An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Jan. 12, 2023

U.S. and Japanese Leaders Chart Path to Strengthen 'Cornerstone' Alliance

By Jim Garamone DOD News

WASHINGTON -- U.S. and Japanese security officials have announced a series of initiatives that will strengthen the alliance between the two nations and help guarantee a free and open Indo-Pacific.

https://www.defense.gov/Portals/_default/Skins/DGOV2/Resources/img/play-hover.png 

Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III and Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken hosted Japanese Foreign Minister Hayashi Yoshimasa and Japanese Defense Minister Hamada Yasukazu at the Security Consultative Talks in Washington.

Commonly called the 2+2 talks, U.S. officials reiterated the alliance with Japan is the "cornerstone" for security in the region. The talks further deepen an already close relationship, occurring as China becomes more assertive, Russia has invaded a sovereign nation and North Korea is developing nuclear weapons and the means to deliver them.

The talks are in advance of Friday's meeting between President Joe Biden and Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida at the White House.

Both Austin and Blinken expressed unqualified support for the decisions manifested in Japan's new national security strategy, national defense strategy and their decision to increase defense spending. "There is clear strategic alignment between the visions of President Biden and Prime Minister Kishida," Austin said. "It is a shared commitment to uphold the rules-based international order and to strengthen resilient partnerships around the globe. And the essential US-Japan alliance is at the center of these efforts."

The security and defense leaders also made a historic alliance decision to optimize American force posture in Japan "by forward-stationing more versatile, mobile and resilient capabilities," Austin said. "These actions will bolster deterrence in the region and allow us to defend Japan and its people more effectively."

Given the increasing complexity of the security environment in the Indo-Pacific, "we've decided that the 12th Artillery Regiment would remain in Japan and be reorganized into the12th Marine Littoral Regiment by 2025," Austin said. "We will equip this new formation with advanced intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance as well as anti-ship and transportation capabilities that are relevant to the current and future threat environments."

This is a new type of Marine formation that is nimble, quick and suited for the vast distances of the region. There are approximately 50,000 American service members based in Japan today. The regiment will consist of between 1,800 and 2,000 Marines but will not increase the overall U.S. presence in the nation. DOD officials said that the unit will receive the new Navy/Marine Expeditionary Ship Interdiction System, or NMESIS, as it is called.

The officials discussed the temporary deployment of an American MQ-9 Uncrewed Aerial Vehicle unit to Kanoya Air Base in southern Japan to increase presence over the East China Sea.

"We also discussed updating our alliances, roles and missions so that Japan can more actively contribute to regional security alongside the United States and other like-minded partners," Austin said. "In our meeting today, we strongly endorsed Japan's decision to acquire a counterstrike capability, and we affirm that close coordination on employing this capability will strengthen the US-Japan alliance."

The officials also determined that an attack "to, from or within space" could lead to the invocation of Article V of the U.S.-Japan Security Treaty. This is part of the treaty being updated to reflect current trends: In 2019, the U.S. and Japan included cyber as a military domain that would be covered under Article V. This clarifies that space is also included in the treaty. Article V states: "Each Party recognizes an armed attack against either Party in the territories under the administration of Japan would be dangerous to its own peace and safety and declares that it would act to meet the common danger in accordance with its constitutional provisions and processes."

Japan is also expanding its participation in efforts to maintain regional peace and stability and will work with U.S. officials to accelerate work on "evolving alliance roles and missions and to employ interoperable and advanced capabilities."

Part of this is Japan will establish a permanent joint headquarters and will work with U.S. officials on the command-and-control arrangements with an emphasis on interoperability with U.S. forces.

The two militaries will also expand joint/shared use of facilities in Japan and increase exercises. This will include exercises in Japan's Southwest Islands.

The Indo-Pacific is a huge area comprising more than 50 percent of the globe. The two nations agreed to strengthen activities with allies and partners in the region including Australia, South Korea and India. Both nations also welcomed greater engagement in the Indo-Pacific by Euro-Atlantic partners.

CONNECT WITH USINDOPACOM
Facebook

Like Us
Twitter
337,605
Follow Us

ENGAGE & CONNECT MORE WITH PACOM

                                                 

IN THE USINDOPACOM NEWS
U.S. Indo-Pacific Commander Strengthens Cooperation in Visit to Timor-Leste
U.S. Indo-Pacific Commander Strengthens Cooperation in Visit to Timor-Leste
Feb. 3, 2023 - Adm. John C. Aquilino, Commander of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, visited Timor-Leste Feb. 1-3, to strengthen our security cooperation and enduring partnership between our countries.In meetings with President José Ramos-Horta,...

7th Fleet Travels to the Republic of Korea for 7th Annual Anti-Submarine Warfare Cooperation Committee Meeting
BUSAN, Republic of Korea (Feb. 2, 2023) Vice Admiral Kim Jung-soo, Commander Republic of Korea Fleet leads Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, Commander, US 7th Fleet and Staff on a tour of the flight deck aboard the Republic of Korea Navy Dokdo-class Amphibious Assault Ship ROKS Marado (LPH-6112) in Busan, ROK. Vice Adm. Thomas is in the Republic of Korea to attend the 7th annual Anti-submarine Warfare Cooperation Committee meeting. (Courtesy photo by Commander, ROK Fleet Public Affairs)
Feb. 3, 2023 - BUSAN, Republic of Korea - Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, visited Commander, Republic of Korea Fleet (CRF) Base in Busan, Republic of Korea (ROK), Feb. 2, to attend the 7th Anti-Submarine Warfare...

B-1B Lancers return to Indo-Pacific for BTF missions
A U.S. Air Force B-1B Lancer assigned to the 34th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron, prepares to take off from Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota for a Bomber Task Force deployment, Jan. 31, 2023. BTF deployments are designed to showcase the Air Force’s ability to deter, deny and dominate any influence or aggression from adversaries or competitors. (U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Jake Jacobsen)
Feb. 3, 2023 - B-1B Lancers assigned to the 34th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron from Ellsworth Air Force Base, South Dakota landed at Andersen Air Force Base, Guam, Feb 1...

Unified Pacific Intel Wargame “Pacific Winds” offers key insights to deter potential adversaries and address global challenges
Australian Army Maj. Gen. Chris Smith, U.S. Army Pacific Deputy Commanding General Strategy and Plans (right), and New Zealand Army Brig. Gen. Rose King, New Zealand Army Deputy Chief of Staff (center), listen to a brief during the Unified Pacific Wargame Series intelligence-focused
Feb. 2, 2023 - U.S. Army Pacific Commanding General Gen. Charles A. Flynn hosted senior leaders from across the Department of Defense and several allied nations as part of the Unified Pacific Wargame Series intelligence-focused event...

Austin Visit to Philippine Base Highlights Benefits of U.S-Philippine Alliance
Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III meets with Philippine Chief of Defense, Gen. Andres Centino at Camp Navarro, Zamboanga, Philippines, Feb. 1, 2023. Austin is traveling to Asia to meet with senior government and military leaders in Korea and the Philippines to advance regional stability, further strengthen the defense partnerships and reaffirm the deep commitment of the United States to work in concert with allies and partners in support of the shared vision of preserving a free and open Indo-Pacific.
Feb. 2, 2023 - Secretary of Defense Lloyd J. Austin III visited Camp Navarro in Mindanao, Philippines, where U.S. and Philippine service members are working closely together to ensure long-term prosperity of the region...