Japanese Defence Strategy & Rearmament - Japan's ambitious plans & lessons from Ukraine | Summary and Q&A

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April 23, 2023
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Japanese Defence Strategy & Rearmament - Japan's ambitious plans & lessons from Ukraine

TL;DR

Japan is undergoing a major military rearmament and investment program, transforming its capabilities and strategic thinking in response to regional security concerns, including the Russian invasion of Ukraine and territorial disputes.

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Questions & Answers

Q: How has the Russian invasion of Ukraine affected Japan's defense policies?

The Russian invasion of Ukraine has prompted Japan to reassess its defense policies and invest in a major rearmament and modernization program. Japan has announced a significant increase in defense spending and is focusing on acquiring new capabilities to deter and respond to aggression.

Q: What are some of the key areas of focus in Japan's military rearmament program?

Japan is prioritizing the acquisition of stand-off capabilities, including long-range missiles and hypersonic weapons. It is also enhancing its air and missile defense systems and expanding and modernizing its defense industrial base. Additionally, Japan is seeking to strengthen its alliance with the United States and collaborate with like-minded countries in the region.

Q: How does Japan view its strategic position and security environment?

Japan sees itself as facing security challenges in the Indo-Pacific region, including territorial disputes, the nuclearization of North Korea, and China's increasing assertiveness. It is concerned about unilateral changes to the status quo by coercion or force and aims to shape a security environment that discourages such actions.

Q: How does Japan plan to leverage its defense capabilities in collaboration with other countries in the Indo-Pacific region?

Japan aims to strengthen its security cooperation with like-minded countries in the Indo-Pacific, including through joint exercises, information sharing, and capacity building. It views these partnerships as essential for maintaining regional stability and deterring potential adversaries.

Q: What are some of the challenges Japan's military rearmament program might face?

One challenge is the need for Japan to balance its defense modernization efforts with other priorities, such as managing its high government debt and an aging population. Additionally, Japan's defense industry may face constraints due to limited production scale and low profit margins. The program may also face public opinion challenges, as pacifism remains deeply ingrained in Japanese society.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Japan is undergoing a significant military rearmament and investment program in response to changing regional security dynamics, including the Russian invasion of Ukraine and territorial disputes with neighboring countries.

  • Japan's defense strategy focuses on shaping a security environment that does not tolerate unilateral changes to the status quo, deterring and responding to coercion, and maintaining the ability to disrupt and defeat invasion forces.

  • The plan includes the acquisition of stand-off capabilities, such as long-range missiles and hypersonic weapons, enhancing air and missile defense capabilities, and expanding and modernizing the overall defense industrial base.

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