The U.S. military and combat presence (U.S. Forces Japan, or USFJ) in Japan is a key asset towards maintaining security in the greater Asia-Pacific region, and both nations share a common stake in the security of the region. Okinawa, in particular, is perceived by both Japan and the U.S. as an area of strategic importance for USFJ and the region as a whole due to its proximity to the Taiwan Strait, mainland China, and the Korean Peninsula. This tactical position gives USFJ a wider purview in security operations over the Asia-Pacific region, and even allows access to the Indian Ocean and the Persian Gulf.
Ongoing incidents between Chinese maritime agencies and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Forces (JMSDF) have also stressed the importance of the USFJ. This has been more pronounced due to recent aggressive developments within the Asia-Pacific region, including nuclear tests conducted by North Korea, long-term territorial disputes over the Northern Territories with Russia, and an increasing number of scrambles with Chinese aircraft approaching Japanese airspace.
The USFJ homepage refers to the U.S.-Japan alliance as “essential to the free world posture in the Pacific… and to the preservation of world peace.”
Both governments hope that the United States and Japan can continue to prosper from their long-standing alliance, and will work together to maintain security and peace in the Pacific Region through future cooperation and joint operations between the USFJ and Japanese Self-Defense Force.
That’s where the Japan-US Military Program (JUMP) is key. Through social networks and events, JUMP builds relationships and provides opportunities for past and present USFJ service members to engage with each other. JUMP provides a powerful foundation for sustaining the solid alliance and relationship that exists between the U.S. and Japan.
Since JUMP’s launch in April 2015, the program already has connected hundreds of present and former service members with each other, as well as with their Japanese counterparts, so they can continue to engage with the relationships they built while serving.
Joining is simple! Simply sign up to be a member, which ensures you will receive invitations to attend all JUMP events and also receive our monthly newsletter.
By Zachary Shaykin and Christa Desrets
2020 The Japan U.S. Military Program (JUMP)
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