politics

Japan's plan to buy 17 V-22 Osprey aircraft moves forward

35 Comments
By Tim Kelly and Nobuhiro Kubo

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35 Comments
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Wow, didn't Japan demonized these copters? Now they want to buy them?

1 ( +5 / -4 )

Smart move, a very capable aircraft that will increase japanese capabilities.

3 ( +5 / -2 )

It seems that Japan provokes China and war is coming up to Japan and US sooner or later. And military business companies would be happy about it.

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Where are all the people who were crying about how dangerous these 'American vehicles' are?

1 ( +8 / -7 )

It seems that USA can still occupy Japan by selling "protection" and at the same time force Japan to buy only USA made weapons for their protection. Its a win-win situation. The next step is the fooled young japanese that will join the self defense army die at some strange war against "terrorism" that USA will create. Because we are allies..

-6 ( +4 / -10 )

siniestro. Its a win-win situation. I didn't see any Japanese complaining when the US helicopters and Ospreys assisted with relief efforts during operation Tomodachi. Do you really expect Japan to shop elsewhere for new toys? Russia?

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Wow, didn't Japan demonized these copters? Now they want to buy them?

Bargaining tactic.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

It's been in operation since 1989 and has proven itself in combat. The Japanese will improve it further under license like the F-16s which were significantly improved. It's a good plan for the Japanese ASDF to stay ahead with proven technology. None of China's military technologies or designs have been proven in combat. While Japanese engineers can develop their technology thoroughly from ground up with support from original manufacturers, Chinese engineers make guesses and try their luck on reverse engineering

4 ( +6 / -2 )

smith

It seems that people got accustomed to Ospreys flying. They are quiet because there have been no major accident so far except Okinawan and other Air bases. Most people are quiet but they don't think Ospreys are always very safe. Accident may happen someday in the middle of the town. That's people worry about.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

"Most people are quiet but they don't think Ospreys are always very safe."

Ah, the silent majority factor. Can't these robots understand that accidents can just happen, fact of life. Weather an aircraft, automobile, motorbike or pedestrian.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Kwatt: in other words, the fears were completely unfounded and the hatred complete bias. All you needed to say.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

So after all the brouhaha by local J-politicians against the the Americans flying these contraptions over Japanese towns because they are too dangerous, Japan is going to by them too? Figure the logic...

4 ( +4 / -0 )

sillygirlMay. 08, 2015 - 07:15AM JST Wow, didn't Japan demonized these copters? Now they want to buy them?

No. "Japan" never demonized them. Only the anti-US military protesters did.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

waste of money, I have read the 4 Marine Ospreys are next to useless in Nepal

-8 ( +1 / -9 )

Most aircraft are useless in mountainous terrain. Plus there are windy up-down drafts limiting their efforts. Japan could use a few Ospreys, not 17.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

I have read the 4 Marine Ospreys are next to useless in Nepal

Uh-huh, next to useless?

The U.S. Marine Corps Osprey flew to far-eastern Nepal, landing in a a village, members of the Nepalese military sprinted to the aircraft to grab its cargo of canvas tents and tarpaulin from the World Food Program.

Five minutes later, the cargo bay was empty and the Osprey lifted into the air and flew off to reload.

Many of the hardest hit hilltops and valleys of the Himalayan nation are still cut off from regular supplies as the massive earthquake triggered landslides that have covered roads, rivers and hiking paths.

The Osprey is called a tilt-rotor aircraft because it can rotate its engines, allowing it to take off and land like a helicopter but fly like an airplane.

That gives it the ability to carry more cargo and go further distances than a helicopter but still be able to land in areas without runways.

Of course landing in a mountain villages is easy. The thin air makes it difficult to hover while all the dust kicked up can make it impossible to see. One landing had to be abandoned because the dust storm was too dense.

But, the Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft that should make it much easier to reach remote areas.

It's so far beyond not being useless and many, many in Nepal are grateful for it.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I am told only one of the Ospreys is being used at all. The strong rotor wash is a danger to the people it is suppose to help. So the Osprey sends debris in all directions upon landing. The people of Japan do not want them and see the Americans using them as being disrespectful. I can tell you they are noisy and the strong rotor wash makes them dangerous. The only reason Japan is buying them is to please America. Abe is an apple polisher and unable to make his own decisions beyond stupid.

So tell me how this craft with the strong rotor wash makes any sort of sense? Of course the biggest problem with the Osprey is its EXPENSE. A new Osprey cost 68 million American. The cost for a new CH-47F is 32 million less than 1/2 the costs. The CH-47 J is being used in Japan and is much more cost effective. Japan can deploy them at 2 to 1 in costs and operating costs are less than 1/2. Rebuilding the CH-47 comes to 8.5 million American or 8 aircraft for the price of 1.

What is really impressive is the CH-47 has a better payload and is proven technology. While slower it will not damage the airfields it uses and costs less to operate. Oh one Osprey does not replace 2 CH-47s and in fact the CH-47 has a better payload. So for less that the cost of 1 Osprey 2 new CH-47s can be deployed with more than double the payload. The Self Defense Force is a defensive not offensive force. We need to stick with the safe and proven and not yield from pressure from Washington to buy things that are not needed for our defense.

-7 ( +1 / -8 )

The CH47 is also way outdated technology been used since 1962 and does not have the range or speed of the Osprey.And is pricey.

