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Japan's military seeks big boost in defense budget

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By ERIC TALMADGE

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"Though defense outlay increases generally face criticism from Japan’s neighbors, who harbor bitter memories of Japan’s militarist adventurism during World War II"

Only from China. And from South Korea who are bi-polar as they are US allies just like Japan, and are in denial of he act that they were part of Japan in WWII. The rest of Asia and the world has no problem and many countries in fact welcome it in he face of the China threat. Sorry but this is the truth today. ,

5 ( +18 / -13 )

Better pull out the popcorn, because this is about to become one interesting show. Let's see how this goes. I have to ask though:

Can Japan afford it? There's so many issues that need to be addressed right now, like Fukushima. How will Japan afford to fix their nuclear issue and afford to bolster a defense force when the government is Y20 trillion in the hole?

3 ( +8 / -5 )

We have one of the biggest navy in the world. We only need ICBM

5 ( +9 / -4 )

There is no threat from China.

-22 ( +6 / -28 )

This is the same story that has been played out since the dawn of time.

As soon as governments start running out of money, or come up against problems they can't solve, they try and con everybody to find some external enemy to blame their woes on.

Never worked, before, ain't gonna work now.

Just a lot of deaths and economic destruction.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

Japan scared themselves. did china or my country ever invade japan before? you, Japan did invade my home country and china before and you got history and i dont know why you say that china is a threat? mind your own self Abe!

-13 ( +7 / -20 )

huh, but there is no money? and if there is, SURELY it should be spend in Tohoku / Fukushima first?

4 ( +7 / -3 )

you, Japan did invade my home country and china before and you got history and i dont know why you say that china is a threat? mind your own self Abe!

It seems like Japan learned something from the history lessons.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

huh, but there is no money? and if there is, SURELY it should be spend in Tohoku / Fukushima first?

But there is the cunning plan, Papagiulio.

Do nothing about Tohoku/Fukushima and the radiation levels will climb so high that NO ONE, not even NK would dare to invade for risk of contamination.

-10 ( +4 / -14 )

Add the VTOL variant of the F-35 and the helicopter destroyer becomes a light aircraft carrier and a potent force projection weapon.

And anybody who really thinks that China is not a potential threat is clearly not living in the same world as the rest of us.

1 ( +8 / -7 )

The Izumo can't handle the F-35B in its current state. It would have to be significantly revamped to be able to accommodate it. Not to mention Japan does not possess, nor have the ordered, the F-38B.

China is a threat and Japan is certainly making moves to hedge against it. But all this speculation about the Izumo being transformed into a light carrier overnight is nonsense.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

I am waiting for the millitairy to update their camouflage patterns with Itaisha stickers!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The money would be better spent on health care, elderly and children which are the future of Japan, not on carriers or F35.

Take care of the Fukushima leak first, you are poisoning the Pacific ocean which are going to affect millions of people, including the sea food which everyone consume.

As you warmongers would like to spin a tall tale that China is a threat, you guys are full of hogwash.

If there are going to be a war between China and Japan/USA, we all will have a nuclear winter, it will not be a conventional warfare, it will be a nuke war and at the end nothing matter anymore.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

If there are going to be a war between China and Japan/USA, we all will have a nuclear winter, it will not be a conventional warfare, it will be a nuke war and at the end nothing matter anymore.

Whether you agree China is a threat is irrevelant. Japan views it as such. Thus they are taking measures to protect themselves if need be. China is doing the same because their historical sense of victimhood makes them paranoid. They are building their capabilities as well. In fact, China made the first moves in that regard.

I am of the opinion that any conflict between the US and China is unlikely BEAUSE both possess nuclear weapons. Mutual assured destruction is enough to keep tensions from boiling over.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

@ squeeks

"Can Japan afford it"

I also wonder. May be just print more money.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

instead of spending all that friggin money on defense I feel that they should spend it on cleaning up Fukushima.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

And give the fresh debt to the hawks that are selling the weapons. They can smell the freshly printed money. Can Japan afford it hahaha joking right. Japan is number 1 ask any of them...

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Whether you agree China is a threat is irrevelant. Japan views it as such. Thus they are taking measures to protect themselves if need be. China is doing the same because their historical sense of victimhood makes them paranoid. They are building their capabilities as well. In fact, China made the first moves in that regard.

I am of the opinion that any conflict between the US and China is unlikely BEAUSE both possess nuclear weapons. Mutual assured destruction is enough to keep tensions from boiling over.<

As the saying goes once bitten twice shy. Do you expect China to stay the same with outdatedWW2 arms, lesson been learnt, been there and have been humiliated in their own country.

China is doing it for self defense unlike some who use the pretext of self defense as a mean of aggression.

It is the politicians who are the warmongers, "If politicians can be trusted, pig poo can be had for breakfast"

WHAT DOES POLITICIAN AND BABY HAVE IN COMMON?

