World Japan’s Self Defense Forces struggling to recruit amid population crisis -

A bit related:'s-women-sailors-serve-on-frontline-of-gender-equality

Japan's women sailors serve on frontline of gender equality
Oct. 12 06:30 am JST 36 Comments

A female member of a ship boarding inspection team from the Japanese helicopter carrier Kaga checks her pistol before a training exercise in the Indian Ocean. Photo: REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon

By Tim Kelly


Women serving on Japan's biggest warship, the Kaga, are a tight-knit group on the frontline of a push to transform the Japanese navy into a mixed-gender fighting force, where men outnumber them more than 10 to one.

The Maritime Self Defense Force (MSDF) needs more women because falling birth rates mean it has too few men to crew warships in home waters or on helicopter carriers such as the Kaga, sailing in foreign waters to counter China's growing regional influence.

"Women all over the world are working in a wider number of areas and I think Japan needs to be a part of that," said petty officer Akiko Ihara, 31, standing beside one of the helicopters she helps to maintain.

A female flight deck crew member on the Japanese helicopter carrier Kaga guides a SH-60K Sea Hawk helicopter taking off in the Indian Ocean, near Indonesia. Photo: REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
The proportion of women in the Kaga's 450-strong crew is about 9 percent, a level Japan is targeting for the military overall by 2030 from 6 percent now. That would still fall short of U.S., where 15 percent of people in uniform are women, and Britain with 10 percent.

"We all work in different teams around the ship but we are all friends," Ihara added. "We do sometimes moan a little about our male colleagues."

The nine-year veteran says she has encountered no workplace discrimination, and would challenge any man who thinks women are unsuited for military life to work with her.

A female sailor practices karate in the hangar deck of the Kaga. Photo: REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
More women recruits are making the SDF a more "rounded" organization, said Ayako Yoneda, 29, a firefighter and engineer on the Kaga.

"When I first joined nine years ago there were few women and it felt like men then didn't know how to deal with us," she said. "I think the men now see things more from our perspective. The SDF has become a gentler place."

Nonetheless, the women do face sexual harassment. In July, the navy discharged a male petty officer for kissing and groping three women sailors over several months.

Japan's demographic woes are forcing it down a path taken years earlier by its U.S. ally, which lifted a ban on women on warships in 1993.

The MSDF, which let women crew ships a decade ago, could soon remove the last major barrier to female sailors by ending a ban on submarine duty, defense ministry sources have told Reuters.

Japan has one of the world's largest navies, with 45,000 crew on more than 100 vessels, including about 20 submarines, more than 40 destroyers and four helicopter carriers, such as the Kaga.

The Kaga was on its way to Sri Lanka after drills in the contested South China Sea as part of a two-month deployment in waters stretching from the Western Pacific to the Indian Ocean.

Commissioned in 2017, it is among a new generation of warships designed to accommodate mixed crews, with more toilets and bathrooms than older vessels.

Signs at the entrance to the women's segregated sleeping quarters warn men to keep out. The women inside carry electronic pagers that can be contacted via numerical keypads beside the doors.

A female sailor on the Kaga reads a book on her bed during a break after lunch. Photo: REUTERS/Kim Kyung-Hoon
Those better facilities and privacy safeguards will draw more women to sign up, the MSDF hopes.

Japan's navy struggles more to find recruits than the air force or army, as young people balk at the prospect of being cut off from social media networks on long deployments.

In 2016, for example, the airforce received 6,900 applications, versus just 3,927 for the MSDF, even though both have about the same number of enlisted personnel.

Miku Ihara, 22, a woman cadet on the Kaga, says she reads books or studies when off-duty, but misses access to Line and Instagram. Sailors are limited to sending four text emails every day when at sea.

"You just have to get used to not having it and make the most of it when you do," she added.

The presence of women on board has had one unexpected benefit on the men that report to him, says Command Master Chief Yasuharu Tohno, the most senior enlisted sailor on board.

"They shave regularly and iron their clothes," said Tohno, who joined up to an all-male fleet 35 years ago.


Well there they go, if they're anything like the US's women sailors on deployment, they'll get knocked up and start pumping out babies in no time...

That being said, I really don't know why Japan's National Earth Defense force isn't getting more recruits. It looks like a wild place to work.

Oh wait. That was the Neighborhood Earth Defense Force.....


