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Japanese warship to escort U.S. supply vessel in Pacific: reports

26 Comments
By Kazuhiro Nogi

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This is a small step but a significant one in that Japanese Navy is ordered to defend a foreign (US) supply ship in real life. Japan has finally become a "normal" nation, though in a small scale, by moving away from a traditional, narrower interpretation of the nation's pacifist constitution. Japan has long enjoyed "peace" without needing to shoot even a single bullet in international conflicts after the WW II. But no more.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Does the US really need a Japan warship to escort? This only entices enemies of Japan and puts the country into the spotlight.  Japan has not business in allowing it to be drawn into conflict as a means to change the Constitution which only serves Abe's and the old guard private interests and not the people.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

Does the US really need a Japan warship to escort? 

Well transporting an unarmed freight vessel so xlose to an enemy nation, they do need some kind of protection. This is merely a favor to Japan to make them feel powerful (cool), as the US could us their own ships for the job.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

protect a U.S. supply ship

LOL, from what? Raging seagulls?!

This folks is what we refer to as blind obedience. Obey and follow your master!!

-3 ( +7 / -10 )

LOL, from what? Raging seagulls?!

Anytime a military ship is in foreign waters unarmed it needs protection, any country any sea. Its normal procedure.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

What is going on? Is there a treat?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Wouldn't it be an unforeseeable tragedy if the Japanese vessel were to sail within range of NK missiles, and, claiming provocation, Kim attacked it?

Why, then Japan would clearly be the victim of an attack and the US would have no choice but to set off all the big bangy things that get Trump's approval ratings an profits for arms contractors up.

Wouldn't that be a terrible surprise? Still I'm sure we can rely on the cool knowledgeable head and incomparable moral compass of the Golfer-in-Chief.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Japanese warship withing the range of NK will just only upset NK leader and is an unnecessary action (provocation?) in my opinion, US can certainly protect their own supply ship, can't they ? Almost like if a conflict was wanted.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Above posters bring up good topics, but it's obvious that Japan has changed its laws and is looking to be more active with the US and allies in patrolling the Worlds Sea here.

Its gunna be a long game of push and pull, but I think that saying it's dangerous and looking for conflict isnt really accurate.

Japan and the US have long participated together in patrols but this is a symbolic upgrade in the power projected.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

The way the article is written also has something to do with it.

This ship, looking like an aircraft carrier, is a helicopter carrier, but it is actually classed as a submarine destroyer. I bet that it will be available for Osprey liaison too.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Same size as the Kaga.

More photos here.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Izumo-class_helicopter_destroyer#/media/File:DDH-183%E3%81%84%E3%81%9A%E3%82%82%E5%9E%8B%E8%AD%B7%E8%A1%9B%E8%89%A6.jpg

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Derek GrebeToday  08:55 am JST

"Wouldn't it be an unforeseeable tragedy if the Japanese vessel were to sail within range of NK missiles, and, claiming provocation, Kim attacked it?"

I read in JT this morning that the supply ship will be escorted from the Boso Peninsula (near the naval base at Yokosuka) to some point off Shikoku. While this course is "within range of NK missiles" it is also off the SOUTH coast of Japan while NK is WEST and NORTHWEST of Japan.

No time for such alarm yet.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Japan has long enjoyed "peace" without needing to shoot even a single bullet in international conflicts after the WW II. But no more.

Yeah, now it can join the US in causing wars all over the world. Wonderful!

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Practice makes perfect. The Japanese Navy is still training for the possibility of any future military conflict. Just as the U.S. Navy is still training for the possibility of any future military conflict.

It will be the first deployment -- outside of troop exercises -- to protect the U.S. fleet after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe expanded the country's military capabilities in 2015, though they remain restricted under Japan's pacifist constitution.

The U.S. supply ship is expected to support America's naval fleet in the Pacific, possibly including the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson,

0 ( +2 / -2 )

In reality America is looking After Japan's interests and South Korea as it's obliged to under the war treaty with Japan.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Why would you send a helicopter carrier & not the likes of an Aegis cruiser as an escort. Japan simply wants to show "we have a big ship"...it would be largely useless if the transport ship was actually threatened.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

The threat that NK can realistically pose to the supply ship is from submarines - exactly what a Japanese heli-carrier is designed to counter.

This is a small but welcome step toward a more bilateral security arrangement.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

The vessel was already scheduled for a three month sea period and will be heading to the Philippines for a port call.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

i doubt a military supply ship would sail unarmed in the direction of a major escalating war zone. Abe should stay out of it and protect our coastline and our people.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Does the US really need a Japan warship to escort? This only entices enemies of Japan and puts the country into the spotlight.

When Japan and the U.S. do it, it's called a 'drill'. But when North Korea does it, it's 'provocation'. Tired of the double-speak these days. And even more tired of those who continue to fall for all the fear mongering. People have about a three day memory - if they are taking note at all. Yet they always have a strong opinion of religions and nations that they have never lived in nor experienced.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

DPRK calls the US's drills 'provocations', but their own ICBM launches 'drills', and threats of a nuclear strike on the US mainland 'self-protection'.  It works both ways. How do you overcome the eternal tendency of nations to label people as US and THEM?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I was talking to some people about this situation recently and one guy said, and I think a LOT of people share this sentiment, "Well, if the ship gets fired at Japan can finally change the Constitution and fight."

I honestly believe Abe and others are sticking their -- well, okay, OTHERS' -- necks out as much as possible so that if they are beheaded they can use it as an excuse to finally change the Constitution and roll Japan's clocks back. Why would they celebrate the first time such a ship has sailed since WWII, when what happened at the end of WWII happened as a result of Japan's actions? Have they not learned?

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

DPRK calls the US's drills 'provocations', but their own ICBM launches 'drills', and threats of a nuclear strike on the US mainland 'self-protection'.

Fair point but it is the U.S. and Japan with an armada just miles from NK, ready to obliterate. Pressure much? Their missile tests have been going on for decades, nothing new. As have U.S. missile tests, and nuke tests all over the Earth.

How do you overcome the eternal tendency of nations to label people as US and THEM?

You grow up and realize that we are all on this rock together.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

What's the fuss about? NHK reported that Izumo will escort the USN ship from Yokosuka to the waters off Shikoku. What dangers are expecting both ships there? Enemy subs, bombers, mines, missiles? Nothing like that. It's just a routine cruise of ships from two countries, only under a new name especially crafted for the North Korean occasion. So everybody calm down and carry on with the Golden Week.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Have they not learned?

No Smith. No they have not!!

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

This supply ship is part of the US Merchant Marine fleet.

Not crewed by US sailors but a bunch of civilian mariners.

Normally, these ships are anchored outside the reef off Saipan.

They carry enough supplies and ammunition for 6000 military personnel for 3 months.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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