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

Military defense should not be about guns and military build up but rather defense of the country in the cyber world called the matrix. The future of war is a video game anyway.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Japan scared themselves. did china or my country ever invade japan before? you, Japan did invade my home country and china before and you got history and i dont know why you say that china is a threat? mind your own self Abe!

Most schools rejected the history books filled with historical revisionism. Most people are ashamed of World War II and hell, they're the last ones on Earth interested in a Nuclear War. It's not like China is War-Crime free, you know?

Should we go on and talk about Tibet?

4 ( +6 / -2 )

If the threaten will from China nothing can prevent . There are too big weakness in Japan and USA.

If the war break out with USA, Russia and other anti-USA countries will surely join in. It will surely be a great war.

2.Japan has too many nuclear plants, these are like nuclear bombs to be lighted, so Japan is too easy to be eliminated.

and the for the USA, the Yellow Stone Park is the Biggest Volcano that has been in the break out period a long time ago, provide enough pounchs this volcano will destroyed the USA. China can do this, Russia can do this, even N.korea can do this by chance.
-5 ( +3 / -8 )

Wow - some adults actually understand that the US military bases are a prime target! There's a straightforward solution to that.....

No more spending on military hardware!! - Japan is on the brink of a financial crisis and any additional unbalance of the budget could tip off a mess that will make the last 20 years seem like paradise:

http://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesgruber/2013/08/10/a-japanese-crisis-nears/

0 ( +3 / -3 )

the direction to military build up is not really clear to be a good strategy, leaders never tried to talk to each other, Japan should think carefully on this (rather than just jumping to a conclusion that this is a good way in solving regional problems), keeping in mind that Japan does have it own domestic problems as well

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The China threat has been over used and quite a non sense, the Chinese are not like Americans, they are not advocates of war and violence. The Chinese are too content with themselves. Stop using China as an excuse to build military and pose threat to rest of Asia, although thats the story the Americans have been using.....

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

@Tiger_in_The_Hermitage,

You did get it. They need set up an enemy, even use alien , but use China is more real.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

How can Japan afford this? They're over a QUADRILLION yen in the RED!!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

But all this speculation about the Izumo being transformed into a light carrier overnight is nonsense.

As a "proper" carrier - yes. As an improvised platform, not impossible. How practical it would be depends on a lot of things though. Can aircraft it was not designed for (or was it?) be stored below deck? Refuelled? Ordinance replenished?

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The time of the toilet paper yen is upon us....

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

1) Can the F-35B make a vertical takeoff with a full combat load? Negative.

2). Recent test flights have shown the F-35 to be virtually useless in air to air combat.

3). Japan does not have it

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Down with evil China and North Korea, fighto Japan!

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

Japan is already 5th military spending country and under protection umbrella of 1st one, how much more budget could be ever enough? so I agree with posters' opinion that the money should be properly used. Again I think Japan should try best to well get along with Chinese for long run. Chinese take huge part of the world and will last as long as whole human being, therefore no matter you like it or not you can't fix it so you got to stand it!

-3 ( +3 / -6 )

@Hoola_Hoop_A_Cheerio

Point(s) taken about the F-35. How effective will it be in air to air? I sure don't know but I guess you can't have everything with multi-role, right? Getting back to the Izumo, even with great aircraft ("great" for whatever role they perform), I think we can agree the Izumo herself wouldn't perform anything like a "real" carrier, assuming she could be fitted out to act as one.

@ the people who claim that China is not a threat, it strange to see how some of you go on to state how badly things will go for Japan and the US if war broke out.

As for me, when Chinese government officials and PLA generals go on public record about Japan, and other countries, returning "Chinese" territory, I think that's fair ground for concern and act accordingly.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

I think it's less about geopolitics and more about greed and corruption in government contracts. People here in Japan have watched with envy the war profiteering of connected, revolving-door companies like Halliburton, where the contractors and suppliers and their politically connected cronies raking in mountains of cash with little accountability or oversight, then bending and shaping legislation and policy by big-money lobbying and campaign contributions.

And none of that is new. This is an old, old story.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Well, China and Korea once tried to take Japan but it was in the Genghis Khan's age. The only solution for the problem is to do agreements to reduce military expense budgets. Why allocate 1 to 3% of GDP if you can use it in health insurance and research?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

If the same money that had been spent for the "War on Terror" and allied activities over the last ten or so years had been used for peaceful purposes, we would be living in a Golden Age by now.

The problem of famine could have been solved.

The cures for many diseases could have been found.

New, renewable energy sources discovered and developed.

And, as a result, American influence on the world would be HUGE.

As it is, I'm sorry to say this, but Americans are despised - even in democratic parts of the world.

Japan doesn't need to spend any more money on "defence."

