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The Return of Kido Butai?

January 17th, 2014 - 8:19 am

BABY DOCK

The headline is hyperbole, of course — Japan isn’t about to concentrate six fleet carriers into a single formation and go galavanting around the Pacific and Indian oceans, blowing everybody up and stuff. But there is this:

Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force may begin flying unmanned surveillance drones from destroyers at sea as a possible prelude to procuring aircraft carriers, local media is reporting.

According to The Japan Times, “The Maritime Self-Defense Force is considering deploying fixed-wing unmanned reconnaissance aircraft that can take off from and land on destroyers.” If the plan is approved, the MSDFs intend to research these operations extensively.

I’m sure they do (cough, cough).

Fact is, Japan has already built one out of a planned three “destroyers” with suspiciously flat tops, as Longtime Sharp VodkaPundit Readers™ are of course aware.

What I find interesting is that Japan is taking this safe-sounding baby step of “only” using unmanned drone aircraft. As if Japan has the manpower to do much else. They’ll fly unmanned jets off of highly-automated ships — and they’ll probably be darned good at it, too.

China will protest of course, but they have nobody to blame but themselves.

All Comments   (6)
All Comments   (6)
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Through Deck Cruiser, Helicopter Destroyer, whatever it takes to get the funding through Parliament/Diet.

A highly automated Japanese ship operating the export version of the MQ-47C. Damn! I wouldn't be half surprised if the Izumo transformed into a giant robot and headed off to space. Robotech, ahoy!

Seriously though, the Izumos were designed w/ the F-35 in mind so they are more than capable of operating fixed wing aircraft. An MQ-47esq squadron or two would be no problem and make more sense considering Japanese experience and proficiency in automation coupled w/ limited population. The JMSDF is one of the premier navies in the world. They have the best ships and highly trained and experienced sailors. Any hostile ship going into their neighborhood is in for a very exciting and possibly short life. The only thing keeping the JMSDF from being a world beater is their small numbers and lack of combat experience.

The generations that remember getting their ass handed to them in '45 is disappearing. The current leadership and younger only know their neck of the woods is getting much more uncertain and probably more dangerous. Sure, they've got that part of the constitution to deal w/. But a couple field trips to DC would be enough for them to learn how to get around constitutional amendments w/o having to actually change or repeal them.
12 weeks ago
12 weeks ago Link To Comment
On the other hand, China will never forget WWII, especially Nanking. I'm pretty sure Japan knows this.
12 weeks ago
12 weeks ago Link To Comment
I have a love-hate thing for the Japanese. For now, "Go MSDF."
12 weeks ago
12 weeks ago Link To Comment
Not much hate for them, but I am curious what the Japanese captions say on the WWII timeline at the Nagasaki Peace Museum. They seem quite a bit longer than their English equivalents.

I am fairly certain that Japan is the only ally who could request that the US remove all troops from their soil and be declined.
12 weeks ago
12 weeks ago Link To Comment
I disagree. Should Japan request US leave, I'm certain King Barry would bail in a heartbeat. He has no desire to defend Japan from China; that is the perfect no-win scenario for his political career.

Nothing, but nothing matters more. L'etat c'est moi.
12 weeks ago
12 weeks ago Link To Comment
Unlike the Germans who have conniption fits when we threaten to leave.
12 weeks ago
12 weeks ago Link To Comment
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