Also noisy as they often fly over my home, Japan was always interested in them, Okinawans are against them.

Look at which helivoptersy crashed in civilian areas into schools, etc.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

the CH-47F doesnt have the speed or the range of the Osprey ,up to 500kph. while the CH-47 is great for lift heavy loads, the Osprey can get troops to place faster and further. and it can be refueled during flight. so there are many advantages over the CH-47

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Silence is deafening!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@YuriOtani: Very good points but your forgot to mention fuel cost? Osprey = USD 13.75 p/NM Chinook = USD 53.95 p/NM http://helicopters.axlegeeks.com/compare/24-60/Bell-BOEING-V-22-Osprey-vs-Boeing-CH-47D-F-Chinook

Japan wants to up their military power and being an island nation, this bird makes a good investment. The Osprey is quicker at getting to and from places and lands/lifts in tight areas just as the Chinook does. It is just a new bird with more capabilities hence the price.

This is the way Japan is going, might as well use similar equipment with the forces who will be training with.

FYI... 4 Osprey are being used: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-32572533

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Our local JASDF base is noisy enough without these.

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

YuriOtani: "The people of Japan do not want them and see the Americans using them as being disrespectful."

Hate to break it to you, Yuri, but if the "people of Japan" didn't want them, the "people of Japan" wouldn't be buying them (and all those whining about the Ospreys, save you, no longer doing so!). You're the only one on here being disrespectful, living in the US while constantly disrespecting it, then slandering the military that protects the land of your ancestors from becoming part of China, and spitting on their veterans.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It seems that Japan needs the best weapons and armaments to protect its own country whether US military bases are there or not. Abe thinks that Japan may not be able to count on American military forces in the future, so SDF would have to build up strong military. Abe may want to take over the half of US military roles in Okinawa one by one in maybe 10 years.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Japan is an American client state. Once you understand that the rest falls into place. The Chinese are busy acquiring their own clients states from Central America to Africa and will be good customers for Chinese military hardware in the coming decades.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

Japan is an American client state.

It's popcorn time!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Chinese military hardware. Hmm, well their SKS is a piece of crap. Cannot cheaply copy nor modify a real AK- which by the way are only accurate up to about 300-350m. The Chinese one's jamm-up every 7-8 round bursts.

Wonder what could be said about their other military hardware feats, which really haven't been put to test in combat. Let's face it, Chinese products are decent, cheap, but always lacking precision quality especially when pulled right off the line.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Japan does not need the expensive osprey with its limited capabilities. For the price of 17 ospreys Japan can upgrade its entire fleet of CH-47 J and have money left over for flight ops. So the osprey is faster well not enough to count and the CH-47 can be refueled in midair if required. I say NO to this new American overpriced toy.

FYI the US Army is not buying ospreys but updating their current fleet of CH-47. Lastly the sale to Japan is not final and perhaps Tokyo will see the light and cancel the order.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

It's not $3 billion, it's $3.6 billion for 17 ospreys.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Okinawans may as well just give up and commit suicide. Even if they got the Americans to leave the prefecture, the JSDF will STILL have Ospreys there! ;-P

FYI the US Army is not buying ospreys but updating their current fleet of CH-47.

That would be because the U.S. Air Force bars any attempts by the U.S. Army to purchase the same kind of warplanes that the Air Force has. When the Air Force started pushing to eliminate the A-10 "Warthog" from its flight lines, the Army jumped up and said they would take them ALL because the Warthogs do their job (Close Air Support) infinitely better than the F-16s the Air Force was trying to offer as an alternative. The Air Force objected on the grounds that THEY were the air-arm of the U.S. military and the Army should stay on the ground where they belong. So while the Army has VIP transport planes and helicopters, anything that looks like a plane and can go into a battle must be kept out of the Army's hands (according to the Air Force).

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

And I say NO to updating those old Vietnam era CH-47's. "Updating things" surely something japan needs to do to its defense, gov & society.

Too bad people like you,YuriOtani, resist change & stick with the old. The very problem japan has suffered last two decades. When there's a fork in the road, you just pause only to take the least risky path.

Don't be the nail to stick out?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Wc626: "Too bad people like you,YuriOtani, resist change & stick with the old."

She only resists change if it involves the people she loves to hate -- the US (despite choosing to live there). If it were made in Japan you can bet she'd order a new Osprey herself and recommend tours around Japanese SDF bases in Okinawa (after those lousy, good-for-nothing greedy Americans left!). Just for spite she'd rather have the old choppers 'updated' and fall apart before the Chinese fleet that takes over her homeland if the Americans were to have left.

She's just a little more emotional and irrational when it comes to the US presence in Okinawa. If it were just your normal, run of the mill complainers around the bases they aren't present on this thread because suddenly since the Japanese government military will have them they're no longer the 'devil' or 'enemy' they were when protested against a few months back.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

So, yeah, for those who don't read the Japanese press.

The question of whether the Izumo-class helicopter destroyer is an aircraft carrier or not is now making the rounds.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wc626 the osprey is dead end tech and of no use to Japan. I see them as flying coffins and dangerous to those on the ground. For relief work the CH-47 works very well and is updated technology like the 737 Next. Japan can not afford to waste money on unproven tech and just what will 17 machines do for Japan?

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I wonder where these Ospreys will be deployed? At any rate 17 is a small number but at least it's a start!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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