The Russians and the Japanese are the only two major powers who were adversaries in World War II and have yet to sign a peace treaty. The major obstacle to progress toward a peace accord is their almost 45-year old dispute over a portion of the Kurile Island chain Japan refers to as its Northern Territories . With so much at stake, it is difficult for this writer to understand why there are not greater attempts on both sides to bring this territorial dispute to resolution. Evidently., there are strong feelings on both sides. The global community is evolving and a peaceful relationship between these two countries will play an important part in how that evolution occurs. It is high time that this difficult issue receives proper attention and Russia and Japan undertake serious negotiations to resolve it.