Vivere Militare Est.
They just need to be reminded that once there was Otoya Yamaguchi, age 17 who used a traditional sword blessed by the souls of his ancestors to strike down Inejiro Asanuma, a socialist leader in 1960. He's an inspiration to their animoo with teens as mc's.
View attachment 553468
It is believed that Yamaguchi single-handedly stopped the rise of socialism in Japan. So that makes this pic even more powerful.


Welcome to Silent Hill faggots.
It is believed that Yamaguchi single-handedly stopped the rise of socialism in Japan. So that makes this pic even more powerful.
Yup and iirc even after incarceration the people hailed him as the hero of Japan. I think that's what put fear in the socialist party to just outright give up because if one student had the courage to stand up imagine an entire nation.


It is believed that Yamaguchi single-handedly stopped the rise of socialism in Japan. So that makes this pic even more powerful.
If he didn't, it would've given us an excuse to re-occupy and resume the Korean War, and actually win and stop so many problems in the world today. Hell, there's conspiracy theories Yamaguchi was supported by the U.S. government, because the "democratic" reforms we imposed enabled fucking socialists.

Takayuki Yagami

Justice is Blind, and Autistic
Maybe if they promised teens they'd get to pilot fighting mechas endowed with the souls of their birth mothers against alien invaders they wouldn't have this recruiting problem.
Just avoid talking about the mind rape or the fact that the people that made the fucking things did so to bring about the apocolypse.
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Alec Benson Leary

Creator of Asperchu
Christorical Figure
Just avoid talking about the mind rape or the fact that the people that made the fucking things did so to bring about the apocolypse.
That kind of thing is so prevalent in anime I wonder if the nukes didn't mindrape Japan into subconsciously thinking that's what war is actually about.
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As I mentioned earlier, which I brought up in another forum, this is what the South Koreans complained about in GATE:

WWII is not mentioned anywhere

Or end whenever the last Rebuild movie comes out. At least the delay brought us a good Godzilla movie.
And the delay also brought a different ending in the Evangelion manga which some feel is a bit more uplifting than the series and movies.

Plus a bunch of fanfic-esque romantic comedy spinoffs for horny otaku if you're into that sort of thing:

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Mariposa Electrique

In 2021, Shit will hit the fan 4 Chris
True & Honest Fan
They really should find a way to make IVF cheap and more accessable. Poor Japs, they're like a rare flower on the cusp of extenction.
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It’s so prevalent in anime because of how monumental that show is to the medium. People are still trying to ape Eva almost 30 years later.
People tend to give Eva too much credit when so much of it was recycled from Gunbuster. As for Anno's infamous interview, he contradicted himself multiple times since then. You have to understand the fact Eva was conceived over his butthurt that Nadia failed miserably, and originally was going to be a Honnêamise sequel, a movie which also bombed.

Fork Cartel

The 1% are literally the spawn of Satan
People tend to give Eva too much credit when so much of it was recycled from Gunbuster. As for Anno's infamous interview, he contradicted himself multiple times since then. You have to understand the fact Eva was conceived over his butthurt that Nadia failed miserably, and originally was going to be a Honnêamise sequel, a movie which also bombed.
Also barely anyone in the west knows Gunbuster exists, it was a 6-episode ova that never got exported

Since this thread was brought up again, I don't know why or how, I'm sad to find nothing new, just a few fluff pieces about the struggling JSDF, a few news pieces:

Japan may send ships to patrol off Yemen instead of Strait of Hormuz
Aug. 9 06:06 am JST 29 Comments

Japan may send vessels to patrol off Yemen rather than joining a U.S.-led coalition to protect shipping in the Strait of Hormuz amid heightened tensions with Iran, government sources said Thursday.
The administration of Prime Minister Shinzo Abe is reluctant to send the Maritime Self-Defense Force to the strait, a key sea lane through which around a fifth of the world's oil passes, out of concern that doing so could hurt Tokyo's friendly ties with Tehran.
But it is under mounting pressure from Washington to participate in the U.S. effort, dubbed Operation Sentinel, with Pentagon chief Mark Esper earlier this week urging Japan to "strongly consider" it.
As a compromise, Japan is considering sending MSDF destroyers and P-3C Orion surveillance planes to the Bab el-Mandeb Strait between Yemen and the Horn of Africa, the sources said.
"We can't just do nothing," a senior Abe administration official said.
The mission would likely be taken up by forces already engaged in anti-piracy operations off Somalia. The Japanese vessels would not be part of the U.S.-led coalition, though the area of operations would overlap.
Abe hopes to discuss the issue with U.S. President Donald Trump when they meet later this month in France on the sidelines of a Group of Seven summit, according to the sources, with a final decision dependent on how other U.S. allies opt to proceed.
Britain and Israel have announced they will participate in the coalition, but Germany has declined.
At present, officials in the Abe administration think such a mission would be possible under existing legislation.
SDF activities overseas are restricted under the war-renouncing Constitution.

