On October 3rd, 2010 the EWCA Okinawa Alumni Chapter and its Chapter Leader, Choko Takayama, organized a reception, which was hosted by the 20th EWC New Generation Seminar participants, in Okinawa.
The 20th New Generation Seminar focused on “Asia Pacific Security and the U.S. Role” with visits to Okinawa, Tokyo and Seoul. Participants explored the shifting political, economic and security dynamics in the Asia Pacific region and what it means for the future of the U.S. role. With the sinking of the Cheonan in March, the resignation of Japan’s new Prime Minister largely over the Okinawa base issues, resource conflicts in the South China Sea and new tensions between China and Japan over the Senkaku Islands, the program felt very relevant to the important issues of the day.
In Okinawa, participants had an opportunity to tour U.S. bases with Marine Corps Pacific personnel, meet with Vice Governor Uehara, and hear a range of perspectives at a community panel that included Mayor Iha of Ginowan City, Professor Manabu Sato, Okinawa International University College of Law, and EWC Alumni Tomohiro Yara, Editorial Writer for the Okinawa Times (Obuchi Fellow) and Konosuke Kokube, member of the Okinawa legislative assembly (NGS 2005).
The 12 young leaders in the 20th NGS included four American elected officials, and 8 Asia Pacific leaders. Asian participants included a member of Parliament from Bangladesh, Advisor to the President of Korea, and many state and city elected officials.