Monthly archive April, 2010
C-130J refueling tanker delivered to Japan

C-130J refueling tanker delivered to Japan

Kawasaki and Boeing have delivered an ASDF C-130H Hercules transport after reworking into a tanker. The new tanker is to be used to refuel UH-60J search and rescue helicopters.

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The PLAN and Okinawa, again

Coatepeque at China Defense Blog has some pictures and articles on the PLAN task force that sailed past Okinawa a few weeks ago. Apparently they were headed to Straits of Malacca for an exercise. He’s also got hull numbers and other details. China Defense Blog is a great blog that I’ve linked to over at...

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More destroyer action off Okinawa

A week ago it was the People’s Liberation Army Navy. This time it’s the U.S. Navy and the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force, in a passing exercise off the coast of Okinawa. Apparently both navies were holding the bilateral exercise Multi-Sail which concluded April 16th. The Chinese were in the neighborhood, as far as I can tell,...

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ASDF crash video

Here’s a little video I had saved. A Japanese F-15 crash landed at Komatsu–the pilot had forgotten to lower the landing gear. That must have been quite a surprise. Apparently the tower was supposed to remind him to check his landing gear, but they forgot to do that. I could probably find out more than...

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DPJ wants to ease regulations on arms exports

This is mildly surprising. A vice minister of defense says the government wants to make it easier for defense contractors to join in international development of advanced weapons systems. Presumably this means the F-X fighter. Japan’s indigenous F-2 fighter bomber is coming to the end of its production run and the worry is that without...

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Ministry of Defense creates China-tracking intelligence unit

The National Institute for Defense Studies is standing up a research cell, the mission of which will be to study the Chinese military. It will study the strategic thinking guiding the People’s Liberation Army, the purpose of its recent military buildup and its relationship with the Chinese Communist Party, the daily said. I don’t know...

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ASDF scrambled nearly once a day in 2009

The ASDF scrambled to intercept foreign aircraft 299 times in 2009.  Mostly Russians, but also Chinese, Taiwanese, South Korean, American, and Indian. Interestingly, the ASDF’s interceptors scrambled against North Korean planes for the first time in ten years.

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Japan and peacekeeping, a policy emerges?

The Japan Times has an interesting article on Japan and peacekeeping missions, particularly as to how the Democratic Party of Japan and and the Social Democratic Party view them. Consider this a bellwether for the future. Part of the problem with Japanese peacekeeping missions is that the rules of participation are so strict that participation...

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Northrop Grumman comes calling

The Japan Times has an article about Northrop Grumman exhibiting a 1:1 model of the Global Hawk UAV in Tokyo, the final leg of an Asia tour designed to drum up sales of the long-legged unmanned aerial vehicle. A good fit? Before last weekend I would have said “maybe”. Last weekend, however, the Chinese Navy showed...

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GSDF unit to disarm anti-tank rocket

This is a rather unusual story from Okinawa. Housewife’s husband brings home anti-tank rocket in the 1960s. He dies, she throws it out into the backyard. Neighbor gets worried, calls it in to the authorities. The authorities send a GSDF ordinance team…but the team doesn’t know how to deal with anything made after World War...

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Okinawa-based GSDF unit expanded, renamed

According to this report in Xinhua, the 1st Combined Brigade of the Ground Self Defense Forces is now the 15th brigade. The Naha, Okinawa-based unit also received a manpower boost of 300 men, a dedicated Nuclear/Biological/Chemical unit, and new armored vehicles and artillery. Vehicles are possibly the Type 82 NBC reconnaissance vehicle, pictured above. This...

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Thoughts on Futenma, Part Five (A Modest Proposal)

Thoughts on Futenma, Part Five (A Modest Proposal)

So, let’s think about fixing this. If the DPJ is truly only interested in making the U.S.-Japan partnership more an alliance of equal powers instead of one dominant and one lesser power, the DPJ needs to find ways to do more for the alliance. Making a big deal out of Futenma is doing something for...

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