politics

Japan to boost space cooperation with U.S. in revised policy

13 Comments
By MARI YAMAGUCHI

Japan said Monday it will step up its defense capability in space and improve its ability to detect and track missiles, while cooperating with the United States in response to what it called a growing threat from North Korea and China.

A revised basic space policy adopted by the government’s strategic space development panel endorses plans for a number of small-scale intelligence-gathering satellites to quickly assess North Korean missile movements.

In civil aerospace, Japan will seek to cooperate with the U.S. in sending astronauts on an American lunar mission.

The revised policy is be adopted by the Cabinet on Tuesday.

Japan aims to double the scale of its space industry from the current 1.2 trillion yen ($11 billion) by the early 2030s.

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe pledged Monday that his government will promote investment in future strategic areas such as technology to clean up or avoid hitting space debris, as he set a goal for Japan to become “a future independent space power.”

Abe has pushed for Japan’s Self-Defense Force to expand its international role and capability by bolstering cooperation and weapons compatibility with the U.S., as it increasingly works alongside American troops amid concerns about the increasing capabilities of China and North Korea.

Japan launched a new space defense unit in May to monitor and counter threats to the country’s satellites.

The Space Operations Squadron, part of Japan’s Air Self-Defense Force, started with 20 members and is expected to grow to about 100 once it is fully operational in 2023.

The launch of the squadron comes amid growing Japanese concern that China and Russia are seeking ways to interfere, disable or destroy satellites.

The squadron will cooperate with the U.S. Space Command that President Donald Trump established last year, as well as Japan’s space exploration organization, the Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency.

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©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

13 Comments
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"I live in japan and have never been threatened by both these countries.

I have been to China many times and lived there for a while. Very nice, warm people. Police a little scary." 

Do not be naïve.  You personally may not feel threatened but it was only a few years ago the Peoples Daily, the official mouthpiece of the Chinese Communist Party, referred to the Ryukyu Islands as "Japanese occupied China".  Think about that.  China also claims the Senkaku Islands as its own.  It's a lie but that doesn't stop the Chinese from threatening Japan over them.  We have seen China take island from Vietnam and Philippines that they desired to build military bases on and did so brazenly because they knew neither nation had the means to stop them.  Their fishing boats routinely attack South Korean and Vietnamese fishing boats in international waters, sometimes even inside South Korea's EEZ.  If Japan appears weak enough to defeat easily China will attack Japanese interests and take Japanese territory as well.  I have family in Shanghai and some familiarity with the place.  China has changed a lot since Chairman Xi declared himself the new "Helmsman", eliminated term limits on his presidency and eliminated age limits on high party service so he could keep his loyalists in place.  They are going back to the days of Mao and the Red Guards.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Japan. Need other countries to remain relevant.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

 The Chinese will subjugate Japan if given the chance. Don't be naïve.

They already controlled Japan.

Taiwanese Japanese, with ties to the CCP, have accumulated many assets in Japan and paved a hole within the system to allow mainland Chinese flushing their cashes to buy out all important real estates in Japan. They can vote and have political power as any Japanese people.

Most of Ginza and all of Kabukicho are Chinese-owned. The Chinese Communist Party also holds all performing, high growth assets of Japan as hostages in China as well. Japan is more dependent on China and Chinese investors than anybody in the Western world. The US and EU are willing to forgo their assets in China if there is a decoupling. Japan finds it impossible to decouple! Keidanren is too entrenched in the pockets of Chinese politicians and businesspeople.

Freaking Yakuza is not even a force that Chinese triads or Vietnamese syndicates care about nowadays. Yakuza is the shadow force that governs Japanese national stability, and now it is merely a shadow of its former self as Chinese triads and Vietnamese syndicates dominate the Japanese underworld, in term of profits.

Japan is evenly dominated over by China and the USA.

basically USA is trying to squeeze as much tax money from japan and is using Abe’s deflated ego to get it. $8billion for US continued occupation, agreement to only buy silly US weapons, blah blah blah.

Exactly, this is why I don't support rewriting the Article 9 without Japanese true autonomy from American influence. The US will put Japan into the endless war gang with the UK and Australia. Only wasting countless amount of Japannese taxpayer dollars.

When the US pulls all of its force from Japan, very impossible, then Article 9 rewrite will lend some merits.

We did not go in debt because we spend on the military. We did not go in debt because we spend money on the space program... That has more to do with terrible aggrements Japan signed in the 80s.

Faustian curse. Japan accepted the US aids to rebuild their economy but Japanese people became too greedy to take everything for granted. Germans received the same aids but they weren't greedy and knew that they have to be independent away from American aids. Japan abused the exorbitant privilege, granted by the USA, to make themselves richer without paying back a fair share for other allies of the US and USA itself. President Reagan put a brake against Japanese abuse of American economic/financial privileges. The bubble economy collapsed, and Japan loses its economic edge against China and Asian Tigers. Soon, it will be Vietnam and India.

This is the reason why China and the EU don't like the US at all.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@akie, from all the wuhao I have seen post, yours are the most colorful :) still wrong but fun to read

0 ( +1 / -1 )

improving and building neighborhood ties would be more lucrative then getting milked dry by the US.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

The nations of the world have agreed to cooperate at Antarctica, perhaps because the environment is so unforgiving. Likewise, some degree of cooperation in space makes sense. For instance, IMO, all manned space probes should have the capability to dock with each other, in case of an emergency situation. It would also be a good idea for the nations of Earth to agree that space should be a non-militarized area.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I think the expanding of defense capability for space and cooperation with US are diplomatically needed.

Sea power , land power and next is added a space power? (How should I call the power in space )

I head that China has been developing rapidly in a space industry during plans for space shuttles in NASA was suspended (cancelled).

At the point, not only Japan but also any allied countries with US and EU might be necessary to take any technical developments each other.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

in response to what it called a growing threat from North Korea and China.

I live in japan and have never been threatened by both these countries.

I have been to China many times and lived there for a while. Very nice, warm people. Police a little scary.

basically USA is trying to squeeze as much tax money from japan and is using Abe’s deflated ego to get it. $8billion for US continued occupation, agreement to only buy silly US weapons, blah blah blah.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Lots of countries waking up after the SpaceX historic flight. The writing is in the wall. Japan doesn't want to be left behind.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

There is no future for anti China policy, be it in space, or on earth. As a leader of 120 million people, it is more than stupid for Abe not being able to see what the world is heading in next 10 years. Think again, Abe.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

If you actually read the article you'll realize it can protect Japan by tracking missile activity from North Korea. A country which fired missiles over Japan and threaten with Nuclear strike.

They even want to cooperate to send astronauts to the moon another benefit for closer cooperation.

We did not go in debt because we spend on the military. We did not go in debt because we spend money on the space program... That has more to do with terrible aggrements Japan signed in the 80s.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Better to pay your taxes to Tokyo than to Beijing.  Strength and the perception that the possessor of that strength is willing to use it are all the communist Chinese understand.  The Chinese will subjugate Japan if given the chance.  Don't be naïve.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Your tax money at work

1 ( +5 / -4 )

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