others, Governor of Taiwan Shimpei Gotoh, author and politician Inazo Nitobe and hydraulic engineer Yoichi Hatta. In fact there are quite a few of Taiwanese authors who have published biographies of Gotoh and other Japanese known for their contributions to Taiwan.

Chen Rou-jin’s book, whose Japanese title is “Nippon Tochi-jidai no Taiwan” (Taiwan under Japanese Rule), sheds light on the presence of Japanese people in prewar Taiwan from a completely different angle. Born in the postwar era, Ms. Chen features ordinary Japanese who lived in prewar Taiwan from a standpoint: “How did the generation of my grandparents live when Taiwan was under Japanese rule and feel toward Japanese people?” As such, her book tells us something different from what I have learned from my acquaintances and friends in and from Taiwan as in the case of Shimpei Gotoh. As a columnist, she depicts what she covers in a highly flexible manner.

More than 10 years ago, I travelled along the eastern coastline of Taiwan by train, following Japanese author Ryotaro Shiba’s steps. After leaving Taipei, I went through Banqiao (板橋) or “Itahashi” in Japanese, as mentioned in Ms. Chen’s book. At around lunchtime, I arrived at a station, whose name I now forget, and bought an “ekiben” boxed lunch, which is also mentioned in her book. Ms. Chen refers to Mr. Chang Chao-ying, a Japan hand to whom I am obliged. He used to serve as the spokesman for the Taipei Economic and Cultural Representative Office in Japan that functions as a de facto embassy in Tokyo of Taiwan. In the final chapter of the book, Ms. Chen touches on the presence in Japan of Japanese prostitutes serving troops of the Allied Powers that occupied Japan after the end of the Second World War. This is an issue we Japanese would rather not be told of, but Ms. Chen does not show any self-restraint, a matter that is unnecessary for a new-generation columnist to care about. Perhaps, such a stance is part of her charm.

By Tadae Takubo
Vice President of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals
Japan Study Award Jury

Robert D. Eldridge: “The Origins of U.S. Policy in the East China Sea Islands Dispute Okinawa’s Reversion and the Senkaku Islands”

The government of Japan incorporated the Senkaku Islands into Okinawa Prefecture in 1895 or the 28th year of the Meiji era. Following Japan’s defeat in the Second World War, the area was put under administration of the U.S. military, but in around 1970 when it became known that the continental shelf around the Senkakus was potentially rich in natural resources, such as oil, Taiwan and mainland China began claiming sovereignty over the islands. This is the situation that has been in existence ever since.

This book is an academic work, focusing on the history of the issue of the Senkakus and the stances the U.S. government has taken on the issue over the past decades—from the time when the United States ruled the Senkakus and other parts of Okinawa to the years that followed the prefecture’s reversion to Japan. The author keeps elaborately depicting one fact and another after digging deeply and extensively into archives of both published materials and archives of U.S. diplomatic documents to the extent that there seemed to be no more facts left for him—and for us—to know about the issue. The accuracy of the cited facts is guaranteed by the inclusion in the book of more than 70 pages of footnotes to clarity details.

During its rule of the Ryukyu Islands, the United States affirmed that Japan had residual sovereignty over the territory and thought that the Senkakus belonged to the Ryukyus. Nonetheless, when Okinawa was returned to Japan, Washington, while also returning the Senkakus to Japan, as part of the exercise of its administrative rights over the East China Sea islands, chose to take a “policy of neutrality” as to the question of which country had the territorial rights over the Senkakus, Japan, Taiwan or China. The United States held that the matter should be settled among the three governments. The author concludes that the current state of confusion over the Senkakus has stemmed from Washington’s failure to declare its support for Japan’s sovereignty over the islands in 1972 when it returned Okinawa to Japanese rule.

The book was originally written in English and translated into Japanese. It is particularly praiseworthy that a book focusing exclusively on the issue of the Senkakus has been published in English. Indeed, it is highly helpful for our country.

By Katsuhiko Takaike
Vice President of the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals
Japan Study Award Jury

Award Jury

ChairYoshiko Sakurai President, Japan Institute for National Fundamentals (JINF)
Vice ChairTadae TakuboJINF Vice President and Professor Emeritus, Kyorin University
Takashi ItoProfessor Emeritus, University of Tokyo
Sukehiro HirakawaProfessor Emeritus, University of Tokyo
Toshio WatanabeExecutive advisor for academic affairs, Takushoku University
Katsuhiko TakaikeJINF Vice President and lawyer

Award Recommendation Committee

George Akita Professor Emeritus, University of Hawaii
James E. AuerProfessor Emeritus, Vanderbilt University
Brahma ChellaneyProfessor of Strategic Studies, Center for Policy Research, India
Kevin DoakProfessor at Georgetown University
Vassili MolodiakovRussian professor at the Institute of Japanese Identity, Takushoku University
Brandon PalmerAssociate professor of history at Carolina Coastal University
Koh Se-kaiProfessor Emeritus, Tsuda College
Henry Scott StokesFormer Tokyo Bureau Chief, New York Times
Arthur WaldronProfessor, University of Pennsylvania
Edward MarxAssociate Professor, Ehime University
David HanlonProfessor, University of Hawaii at Mānoa