U.S., Japanese and French military exercises, one “is an unprecedented military movement”

The Japan Self-Defense Forces held joint military exercises with the U.S. Marine Corps and the French Army in May, with Germany and Britain to follow. (Diagram)

The United States, Japan, France and Australia, which belong to four continents, will conduct joint maritime exercises for the first time in the East China Sea from the 14th of this month, while the first land military exercises of the United States, Japan and France on Japanese soil have already started on the 11th. The joint exercises of the course, surprisingly rare, including urban “alley warfare”, so that the outside world concern.

Japan’s Self-Defense Forces and U.S. and French forces launched on the 11th in Kyushu’s outlying islands defense training, will continue until May 17. Kyodo News reported that the highlight of this round of training is: May 14 to 15 by the Japanese and French ships from the western coast of Kyushu off the aircraft to transport troops across Miyazaki Prefecture and Kagoshima Prefecture, Kirishima exercise ground, helicopter assault operations and street fighting, followed by amphibious operations exercises. The first three days of the exercise, the participating troops will be stationed at the Aigaura base, to jointly develop the above training operations plan, and to confirm the combat techniques.

The Hong Kong media pointed out on the 12th that Aigaura is the location of the headquarters of the Japanese Surface Mobile Corps. The unit was established in 2018 and is modeled after the U.S. Marine Corps, which is responsible for defending Japan’s remote islands.

The Japanese Yomiuri Shimbun reported that this is the first time the Japanese Land Self-Defense Force has conducted an exercise with the French Army within Japan. The total number of participants is about 220, including about 100 from the Japanese Self-Defense Forces, such as the Surface Mobile Corps, and about 60 each from the U.S. Marines and the French Army. Japan, the U.S. and France are deepening their defense cooperation to strengthen their deterrence against “Chinese (communist) countries acting hegemonistically in the Indo-Pacific region. In addition, from the 14th, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force will conduct joint training with U.S., French and Australian troops in the East China Sea.

According to Takashi Kawakami, a professor at Takushoku University in Japan, “There is no doubt that this military exercise is a deterrent to the increasingly aggressive behavior of the Chinese (Communist) countries in the region. In the long run, Europe’s commitment in the Indo-Pacific region may strengthen the relationship between Japan and NATO, which is what former Prime Minister Abe advocated.”

According to Kyodo News 12, Kan plans to attend the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore in early June and deliver a speech emphasizing a “free and open Indo-Pacific strategy.” Japanese Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi will also accompany him and meet with U.S. Defense Secretary Austin in Singapore, where the two sides will confirm their consensus on the situation in the East China Sea and the South China Sea and the increased military pressure from mainland China on the Taiwan Strait, demonstrating Japan-U.S. solidarity.

According to the Nihon Keizai Shimbun, the French army is “volunteered” to participate in this military exercise, Japan and the United States with the French army training fleet “Jeanne d’Arc” call on Japan, adjusting the military exercise schedule.

The sudden participation of France, which has not concluded a treaty with Japan, in the Japanese military exercises was “an unprecedented military move” for the Chinese Communist Party and neighboring countries.

According to an analysis by Rokkang Hop, a lecturer at Futamatsu Gakusha University, France has territories such as New Caledonia and permanent bases in the Pacific. If the Chinese Communist Party can move across the East and South China Seas into the Pacific Ocean, it will affect French overseas dependencies next.

“As China (the Communist Party) accelerates its entry into maritime activities, France itself is once again discovering the strategic importance of its territories in the region.” Japanese media also said that Britain and Germany have also indicated that they will send ships to the Indo-Pacific region and are discussing joint exercises with Japan’s Self-Defense Forces.

French Navy helicopter carrier Jeanne d’Arc with a range of 3.25 million kilometers.

Australian warships joined the U.S. and Japanese fleets for military exercises in the South China Sea.