2007 年 2007 巻 150 号 p. 18-34,L6
US hegemony faced post-Cold War challenges both in Asia and Europe. One challenge came from the EU. Other challenges came from Asia where the US-Japan alliance, under the impact of the ending of the Cold War, began to drift amidst the rising power of China and North Korea's nuclear development program. Added to these challenges was a new kind of threat by ‘terrorists’ to the US-centered world order.
The Clinton administration embarked on the redefinition of the US-Japan alliance in the fall of 1994. Through the signing of the Japan-US joint Declaration on Security in 1996 and the establishment of the new Guidelines on Japan-US Defense Cooperation in 1997, Washington succeeded in integrating Japan in the US strategy in Asia.
During the redefinition process, Washington policymakers effectively exploited North Korea's nuclear development program to convince many Japanese of the continued importance of the security treaty. The rising power of China was no less important for Washington and Tokyo in redefining the bilateral alliance.
In the economic field, the Clinton administration pursued a strategy of globalization, pressuring Japan to open markets for US goods and investment as well as seeking similar objectives by promoting China's admission to the WTO. Rapid liberalization of trade, investment and finance led to Asia's financial crisis in 1997. The US response during the crisis failed to live up to the responsibility of a hegemonic power as the last lender because she did not come to the rescue of those countries suffering from the crisis.
The deep disillusionment with the US prompted Asian countries to create an Asian Monetary Fund. Even though the AMF initiative did not materialize in the face of Washington's opposition, Asian countries had not given up the idea that some kind of mechanism was needed to deal with problems of financial instability. Such feelings led to the Chiang Mai Initiative in May 2000 in which Japan, China, South Korea and ASEAN countries declared their intention to establish a basket of dollars and major Asian currencies (“swap lines”) to support each others' currencies in times of economic crisis. This move was seen by many as a first step toward more financial autonomy for Asia, with significant implications for US hegemony in the IMF.
In Europe, NATO has been a key mechanism to maintain US hegemony in the face of the growing influence of the EU but its effectiveness was severely tested in the Balkans. The Dayton accords that had ended the Bosnian war (1992-95) showed that even “the limited use of force…could make a decisive difference.” (Madeleine Albright) Moreover, the emerging crisis in Kosovo that followed threatened to endanger not only the implementation of the Dayton accords but also the process of NATO enlargement that had been under way since October 1996. Therefore, Albright regarded the Kosovo crisis as “a key test of American leadership and of the relevance and effectiveness of NATO.” Faced with the Balkan crisis that challenged US leadership and unity in NATO, the Clinton administration learned that even the limited use of force was effective in maintaining US hegemony vis-à-vis the EU through NATO.
US hegemony during the Bush (Jr.) administration was also challenged by the ‘terrorist’ attacks in 9.11 and the Iraq under Saddam Hussein. President Bush attempted to tackle these challenges by linking his ‘war against terrorism’ with Hussein's alleged program to develop WMD. However, the core members of the EU opposed Bush's war against Iraq. As Bush himself confided, the crux of the matter was not just “about Saddam Hussein” but was “about the ascendancy of power in Europe.” In this sense, Bush's war against Hussein's Iraq was “an indirect war on the European Union” (Thomas Mc-Cormick).
Bush's pursuit of global hegemony ended up in destabilizing not