This article scrutinizes the controversy surrounding the resumption of Japanese Antarctic whaling from 1946, focusing on the negotiations and concessions that underline the nature of the Allied Occupation as an international undertaking. Britain, Norway, Australia, and New Zealand objected to Japanese pelagic whaling, chiefly on the grounds of its past record of wasteful and inefficient operations. Their opposition forced the Natural Resources Section of General Headquarters, Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers, to increase the number of Allied inspectors on board the two Japanese whaling factories from one to two, and to respond carefully to the criticisms they made of the conduct of Japanese whaling. U.S. sensitivity to international censure caused the Occupation to encourage the factory vessels to prioritize oil yields over meat and blubber for domestic consumption. Moreover, General Douglas MacArthur, the U.S. Occupation commander, summarily rejected a proposal to increase the number of Japanese fleets from two to three in 1947. With its preponderance of power, the United States successfully promoted Japanese Antarctic whaling, but a tendency to focus only on outcomes obscures the lengthy and difficult processes that enabled Japanese whaling expeditions to take place on an annual basis from late 1946.
In the decade following its founding in 1955, the men who led the foreign policy lobby the Committee of One Million Against the Admission of Communist China to the United Nations faced little concerted opposition to their attempts at preventing even the most minor alterations in the U.S. policy of both isolating and containing Communist China. But beginning with the Fulbright Hearings on China in March 1966, the trend of informed opinion moved sharply against them, as liberal Democrats became newly emboldened and moderates in both parties switched sides, inverting the bipartisan consensus against change the Committee relied upon. The 1968 election of former Vice President Richard M. Nixon, who had served alongside Committee hero John Foster Dulles, seemed to offer them newfound hope. But when the “New Nixon” proved unreceptive to the entreaties of his one-time allies, the Committee mounted a furious public relations campaign to rally belatedly the right-wing base and influence public opinion. Its failure illustrated both the limits of power of American conservatives over U.S. foreign policy while détente was ascendant, and the discontinuity in priorities between the Old Right from which the Committee emerged and the New Right that left it behind.
After seventy years, U.S. bases in Japan continue to inspire ambivalence, resentment, resistance, and even fear for many Japanese people. To improve the public image of the U.S. armed forces, base administrators create training materials designed to promote cultural awareness, prevent troops’ crimes, and discourage bad behavior. But how does the organization whose purpose is to violently oppose foreign threats to U.S. interests conceive of cultural understanding and sensitivity? Taking as a case study the materials that U.S. Marine Corps bases in Japan produce to instruct newcomers, this article argues that such materials tend to equip base personnel preemptively with strategies for erasing, coopting, and dismissing local anti-base perspectives. Specifically, these materials depict Japanese people as friendly supporters of the military, as irrational and brainwashed puppets of anti-military political forces, or simply as decorative pieces of the cultural backdrop. It concludes that the cultural education materials the U.S. Marine Corps produces at its bases in Japan not only help marines to feel that they have or deserve the support of the Japanese people in carrying out the U.S. military agenda abroad, but that they also promote a sense of cultural superiority that fosters the very behaviors that cultural training materials are meant to prevent.