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The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force (海上自衛隊, Kaijō Jieitai), or JMSDF, is the naval branch of the Japan
Japan
Self-Defense Forces, tasked with the naval defense of Japan. It is the de facto navy of Japan
Japan
and was formed following the dissolution of the Imperial Japanese Navy
Navy
(IJN) after World War II.[4] The JMSDF has a fleet of 154 ships and 346 aircraft and consists of approximately 45,800 personnel. Its main tasks are to maintain control of the nation's sea lanes and to patrol territorial waters. It also participates in UN-led peacekeeping operations (PKOs) and Maritime Interdiction Operations (MIOs).

Contents

1 History

1.1 Origin 1.2 Imperial Japanese Navy 1.3 World War II 1.4 Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force 1.5 Post Cold War

2 Today

2.1 Capabilities and recent developments 2.2 International activities

2.2.1 Mission in the Indian Ocean 2.2.2 Mission in Somalia 2.2.3 Military exercises and exchanges

3 Equipment

3.1 Ships and submarines 3.2 Aircraft

4 Organization, formations and structure

4.1 District Forces 4.2 Fleet Air Force 4.3 Special
Special
Forces 4.4 Ranks

5 Culture and naming conventions 6 Recruitment and training 7 See also 8 References 9 Further reading 10 External links

History[edit]

Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force 日本国 海上自衛隊 (Kaijō Jieitai)

Components

Self Defense Fleet

Fleet Escort Force

Fleet Air Force

Fleet Submarine
Submarine
Force

District Force

JMSDF Reserve

Command

Maritime Staff Office

History

Naval history of Japan

Imperial Japanese Navy

History of Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force

Personnel

Rank insignia of the JMSDF

Ships

List of combat ships of JMSDF

Ships of the JMSDF

Origin[edit] Main article: Naval history of Japan

Naval battle of Dan-no-Ura in 1185

Japan
Japan
has a long history of naval interaction with the Asian continent, involving the transportation of troops, starting at least with the beginning of the Kofun period in the 3rd century. Following the attempts at Mongol invasions of Japan
Japan
by Kublai Khan
Kublai Khan
in 1274 and 1281, Japanese wakō became very active in plundering the coast of the Chinese Empire.

A 16th-century Japanese atakebune coastal warship.

Japan
Japan
undertook major naval building efforts in the 16th century, during the Warring States period, when feudal rulers vying for supremacy built vast coastal navies of several hundred ships. Around that time, Japan
Japan
may have developed one of the world's first ironclad warships, when Oda Nobunaga
Oda Nobunaga
(a Japanese daimyō) had six iron-covered Oatakebune made in 1576.[5][6] In 1588, Toyotomi Hideyoshi
Toyotomi Hideyoshi
issued a ban on Wakō piracy; the pirates then became vassals of Hideyoshi and comprised the naval force used in the Japanese invasion of Korea. Japan
Japan
built her first large ocean-going warships in the beginning of the 17th century, following contact with European countries during the Nanban trade period. In 1613, the daimyō of Sendai, in agreement with the Tokugawa shogunate, built Date Maru. This 500 ton galleon-type ship transported the Japanese embassy of Hasekura Tsunenaga
Hasekura Tsunenaga
to the Americas and Europe. From 1604 onwards, about 350 Red seal ships, usually armed and incorporating European technology, were also commissioned by the shogunate, mainly for Southeast Asian trade. Imperial Japanese Navy[edit] Main article: Imperial Japanese Navy

The British-built Ryūjō was the flagship of the Imperial Japanese Navy
Navy
until 1881.

