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Japan held drill in November, assuming foreign occupation of Senkakus

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The drill involving the Self-Defense Forces, Japan Coast Guard and police took place at an uninhabited island in Nagasaki Prefecture with land features resembling Uotsuri Island, one of the islets that make up the Senkakus 

If Japan thinks they own the Senkakus, then why not just do the drills on the Senkakus?

Better still, why not just actually occupy the Senkakus permanently with a military garrison? This is why Dok-do is going to be owned by South Korea forever, instead of Japan, no matter how much Japan claims the island as Takeshima. And its also why the Kurils belong to Russia.

Its much much harder to remove an occupying force than to be removed. The Okinawans must surely have realized this.

11 ( +15 / -4 )

So, the Japanese are not sure if the islands actually are Japanese then?

-12 ( +8 / -20 )

@divinda, have you even seen the islands before? Is extremely unsuited to hold drills there. Is not even suitable to live there. What is more important is the EEZ that comes along with it that allow fishing rights and other natural resources.

And do you not remember what happen 10years ago when large scale protests happen china because of our government buying those islands from the private owners? So please don't say such naive things and intentionally looking for conflicts. A lot of people suffer that time.

7 ( +16 / -9 )

@divinda, have you even seen the islands before? Is extremely unsuited to hold drills there. Is not even suitable to live there. What is more important is the EEZ that comes along with it that allow fishing rights and other natural resources.

The largest Senkaku is about 4 km sq.

For about 40 years in the early 1900s it had a fish factory with about 200 workers, and life support technology has come a long way in the past 100 years. Seriously, for the past 20 years humans have continually occupied the International Space Station orbiting in outer space.... which is a perhaps just a bit more tricky than living on a massive subtropical island full of vegetation.

Furthermore, have you ever seen Dok-do? Its a few scraps of rock with a military garrison, and the biggest is 0.19 km sq.

Or how about Okinotorishima, Japan's southernmost island. Its 9 meters sq (not km), and solidly established as Japanese territory.

And do you not remember what happen 10years ago when large scale protests happen china because of our government buying those islands from the private owners? So please don't say such naive things and intentionally looking for conflicts. A lot of people suffer that time.

Who suffered? And why should Japan's territorial claims bow to street protests in China? If Japan own them, then the only conflict would be if someone (like China) tries to occupy them, hence the military drills described in the article.

I'm not the naive one.

7 ( +12 / -5 )

Clearly Chinese soil, or rocks if you wish to be pedantic.

-19 ( +6 / -25 )

Definitely belong to China.

-19 ( +4 / -23 )

Article II of the San Francisco Peace Treaty legally demarcated Japanese territory after World War 2 and placed the islands (as part of the Nansei Shoto Islands) under the administration of the US. Under Article III, the islands were included in the areas whose administrative rights were reverted to Japan per the Agreement Between Japan and the United States of America Concerning the Ryukyu Islands and the Daito Islands (1972).

18 ( +20 / -2 )

The masked intent - dubbed no intent - simply tilting at windmills - unless there is a resource attached to the barren islet. Do the current rulers of Japan, actually envision going to war with China or rebuilding the mighty Japanese Empire or abandoning Article 9 to establish a standing military of absolutely no consequence except to waste taxpayer monies. Does Japan actually need or want to acquiesce to the demands of the USA to re-arm and become the initial line of defense for the American Empire in Asia?

-17 ( +1 / -18 )

That is a very realistic scenario. Chinese encroachment on the Senkakus is not a question of if but of when. I have long said the J government should finally put their feet down and put personnel on the islands. Trying to appease the CCP does not work.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

The drill involving the Self-Defense Forces, Japan Coast Guard and police

Military drills to retake an Island is one thing but including Police was a waste. You are not going to include police in any assault on anything defended by enemy military forces.

Agree it is time the Senkaku's were occupied and developed. If China can occupy sunken reefs by building islands on them then Japan can build, modify, construct on established features and put military ordinance and hotels for bird watchers and fishing tourists to establish a local economy on the islands. Lots of options for Japan.

Clearly China has no legal claim and they are Japanese administered and owned. As another poster pointed out, once a full time presence is established it cements ownership and makes change of ownership a matter of war.

I can not imagine China attacking Japanese islands that host international tourists. Doing so would only give reason for other nations to get involved in an area that China likes to imagine it owns completely, against international norms.

Drill are ok for training, but if you have bases on the Islands you can rest assured they wont be stolen one stormy night by Chinese engineers setting up camp and planting their flag. The advantage would be all Japans.

