Journal Article - Quarterly Journal: International Security

Active Denial: Redesigning Japan’s Response to China’s Military Challenge

  • Eric Heginbotham
  • Richard J. Samuels
| Spring 2018


How should Japan respond to China’s growing military threat? Japan currently employs a forward defense strategy, aiming to quickly and decisively defeat a Chinese attack. This strategy is unlikely to succeed, because China’s military capabilities surpass Japan’s. Japan should instead adopt an active denial strategy, maintaining a survivable military force after an attack until the United States comes to its aid.

For more information on this publication: Belfer Communications Office
For Academic Citation:

Eric Heginbotham and Richard J. Samuels, "Active Denial: Redesigning Japan’s Response to China’s Military Challenge," International Security, Vol. 42, No. 4 (Spring 2018), pp. 128–169, doi:10.1162/ISEC_a_00313.

The Authors