Episode 367 – Everything and Nothing

This week, we’re talking about one of Japan’s territorial disputes: the bitter debate over ownership of the Senaku Islands/Diaoyu Islands/Pinnacle Rocks. Where do these competing claims over a bunch of uninhabited islands in the middle of nowhere come from? And what has their impact been on Sino-Japanese relations?


United States Central Intelligence Agency. “Intelligence Report – The Senkaku Islands Dispute: Oil Under Troubled Waters?” May, 1971

Tseng, Hui-yi Katherine. “China’s Territorial Disputes with Japan.” Journal of Territorial and Maritime Studies Vol 1 No 2 (July, 2014).

Fravel, M. Taylor. “Explaining Stability in the Senkaku (Diaoyu) Islands Dispute”. Global Summitry 2 No 1 (Summer, 2016).

Coverage from The Diplomat on the exercises near the Senkakus this year.


A map of the Senkakus and their relative distances to Japan, Taiwan, and China.
Uotsuri-jima, the largest of the Senkaku islands.
The Bonito factory on Uotsuri-jima, the only attempt to actually settle the islands.
Anti-Chinese protests in Tokyo in the wake of the 2010 Senkaku incident.
Footage from the Japanese coast guard of the 2010 ramming incident showing the moment of contact.
US ships during the exercise off the Senkakus this year.

3 thoughts on “Episode 367 – Everything and Nothing”

  1. Well, now that you’ve gone down this rabbit hole, does that means some Dokdo/Takeshima coming in the future?

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