For one thing, no one is likely to attack. So there is no one to "defend" the country from.

And for another, it's a tremendous WASTE of resources.

We only have one planet to live on.

Don't you think we should work out ways to get along with one another?

-3 ( +6 / -9 )

Another shift of our income to huge corporations in bed with Abe and his lot.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

A tiny 3% increase from the previous year is called a "big boost" in defense budget. Adjective is really liberal in the press these days.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

A 3% change in a budget is pretty big, especially when your budget is already pushing 5 trillion yen

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I think that Asia have to scrap the military expenses and built what is the most important: Carbon Dioxide remover plants. Huge buildings to cleanup the global air. With 3 percent of GDP of all the countries, there will be possible to avoid short or long term irreversible climate warming changes.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Sadly, while I can empathize with Bertie's position, the JSDF does need this boost to it's funding. China has been growing more bellicose, along with North Korea and needs to be able to defend itself better.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Saul Schimek,

Thank you for the empathy.

I'm sorry, but China is not the bellicose one.

The U.S.A. however, is a good candidate.

They don't necessarily do it directly - everything seems to be covert and hidden these days.

But through their satellites and puppet governments, they are the ones that are causing trouble.

The U.S.A. just needs to cool it and start learning to live with other countries in the world.

-4 ( +6 / -10 )

Don't you think we should work out ways to get along with one another?

I wish we could do this and maybe in some more enlightened future we can but unfortunately that is not the world we live in. Hence the reason a military is necessary. Sadly I fear we all will be long gone before any dream like that is realized for as long as somebody has something someone wants, someone is different than someone else, someone believes something someone else doesn't war will continue.

Its easy to look back and say money could have been spent better feeding the hungry and clothing the naked, or curing cancer but that's the funny thing about looking back you can always say it could have been better. American money I assume since every instance you mentioned was mainly paid for with our money. Which is funny coming from you because in another breath you would say that America shouldn't get involved in other countries, but I guess its o k when it supports your opinion. That being said America does provide more foreign aid for causes you listed above then any other country on this one earth even though it only has 4.5% of the population and some individual American people donate more money to causes you stated that entire nations do, so I would have to ask then how much has your nation pitched in or even you yourself?

American's are despised you say? I find that an incredibly funny statement since the only reason Japan, South Korea, Germany, Austria, etc. etc. etc. have a free democratic environment today is because of America, this statement is not meant to be arrogant but is just a simple fact. You need only to shift you keen hind sight back a few years to see that.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

I have read some rather absurd comments like China is not a threat, Japan is completely out of money, the US is behind this, and war will come from China, Russia, and the end is near! Boys and girls, you can see the bias all over these comments! Japan is a sovereign nation, it is constantly being provoked by China, and North Korea, comments like refitting the new Warship to accommodate fixed wing aircraft is not the issue. Japan must continue to be state of the art as far as defense, and perhaps offense to keep China (who is no threat), North Korea (who is not escalating its ICBM/Nuclear program). You may not like it, you may not agree, however Japan is at last growing a pair, and standing up for itself. The continual back biting that goes on about the Japanese not in the minds of there neighbors apologizing to the standards they wish is just too old, and history has closed the books on that one! When China, both Koreas and all the other nations who can put a row boat into the fray stand down, then perhaps we can revisit Japan’s military posture. Until then..Keep Japan safe!

4 ( +6 / -2 )

Mitch CohenSep. 04, 2013 - 09:40AM JST Ossan - Korea were forcefully annexed to Japan, something even the Japanese government admitted. You would >have everyone believe Korea was willingly and voluntarily absorbed into Japan, which is far from the truth. Koreans >were not treated as equals.

Really? You don't think Koreans, who were given Japanese citizenship (something unheard of in the British colonies) were not treated as equals? You believe all Koreans in the Imperial Japanese Army were low rank soldiers?

-Lee Byung-Mu (李秉武) Lieutenant General of IJA in 1920 -Cho Dong-yoon (趙東潤) Lt.Gen. in 1920 -Lee Hee-doo (李煕斗) Major General in 1920 -Cho Sung-Geun (趙性根) Lt.Gen. in 1928 -Eo Dam (魚潭) Lt.Gen. in 1930 -Wang Yoo-Shik (王瑜植) Maj.Gen. in 1925 -Kim Eung-Sung (金応善) Maj.Gen. in 1931

It is you and South Korea that would have the world believe that Koreans were all forced to serve Japan. That simply is not true.

Koreans calling for independence were tortured, Korean language and culture were banned.

Some Koreans resisted and were persecuted, other Koreans rode the economic power of the only Asian country to modernize to western standards. A great many Koreans emigrated to Japan. Yes Korean language and parts of it's culture were banned in an effort to covert Koreans to "Japanese". But they also built roads, post offices, railroads, buildings. infrastructure that Korean was unable to on it' own as a long time vassal of the Chinese Dynasties. The problem with Korea is not that they raise legitimate objections in their relationship with Japan, but that they are in denial of the other side which they whitewash in their history books.

