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Japan’s Abe shocks world with huge defense budget plan

Editor: Li Kun 丨CCTV.com

08-06-2015 17:57 BJT

By Han Xudong, National Defense University

The Japanese media has forecasted that the 2016 national defense budget would surpass the 5 trillion yen mark, about 250 billion RMB, which is record-breaking for the country. Not only were the Japanese surprised; but so were its neighbor countries and the international community as well. This reflects the Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s aggressive efforts to exert the nation’s military power.

Abe hopes to draw closer ties with the United States. The Abe government’s “New Security Acts” are not supported by the majority of the Japanese. Abe’s critics at home have denounced it as a “War Bill”, while the international community has criticized it as an “Act of War”. Nevertheless, US President Barack Obama’s administration continues to demand that Japan boost their military strength.

Japan’s Diet (parliament) remains indecisive over whether to vote in favor or against the “New Security Acts”. Accordingly, Abe’s government has spread news of huge defense investment outlays and large-scale purchases of US weapons through the media to infer to the US that if the Diet does not stop the New Security Acts, then Japan will offer US advantages. Apparently, the US is playing a decisive role in the passage of the Acts.

Once the “New Security Acts” are adopted, Japan will begin massive deployment of new weapons and equipment purchase orders, most of which will come from the US. The Abe government will soon change its militia to a “defense force” once the Acts get passed, so it’s necessary to increase the intensity of military operations in the international arena.

Japan and the US intend to accelerate military integration. The Japan self-defense force has intentions to participate in some US military operations abroad, while its systems and weaponry would be mainly based for homeland defense.

Tokyo seeks to adjust the structure and deployment of troops to meet the needs of military operations at home and abroad. Once the “New Security Acts” are passed, Japan’s self-defense forces may soon turn into a pure “defense force”.

Two major changes would emerge: Improving the structure of the defense force; and adjusting the international defense force deployment to meet Japan’s defense strategy and international demand. A few days ago, the Japan media has revealed that the Abe government will build a joint military group for land, sea and air forces in certain areas of the country.

Finally, Abe wants to strengthen its dominance on “hot spot” issues and to seize initiatives. The passage of the “New Security Acts” will enable the Abe government to raise the military presence nationwide. The Japan national defense force could potentially provoke military conflicts when it feels necessary. Abe government’s drastic increase of defense spending next year appears to be a proactive strategy that expresses their military ambitions for the future. It could also be interpretated as one of the important and substantial measures taken by the Abe government to promote its militarism.

 

 

( The opinions expressed here do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Panview or CCTV.com. )

 

 

Panview offers a new window of understanding the world as well as China through the views, opinions, and analysis of experts. We also welcome outside submissions, so feel free to send in your own editorials to "globalopinion@vip.cntv.cn" for consideration.

Panview offers an alternative angle on China and the rest of the world through the analyses and opinions of experts. We also welcome outside submissions, so feel free to send in your own editorials to "globalopinion@vip.cntv.cn" for consideration.

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