From 1868, the restored Meiji Emperor continued with reforms to industrialize and militarize Japan
Japan
to prevent the United States and European powers from overwhelming it. On 17 January 1868, the Ministry of Military Affairs was established, with Iwakura Tomomi, Shimazu Tadayoshi and Prince Komatsu-no-miya Akihito as the First Secretaries. On 26 March 1868, the first Naval Review was held in Japan
Japan
(in Osaka Bay), with 6 ships from the private domainal navies of Saga, Chōshū, Satsuma, Kurume, Kumamoto and Hiroshima participating. The total tonnage of these ships was 2,252 tons, far smaller than the tonnage of the single foreign vessel (from the French Navy) that also participated. In July 1869, the Imperial Japanese Navy
Navy
was formally established, two months after the last military engagement of the Boshin War – the private navies of the Japanese nobles were abolished and their 11 ships were added to the 7 surviving vessels of the defunct Tokugawa bakufu navy, including Kankō Maru, Japan's first steam warship.[7] This formed the core of the new Imperial Japanese Navy. An 1872 edict officially separated the Japanese Navy
Navy
from the Japanese Army. Politicians like Enomoto Takeaki set out to use the Navy
Navy
to expand to the islands south of Japan
Japan
in similar fashion to the Army's northern and western expansion. The Navy
Navy
sought to upgrade its fleet to a blue water navy and used cruises to expand the Japanese consciousness on the southern islands. Enomoto's policies helped the Navy
Navy
expand and incorporate many different islands into the Japanese Empire, including Iwo Jima
Iwo Jima
in 1889. The navy continued to expand and incorporate political influence throughout the early twentieth century.[8] World War II[edit] Main article: Naval history of World War II Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force[edit]

Yamato was a potent symbol of the Imperial Japanese Navy

Following Japan's defeat in World War II, the Imperial Japanese Navy was dissolved by the Potsdam Declaration acceptance. Ships were disarmed, and some of them, such as the battleship Nagato, were taken by the Allied Powers as reparation. The remaining ships were used for repatriation of the Japanese soldiers from abroad and also for minesweeping in the area around Japan, initially under the control of the Second Bureau of the Demobilization Ministry.[9] The minesweeping fleet was eventually transferred to the newly formed Maritime Safety Agency, which helped maintain the resources and expertise of the navy. Japan's 1947 Constitution was drawn up after the conclusion of the war, Article 9 specifying that "The Japanese people forever renounce war as a sovereign right of the nation and the threat or use of force as a means of settling international disputes." The prevalent view in Japan
Japan
is that this article allows for military forces to be kept for the purposes of self-defense. Due to Cold War
Cold War
pressures, the United States was also happy for Japan
Japan
to provide part of its own defense, rather than have it fully rely on American forces. In 1952, the Coastal Safety Force was formed within the Maritime Safety Agency, incorporating the minesweeping fleet and other military vessels, mainly destroyers, given by the United States. In 1954, the Coastal Safety Force was separated, and the JMSDF was formally created as the naval branch of the Japanese Self-Defense Force
Japanese Self-Defense Force
(JSDF), following the passage of the 1954 Self-Defense Forces Law. The first ships in the JMSDF were former U.S. Navy
Navy
destroyers, transferred to Japanese control in 1954. In 1956, the JMSDF received its first domestically produced destroyer since World War II, Harukaze. Due to the Cold War
Cold War
threat posed by the Soviet Navy's sizable and powerful submarine fleet, the JMSDF was primarily tasked with an anti-submarine role. Post Cold War[edit] Following the end of the Cold War, the role of the JMSDF has vastly changed. In 1991, after much international pressure, the JMSDF dispatched 4 minesweepers, a fleet oiler (JDS Tokiwa) and a minesweeping tender (JDS Hayasse) to the Persian Gulf in the aftermath of the Gulf War, under the name of Operation Gulf Dawn, to clear mines sown by Saddam Hussein's defending forces;[10] and starting with a mission to Cambodia in 1993 when JSDF personnel were supported by JDS Towada,[10] it has been active in a number of UN-led peace keeping operations throughout Asia. In 1993, it commissioned its first Aegis-equipped destroyer, Kongō. It has also been active in joint naval exercises with other countries, such as the United States. The JMSDF has dispatched a number of its destroyers on a rotating schedule to the Indian Ocean in an escort role for allied vessels as part of the UN-led Operation Enduring Freedom. With an increase in tensions with North Korea
North Korea
following the 1993 test of the Nodong-1
Nodong-1
missile and the 1998 test of the Taepodong-1 missile over northern Japan, the JMSDF has stepped up its role in air defense. A ship-based anti-ballistic missile system was successfully test-fired on 18 December 2007 and has been installed on Japan's Aegis-equipped destroyers. The JMSDF, along with the Japan
Japan
Coast Guard, has also been active in preventing North Korean infiltrators from reaching Japan
Japan
and in December 2001, engaged and sank a North Korean spy ship. Today[edit] Capabilities and recent developments[edit]