During the 1923 Kanto earthquake, thousands of Koreans were massacred when false rumours about >Koreans >poisoning the water supplies spread.http://www.harvard-yenching.org/the-great-kanto-earthquake

Totally irrelevant to this discussion.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

yosunSep. 04, 2013 - 01:43PM JST Again I think Japan should try best to well get along with Chinese for long run. Chinese take huge part of the world >and will last as long as whole human being, therefore no matter you like it or not you can't fix it so you got to stand it!

So you suggest Japan gets on it's knees and bows to China like South Korea is doing? Democracy is far from perfect but it's a lot better than what China is selling. And it's not free.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Back on topic please.

'China not a threat' ?! - sure, tell that to the Filipinos, the Vietnamese, the Indians. Those countries have been victims of Chinese aggression very recently and they know that if you give China an inch they will take a mile.

Oh, those countries were also invaded by Japan in WW 2 but can get over the past and would rather work with Japan knowing that China is the real threat of the future

Funny, those people advocating Japan not spend more on their defense are also the ones defending Chinese action in the Senkakus - Chinese gov't paid trolls anyone?

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I just love the PRC's water internet army here and their,"The PRC isn't a threat" or better yet,"we come in peace" party line.

Infact the PRC is the greatest threat to peace in the region. They have been using their so-called new found wealth to build up and they have used this build up to bully neighboring nations.

But, one thing they didn't count on was Japan and it's response to it's aggressions.

It's public face is one thing, but it's real face covets other nations territories.

There is trouble brewing for the paper tiger and Document Number 9 is proof of this.

Slowly but surely the paper dragon sees that it's wealth will fade and when it does, so goes it's control over the people.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

It seems that Japan can only be taken seriously by its Asian neighbors, especially rising China, and become a normal nation-state if it emerges from under the American security umbrella. Japan needs to revise MacArthur’s constitution and become a nuclear-armed military power.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

sfjp330Sep. 05, 2013 - 04:17AM JST It seems that Japan can only be taken seriously by its Asian neighbors, especially rising China

China is already taking Japan very seriously, practically a fixation.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

This is where all our taxes are going in to? Japan needs to grow up... they are so envious of big toys. Could they really handle another war? IF IT came to that? We all know the answer...

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

@Resurfaced - 'IF IT came to that', it'd be 1281 revisited: The PLA Navy would be handed its butt.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

sfjp330

It is rahter strange to see you in complete agreement with PM Abe. By the way, I do not like PM Abe.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It seems the Chinese governments rhetorics are trying to oust Philippine rights from the South China sea again. Recognize the "arguments"? "This is ours and you are making trouble by claiming our land and threatening Chinese sovereignty". The international community should condemn Philippine for these actions. The latest step by PRC seem to be a lot of concrete building blocks on the shoal. Well I guess it is safe to assume that if Japan gives them an opportunity they will try the same strategy at the Senkakus. Abes plans for the budget increase seems wise.

"The Scarborough Shoal is China's intrinsic territory. The Philippines should respect China's sovereignty," he told a daily news briefing. Reuters.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Japan is increasing its military budget because Abe is an American puppet.

Japan buys US arms, the US makes money.

Arms suppliers would love a "dust up" in the Pacific because they would make TONS on it.

There is no threat from China - YET.

But if the US keeps up its plan of trying to contain the country, they may have to fight to survive.

And that would NOT be a pretty sight.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Cant agree with you Bertie. No arguments about the weapons industry. Of course they try to maximize profits in every way they can. Japan doesnt need the US to tell them that China is stepping up against US attempts to box China in. They are fully aware but have little options except to safeguard their own situation. Japan cant stop the US and China from positioning and flexing muscles in the area. But they can make sure Japan is no simple walk over during the process. It will be worth it in the long run. China and the US can solve their issues but need to measure one another strengths and determination first. Its gonna take some time.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

H3CHO Sep. 05, 2013 - 05:22PM JSTIt is rather strange to see you in complete agreement with PM Abe. By the way, I do not like PM Abe.

It is obvious that U.S. Defense budget is not sustainable. Tough decisions lie ahead and U.S. Military cuts are inevitable and Japan has to adjust. U.S. will be demanding that Japan pay greater share for their defense.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

sfjp330Sep. 06, 2013 - 03:13AM JST It is obvious that U.S. Defense budget is not sustainable. Tough decisions lie ahead and U.S. Military cuts are >inevitable and Japan has to adjust. U.S. will be demanding that Japan pay greater share for their defense.

This is hardly news. The United States has been pressing Japan nonstop for some 33 years now.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

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