Let China establish a beach head and the advantage goes to China as Japan has to decide to attack or give them up. Make China have to decide to attack first, as doing so guarantees America defends Japan, and if Japan signs other mutual defense treaties then they get even more assistance.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

While from a strategic prospective I also believe Japan should put literally anytyhing on the Senkakus, let's not forget that 2 US Secretaries of State, 2 US Secretaries of Defense, and a President of the United States has declared that the defense of the Senkakus from any invasion falls under Article 5 of the US-JPN Mutual Defense Treaty. Meaning any attempt to take the Senkakus militarily will be engaging the U.S. in war.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

AndyToday 09:42 am JST

Clearly Chinese soil, or rocks if you wish to be pedantic.

John NounToday 12:29 pm JST

Definitely belong to China.

The Senkaku Islands belong to Japan. Japan should hurry to develop them and to keep a military station there.

China mainland is considerably farer away (approx. 230 miles) from Senkaku Islands than from non-disputed Japanese islands Ishigaki and Yonaguni (approx. 90 miles). Unlike Japan, China never did any business on these islands.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Wake up! China is buying up Japanese land like nobody’s business. Japan needs to get tough if it wants to protect its land and people.

I’m a gaijin, married to a Japanese lady for 30+ years, but I would rather protect Japan than my own birth country, because it is worth protecting!

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Peter14

Let China establish a beach head and the advantage goes to China as Japan has to decide to attack or give them up. Make China have to decide to attack first, as doing so guarantees America defends Japan, and if Japan signs other mutual defense treaties then they get even more assistance.

Totally agree. Giving the CCP the option to be there first, and then having a debate if Japan should "attack" the Senkakus means giving a huge advantage to the CCP. As for that US defense treaty, it is worth the paper it is printed on.

Put personnel on the Senkakus now and disregard the screaming from Beijing! Look what the CCP did to undefended Philippine reefs.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Totally agree. Giving the CCP the option to be there first, and then having a debate if Japan should "attack" the Senkakus means giving a huge advantage to the CCP. As for that US defense treaty, it is worth the paper it is printed on.

Put personnel on the Senkakus now and disregard the screaming from Beijing! Look what the CCP did to undefended Philippine reefs.

The old "Iraq invasion" logic - "we need to invade them first because they are about to do it to us" - ignoring that this made them the invaders.

Starting a war with China will start a war with China. Military interference in the Senkakus would be that spark. By either side.

Warmongers always want war. They're holding hammers, so they see every problem as a nail.

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

Strangerland

e old "Iraq invasion" logic - "we need to invade them first because they are about to do it to us" - ignoring that this made them the invaders.

LOL, what? How can Japan (or anyone) "invade" their own territory? The question is if to wait for the Chinese landing on the Senkakus or not.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

LOL, what? How can Japan (or anyone) "invade" their own territory?

The question isn't whether it's an invasion or not, it's whether it will start a war. If you don't think Japan putting the military on the Senkakus would be considered an invasion and an act of war by the Chinese, you're clearly not dealing with reality.

The question is if to wait for the Chinese landing on the Senkakus or not.

The old Iraq strategy. Warmongers will monger war.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

The question isn't whether it's an invasion or not, it's whether it will start a war.

The only thing that would start a war is Taiwan declaring independence. Japan building on Senkakus would make China very angry but it is a much different situation to Taiwan and it would not on its own start a war. Japan has a clear alliance with the US where as Taiwan it is a grey area. Also Taiwan is much closer and has much ordinance set up to hit it while the Senkaku's are further away and have nothing trained on it for the moment.

Also the US has many allies, a number of which would come to it's aid if needed. So Japan has much more certain assistance than Taiwan does.

Building on Senkaku's is also a positive for Taiwan as for a time it will take China's focus off Taiwan.

Japan needs to do the following in order.

Alter or do away with article 9. Sign mutual defense agreements with regional allies and then build on Senkaku's before China does so and limits Japans options to two. War with China to recover the islands or peace while losing territory to China.

China has much more to lose in a war as its trade with most nations will be put in jeopardy for the duration of hostilities and imports of raw resources will be almost nil.

China will risk it all to get Taiwan but will not go that far for barren islands worth a few natural resources, a better strategic position and little else.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wake up! China is buying up Japanese land like nobody’s business.

Meaningless in the scope of things as it does not change the country the land physically belongs to and does not alter who's laws are applicable on that land. In conflict all Chinese owned land in Japan become Japanese again. It just mean China gives Japan money for local use of land, for as long as Japan determines and if Japan wants the land back it passes local laws to force the land back to local control. Let China spend up big buying whatever Japan is happy to sell. Sovereignty remains Japanese at all times.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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