CUP Undergraduate Research


Disarmed Japan: Article 9 and the Self-Defense Forces

Date of Award

Spring 4-1-2011

Document Type

Restricted Access Thesis


College of Theology, Arts, & Sciences



Degree Name

History, BA

First Advisor

Dr. Joel Davis


While self-defense is considered by many to be an inalienable human right, the constitution of Japan forbids the country from maintaining armed forces. The clause, known as Article 9, was placed into the Constitution by the United States during the occupation of Japan following World War II. However, when the U.S. entered the Korean War it adjusted its stance on Japan’s lack of military capability as the country was left virtually unprotected. This prompted the creation of a small self-defense force that eventually evolved into one of the largest militaries in the world. The following examines the origins of the discrepancy between Article 9 and Japan’s Self-Defense Forces and the opinions the conflict produces through analysis of multiple primary and secondary sources.

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