JSDF resumes F-35 flight training
Thursday, Aug. 1, 1:18
JSDF resumes F-35 flight training

Japan's Defense Ministry has resumed F-35 training flights at a base in northern Japan, nearly four months after a fatal crash.
Two F-35 stealth fighters were seen leaving on a training mission from the Air Self-Defense Force base in Misawa, Aomori Prefecture, on Thursday afternoon.
A fleet of F-35s there had been grounded since April, after one crashed into the sea during a night training run.
The Defense Ministry said on Thursday morning that it would resume flying the remaining 12 jets, saying that it had taken extra steps to ensure their safe operation, including more rigorous pilot training and added aircraft inspections.
The ministry said that for the time being it would only conduct daytime training flights.
The ministry regards the F-35 as its core Self-Defense Force fighter jet, and plans to put 147 of them into service over the next 10 years.
Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya said on Thursday that as soon as the SDF pilots finish their training, they will commence patrol missions over Japan. He said he wants to make sure that there will be no delays in the deployment plan.
The mayor of Misawa City, Yoshinori Kohiyama, issued a statement on the resumption of the flights at the local base. He said he expects the Defense Ministry to do its utmost to ensure that there will be no more accidents.
And a 2 months old one:

Japan’s Peacebuilding Prowess: The Case of Marawi City

Local officials of Lanao del Sur province visits the Ground Zero (also known as the Main Battle Area) in Marawi for the first time since the end of the Battle of Marawi.
Image Credit: Philippine Information Agency
Japan’s Peacebuilding Prowess: The Case of Marawi City
It’s time for a new brand of diplomacy for Japan’s new era. Rebuilding Marawi in the Philippines is a good place to start.
By Mark Manantan and Dahlia Simangan
June 01, 2019