A RIM-161 Standard Missile 3
RIM-161 Standard Missile 3
launched from JDS Kongō, an Aegis destroyer.

The JMSDF has an official strength of 50,000 personnel, but presently numbers around 50,800 active personnel. As a result of continuing effective defense investment due to Japan's economic development and an end to the Cold War, The JMSDF is currently the world's fifth largest naval power. Japan
Japan
has the seventh largest Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) in the world,[11] and the JMSDF is responsible for protecting this large area. As an island nation, dependent on maritime trade for the majority of its resources, including food and raw materials, maritime operations are a very important aspect of Japanese defense policy. The JMSDF is known in particular for its anti-submarine warfare and minesweeping capabilities. Defense planners believe the most effective approach to combating hostile submarines entails mobilizing all available weapons, including surface combatants, submarines, patrol planes, and helicopters. Historically the Japan
Japan
Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) has been relied on to provide air cover at sea, a role that is subordinate to the JASDF's primary mission of air defense of the home islands. Extended patrols over sea lanes are beyond the JASDF's current capabilities. The Japanese fleet's capacity to provide ship-based antiaircraft warfare protection is limited by the absence of aircraft carriers, though its destroyers and frigates equipped with the Aegis combat system provide a formidable capability in antiaircraft and antimissile warfare. These capabilities are force multipliers, allowing force projection of Japan's sizable destroyer and frigate force far from home waters, and acquiring them is contentious considering Japan's "passive" defense policy.

JS Izumo, an Izumo-class helicopter destroyer

In August 2003, a new "helicopter carrier" class was ordered, the Hyūga-class helicopter destroyer. The size and features of the ship, including a full-length flight deck, will result in it being classified as either an amphibious assault ship or a helicopter carrier by Lloyd's Register
Lloyd's Register
— similar to the United Kingdom's HMS Ocean. It has been widely argued about whether an aircraft carrier of any kind would be technically prohibited by Article 9 of the Japanese Constitution, since aircraft carriers are generally considered offensive weapons. In a Japanese Diet budget session in April 1988, the chief of the Japanese Defense Agency, Tsutomu Kawara, said, "The Self-Defense Forces are not allowed to possess ICBMs (intercontinental ballistic missiles), strategic bombers, or attack aircraft carriers."[12] Historically, up through about 1975 in the U.S. Navy, the large-scale carriers had been classified as "attack aircraft carriers" and the smaller carriers as "anti-submarine aircraft carriers." Since helicopter carriers have very little built-in attack capability and they primarily fulfill roles such as defensive anti-submarine warfare, the Japanese government continues to argue that the prohibition does not extend to the new helicopter carriers. In November 2009, the JMSDF announced plans for an even larger "helicopter carrier", the Izumo-class helicopter destroyer. The first one of these ships was laid down in 2012[13][14][15] and was launched on 6 August 2013.[16] The submarine fleet of the JMSDF consists of some of the most technologically advanced diesel-electric submarines in the world. This is due to careful defense planning in which the submarines are routinely retired from service ahead of schedule and replaced by more advanced models.[17] In 2010 it was announced that the Japanese submarine fleet would be increased in size for the first time in 36 years.[18] After a meeting between the Japanese Foreign Minister and U.S. Ambassador to Japan
Japan
on 4 March 2014, the Japanese Defense Ministry and U.S. Department of Defense announced they would hold studies for the joint development of the littoral vessel under the bilateral Mutual Defense Assistance agreement. The vessel is planned to be a high-speed trimaran designed for operations in shallow coastal waters capable of carrying helicopters, possibly a lighter variant of the American 3,000 tonne (3,300 short ton) Littoral Combat Ship. The study is in response to the growth of the Chinese People's Liberation Army
People's Liberation Army
Navy
Navy
and budgetary issues with the U.S. military that may affect their ability to operate in the Pacific. The J-LCS would be used to intervene during Chinese ship incursions near the Senkaku Islands
Senkaku Islands
and other contested areas in the East China Sea, and possibly counter similar Chinese vessels like the Type 056 corvette
Type 056 corvette
and Type 022 missile boat. A 1,000 tonnes (980 long tons; 1,100 short tons) J-LCS with an enlarged hull could operate the SH-60K anti-submarine helicopter or the MCH-101 airborne mine countermeasures (AMCM) helicopter.[19] International activities[edit]

