Monday, November 22, 2010

将来の日米同盟の提案 A proposal for a future Japanese/American alliance

So do we really need a Japanese/American military alliance? Well, strictly for the defense of Japan from any possible enemy, no we don't. I have shown that Japan can defend itself, in my post the third Japanese Chinese war.


So if the purpose of the alliance is not to protect Japan, what then is it's purpose? Well, the main use of US bases in Japan is power projection of US force around the world. But I think it is time for the alliance to evolve to a new stage.


But would we need so many US troops constantly based in Japan?


No. An interesting example is the Philippines.

America has a Visiting Forces Agreement, where they come back and help the Philippines on a temporary basis if such help is needed.


In the above link, we see that the Philippine Navy is weak, it only has 21 patrol vessels, none of them have any missile capability, and they are old.


Also, please note that in the above and below link, the Philippine Air Force does not posses a single combat jet fighter.


Yet China has made no aggressive move against the main Philippine islands. The point of dispute with China is over control of various islands in the Spratly group in the South China Sea. And also note the US refuses to get drawn into promises to defend those islands from China.


I have seen the lines that China has drawn on maps of the Pacific, but seriously, China even lacks the ability to invade the Philippines.


I think part of the problem here is pride. China sees itself not as a developing country, as Americans think of China, but as country with about the longest history in the world. Now, after several hundred years of humiliation by Western countries, it is gaining enough military power to defend itself.


Look at the link below. It is about the Russian aircraft carrier Varyag. Construction on the ship was stopped when the Soviet Union started to collapse in 1990. In 1998, it was bought by a Chinese business man, the idea was to turn it into a hotel and casino combo in Macao.


A rather odd choice, don't you think? Wouldn't it be easier and cheaper just to build a hotel that looks like a ship?


One problem with the ship was that since she was not completed, her engines had never been started and were inoperable. She had to be towed by tugs from Sevastopol to China.


In any case, the ship ended up docked not in Macao, but Dairen Naval port. And she is now painted in the Chinese Naval paint scheme.


On the website below, look at and click the photos on the left side.



You will see that China has three aircraft carrier theme parks, two with the former Soviet Carriers Minsk and Kiev, and one with a replica of the US carrier Nimitz.


A country with THREE aircraft carrier theme parks? I think it is strange. It suggests to me that China has an inferiority complex about military power.


OK, in my previous post, I described how Japanese alone without American help can defeat a Chinese invasion attempt.


As I have said, the Philippine Navy has only a few patrol type warships. And no fighter aircraft. The Philippine Army has some 120,000 troops.


But they would be no match in case of war with China. Now some people are panicking and saying that if America withdraws from Okinawa, China will invade the next day.


But then why hasn't China invaded the Philippines? If China truly wants access to the Central Pacific, wouldn't the Philippines be an easier target than Japan?


I think the answer goes like this. It really doesn't gain them anything.


I think there are some officers in the Chinese government and military who are feeling martial pride, and drawing lines on sea maps.


Yet there are other officials who have more common sense, and see no reason to provoke war. A war China would be sure to lose.


Now let me talk a little more about Americans. Americans are people full of fear. They try to create a world 100% free of risk. Recently, every time some Al Qaeda terrorist makes a bomb attempt, Americans rush around in panic trying to devise a counter measure.


When the guy with bomb in his shoe was stopped by other passengers from exploding his device, now people have to take off their shoes for inspection before boarding their aircraft. When another terrorist tried to set off a bomb in his underwear, we have the body scanner machines that see us completely naked.


If you refuse a body scanner search, you must be searched by hand, with TSA (Transportation Security Authority) officers touching your genitals in front of other waiting passengers. If you refuse both, you can be investigated and fined $11,000.

全身スキャナーを拒否した場合、TSA(Transportation Security Authority, 運輸保安局)の検査官が身体検査を行い、待っている他の乗客の前で、性器をさわります。両方を断ると、警察調査と罰金が$11,000です。

In the above link, we see aircraft security professionals talk about what is truly needed for aircraft security, reinforced cockpit doors and passengers fighting back. It was passengers fighting back that defeated the shoe bomber and the underwear bomber.


Finally, large numbers of Americans are beginning to protest against these invasive security procedures as a violation of privacy.


Yet American officials, afraid of being accused of doing nothing, overreact. And some companies make a lot of money with new and useless security equipment.


The recent trouble over the Senkaku islands is exactly the same. It was only a Chinese fishing boat with an aggressive captain. Yet the American side and some Japanese people are acting as if Japan was in Great Danger.


It was just a fishing boat. And in my previous post, the third Japanese Chinese war, I have proven that China lacks the military capability to attack Japan at this time.


I am aware that China is increasing it's Naval activity. Well this can be combatted by a combination of building more ships ourselves, and negotiations.


And perhaps part of the reason for the Chinese buildup is fear of the American military based in Japan.


But again, at the present time, China cannot invade Japan or even Taiwan.


So I think the future of the Japanese/American military alliance can be a combination of visiting forces rotating through Japan, US forces temporarily based in Japan, and pre positioned stocks of US military equipment.


The Cold War war is long over. We no longer need US forces in Japan on hair trigger alert. If a military crises does occur, a build up towards that crises will occur. This will allow time for US forces to transit to Japan.


But the future need of US forces in Japan is unlikely. All we need to do in Japan is to keep building enough new warships to keep pace with China.


I have before written about cadre level units and pre positioned equipment.


In the link below, it describes pre positioning. This is equipment that is stored on ship near an area of likely trouble.


In this link, we have 88 tanks, 54 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles, 331 other tracked vehicles, and 849 wheeled vehicles, stored on 10 merchant ships. This is enough equipment for a mechanized Army Brigade.

In an emergency, US troops would fly in to link up with the equipment. Within a week or so of an emergency, they could all be linked up and ready to fight.


Certainly, as I have proven in my third Japanese Chinese war post, the Japanese Armed Forces could hold off any potential enemy until then.


Also, bringing US military dependents back to the US would be a cost saver. We would only need a cadre, a skeleton crew, of US troops actually based in Japan to maintain and oversee the equipment.


The same procedure can be applied to US air units. In Japan we store munitions and spare parts for American aircraft. In an emergency, the aircraft fly in, ground crew flies in by transport aircraft. They could be operational within days of a "GO" order.


This would also be cheaper for America, as they would only pay rent for their equipment. I don't think Japan should pay any host Nation support, as Japan can provide for it's own security.


I think these ideas present a much more rational idea for the Japanese American alliance. I do realize that America uses bases in Japan to support it's wars in the Middle East. Again, this does not mean large units need to be forward based in Japan. The most important bases in this regard would be Kadena, Yokota, and Yokosuka. Yokota and Kadena would serve a transport function to the conflict in the Middle East, Yokosuka as ship maintenance facility.


Other bases could revert to Japan.


But we can really cut down on Marine and Air Force combat units based in Japan, without damaging Japanese security.


We should not panic so much, and we should not always live in fear.


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