The Reiwa era ushers in an opportunity for Japan to reflect and refashion its position in regional and international politics — including sensitive areas such as peacebuilding. Marawi City in the Philippines could be the most strategic place to start.
Peace aspirations have informed Japanese foreign policy in the post-Cold War period. Although the pacifist doctrine has limited Japan’s military participation in the United Nations (UN) peacekeeping operations, it has allowed Japan to explore other avenues to exercise its peacekeeping role in disrupted states through noncoercive means. It has circumvented the restrictions of pacifism and found its peacebuilding niche by converting its noncombatant assets as critical actors in infrastructure construction. The Japan Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) engineering units have been instrumental in providing training and education to other troop-contributing countries, as well as improving the preparedness for emergency response. In 2016, Tokyo made a slight but significant revision, allowing the JSDF to perform “rush-and-rescue” operations for personnel working in dangerous situations. Japan’s emphasis on the human security aspect of peacebuilding established it as less interventionist and more aligned to the local sensibilities of conflict-affected communities.
Tokyo’s role has been especially noticeable in the Philippines. Japan was the top provider of overseas development assistance (ODA) to the Southeast Asian state in 2018. It is responsible for $5.98 billion or 41 percent of the Philippines’ ODA portfolio. Behind Japan are the World Bank, the Asian Development Bank, the United States, and South Korea, which have also been supporting peace efforts in Mindanao.
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Peace in Mindanao has been elusive for decades. Amidst the negotiations for the law that later created the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), an armed confrontation erupted between the government troops and Islamic State (IS) militants in the Islamic City of Marawi in May 2017. The Marawi siege lasted for five months, claimed the lives of 920 militants, 165 soldiers, and 47 civilians, and forcibly displaced 360,000 people (although these numbers are likely incomplete).
The rehabilitation of Marawi city is a crucial component of peace in Mindanao. President Rodrigo Duterte declared martial law over the whole island of Mindanao at the outbreak of the Marawi siege. The stalled rehabilitation and the slow return of the refugees run the risk of reigniting violent extremism and inciting another round of conflict. With reports of the IS militants’ regrouping and recruitment activities, the Philippine government needs to act quickly to prevent the extremist groups from capitalizing on these sources of public discontent.
However, government-led rehabilitation has been slow. In June 2017, the Inter-Agency Task Force for the Recovery, Reconstruction, and Rehabilitation of Marawi City, also known as Task Force Bangon Marawi (TFBM), was created. However, it took over a year for the TFBM to start working on the ground. Residents of Marawi have criticized the lack of local consultation during the planning phase and the authorities’ failure to obtain consent for the demolition and clearing of their houses and businesses.
In the aftermath of Marawi’s liberation, Japan immediately pledged to participate in humanitarian and peacebuilding efforts. Japan’s most recent contribution is 2 billion yen (approximately $18 million) worth of development aid to construct transcentral roads along with arterial sections spanning 20.8 kilometers. Thisfourth installation of a development aid package brings Japan’s total contribution to Marawi’s reconstruction to $36 million.
Japan’s assistance is channeled through the Japan International Cooperation Agency’s (JICA’s) two-pronged peacebuilding approach: the immediate provision and restoration of basic social services and the disbursement of development assistance for long-term rehabilitation and reconstruction of socioeconomic infrastructures. For example, the Japan Fund for Poverty Reduction (JFPR) provides emergency employment while improving livelihood support for the internally displaced persons (IDPs) of the Marawi siege.
Other foreign governments have also provided technical assistance and financial support to Marawi city. The U.S. government pledged approximately $15 million worth of foreign aid assistance and delivered two Cessna C-208 aircraft. Australia also pledged $20 million geared toward child protection and counseling services among IDPs. As of November 2018, the Philippine government has received a total of $670 million in the form of concessional financing and grants from various governments and multilateral organizations.
The Chinese government has also donated approximately $1.5 million for relief operations. This contribution, however, sits uncomfortably in the growing anti-Chinese sentiment in the Philippines.
China’s presence in the disputed West Philippine Sea, the influx of Chinese foreign workers, and Chinese nationals who are misbehaving in the country further raised public distrust toward China. Duterte recently broke away from his usual pro-China stance, but it is yet to be seen if his rhetoric will be translated into Manila’s foreign policy.
Anti-Chinese sentiment also echoes in Marawi city. Despite calls for a locally led rebuilding process, the government chose the Chinese-led Bangon Marawi Consortium (BMC) for the task. Two of the BMC firms have been previously debarred by the World Bank due to fraudulent practices, including the falsification of documents. The BMC was eventually disqualified after failing to furnish proof of financial capacity. These controversies did not stop the Philippine government from tapping another Chinese-led group, PowerChina, to lead the reconstruction of the city. These plans are yet to come into fruition while the ground zero of the Marawi siege remains inaccessible to the public.
Local voices are often silenced in high-level and top-down diplomatic peacebuilding efforts, as the case of Marawi’s rebuilding has demonstrated so far, and this is where Japan has the potential to fill the gap.
Japan’s credibility in infrastructure development is the core of its peacebuilding diplomacy. Central to Japan’s unparalleled track record in infrastructure development is not only its technical expertise but also its readiness to include local perspectives. Japan has been collaborating closely with local stakeholders to ensure that local concerns are considered throughout the peacebuilding process.
Japan’s ability to transfer skills under its engineering forte in rebuilding war-torn cities and municipalities is a notable peacebuilding diplomacy trait. It underpins the human connection aspect of the overall peacebuilding mission. Japan’s local engagement, by means of its high technical expertise and training of local partners, cultivates trust and goodwill that are essential in achieving local ownership and sustainability of peace.
Japan’s peacebuilding diplomacy is one of its untapped sources of soft power. What is missing among Japanese policymakers and diplomats, however, is a coherent strategy that highlights Japan’s robust and unique peacebuilding contributions. Adopting such a strategy could amplify the achievements and maximize the opportunities from Japan’s peacebuilding diplomacy.
The dawn of the Reiwa era is a fitting moment for Japan to conduct a deep soul-searching of its international peacebuilding role. Japan has the resources to create a compelling narrative that leverages on the multiparty and networked perspectives of its localized peacebuilding efforts. By exploring and enhancing its unique brand of peacebuilding diplomacy, Japan gains another valuable soft power asset — a highly indispensable diplomatic arsenal to shape its external environment in a very volatile geopolitical backdrop.

I wonder what the average age of the people who passed on in japan since 1994 is? Sounds to me like all their oldies are just dying off

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