Arabian Sea on November 22, 2006 - The Japanese fast combat support ship JDS Mashu (left) conducts a replenishment at sea (RAS) with the guided-missile cruiser USS Anzio

Mission in the Indian Ocean[edit] Destroyers and combat support ships of Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force were dispatched to the Indian Ocean from 2001 to 2008 to participate in OEF-MIO (Operation Enduring Freedom-Maritime Interdiction Operation).[20] Their mission is to prevent the marine transportation of illegal weapons and ammunition, and the drugs which fund terrorist activity. Since 2004, the JMSDF has provided ships of foreign forces with fuel for their ships and ship-based helicopters, as well as fresh water. This was the third time Japanese military vessels had been dispatched overseas since World War II, following the deployments of mine-sweeping units during the Korean War and the Persian Gulf War. The law enabling the mission expired on 2 November 2007, and the operation was temporarily canceled due to a veto of a new bill authorizing the mission by the opposition-controlled upper chamber of the Japanese Diet. In January 2010, the defense minister ordered the JMSDF to return from the Indian Ocean, fulfilling a government pledge to end the eight-year refueling mission. Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama
Yukio Hatoyama
refused to renew the law authorizing the mission, ignoring requests from the American government for continuation. Both the Western alliance country typified by the Royal Australian Navy
Navy
and the Royal Danish Navy, doing friendship activities in the Indian Ocean .[21] Mission in Somalia[edit] Further information: Piracy in Somalia In May 2010, Japan
Japan
announced its intention to build a permanent naval base in Djibouti, from which it will conduct operations to protect merchant shipping from Somali pirates.[22] Military exercises and exchanges[edit]

USS George Washington participating in a photo exercise with other U.S. Navy
Navy
and Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force ships at the culmination of ANNUALEX 2008.

The JMSDF and the U.S. Navy
Navy
frequently carry out joint exercises and "U.S. Navy
Navy
officials have claimed that they have a closer daily relationship with the JMSDF than any other navy in the world".[23] The JMSDF participates in RIMPAC, the annual multi-national military exercise near Hawaii that has been hosted by the U.S. Navy
Navy
since 1980. The JMSDF dispatched a ship to the Russian Vladivostok
Vladivostok
harbor in July 1996 to participate in the Russian Navy's 300th anniversary naval review. Vladimir Vinogradov came by ship to the Tokyo
Tokyo
harbor in June 1997. The JMSDF has also conducted joint naval exercises with the Indian Navy.

RIMPAC: Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force participated in RIMPAC
RIMPAC
after 1980. Pacific Shield (PSI): The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force has participated in Pacific Shield after 2004; and in 2007, the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force hosted the exercise. Pacific Reach: The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force has participated in the bi-annual submarine rescue exercise since 2000. In 2002, the Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force hosted the exercise. Navy
Navy
to Navy
Navy
Talks: The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force holds regular naval conferences with its counterparts of Indonesia, Malaysia, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America. AEGIS Ballistic Missile Defense FTM: The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force has participated in the FTM after FTM-10. The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force carried out JFTM-1 in December 2007. The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force participates in the United States Navy's Personnel Exchange Program (PEP) in which officers and enlisted personnel from each country serve fully integrated in the other country's navy for two years.

Equipment[edit] Ships and submarines[edit] See also: List of active Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force ships The ship prefix JDS (Japanese Defense Ship) was used until 2008, at which time JMSDF ships started using the prefix JS (Japanese Ship) to reflect the upgrade of the Japanese Defense Agency
Japanese Defense Agency
to the Ministry of Defense. As of 2014, the JMSDF operates a total of 124 ships (excluding minor auxiliary vessels), including; four helicopter carriers (called helicopter destroyers), 26 destroyers, 10 small destroyers (or frigates), six destroyer escorts (or corvettes), 18 attack submarines, 29 mine countermeasure vessels, six patrol vessels, three landing ship tanks, eight training vessels and a fleet of various auxiliary ships.[24] The fleet has a total displacement of approximately 450,000 tonnes (including auxiliary vessels). Aircraft[edit] See also: Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force aviation The Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force aviation maintains a large naval air force, including 201 fixed-wing aircraft and 145 helicopters. Most of these aircraft are used in anti-submarine warfare operations.

Aircraft Role Versions Quantity[3] Note

Fixed-wing aircraft

Lockheed P-3 Orion Maritime patrol

ELINT

Optical reconnaissance

Equipment test

Electronic warfare trainer P-3C

EP-3C

OP-3C

UP-3C

UP-3D 68

4

5

1

3

Kawasaki P-1 Maritime patrol P-1 12 Planned to replace the Lockheed P-3C
P-3C
Orion. 80 more on order.

KC-130
KC-130
Hercules Utility transport C-130R 6 Re entered into service since 2013.[25]

Learjet 35 Utility aircraft U-36A 4

Beechcraft King Air Utility aircraft/Liaison

Trainer aircraft LC-90

TC-90 5

28

Fuji T-5 Trainer aircraft T-5 36

ShinMaywa US-1 Search and rescue US-1A 1

ShinMaywa US-2 Search and rescue US-2 5 Replacing the older US-1A.

Helicopters

Mitsubishi SH-60 Maritime helicopter UH-60J

SH-60J

SH-60K 15

42

53 Search and rescue.

Anti-submarine warfare.

Anti-submarine warfare.

AgustaWestland AW101 Minesweeping helicopter

Utility helicopter MCH-101

CH-101 10

2

For icebreaker Shirase.

Eurocopter EC 135 Trainer helicopter TH-135 15

USS John C. Stennis、JDS Ise

Kawasaki P-1
Kawasaki P-1
with its US equivalent, the Boeing P-8 Poseidon

Mitsubishi SH-60
Mitsubishi SH-60
from JDS Haruna lands onboard USS Russell.

US MV-22B with land aboard JDS Shimokita

Organization, formations and structure[edit]

JMSDF Fleet Headquarters. Yokosuka.

Tokiwa (left) and Onami (right) at the Port of Shimizu

Kirishima returning from RIMPAC
RIMPAC
'98

SH-60J in Okadama Air Base

Kure District Headquarters

Educational reference pavilion at the Officer Candidate School

The JMSDF is commanded by the Chief of the Maritime Staff. Its structure consists of the Maritime Staff Office, the Self Defense Fleet, five regional district commands, the air-training squadron and various support units, such as hospitals and schools. The Maritime Staff Office, located in Tokyo, serves the Chief of Staff in commanding and supervising the force. The Self-Defense Fleet, headquartered at Yokosuka, consists of the JMSDF's military shipping. It is composed of Fleet Escort Force (based in Yokosuka, Sasebo, Maizuru
Maizuru
and Kure), the Fleet Air Force headquartered at Atsugi, Fleet Submarine
Submarine
Force based at Yokosuka
Yokosuka
and Kure, Mine Warfare Force based at Yokosuka
Yokosuka
and the Fleet Training Command at Yokosuka.[26] March 6, 2018 the first time in Japan
Japan
a woman as commander of a unit that includes the country's biggest warship.Ryoko Azuma has become the first female squadron commander in the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force (MSDF). Her unit includes the flagship Izumo, the largest warship in the Japanese navy. She will command four warships making up a division with a total of 1,000 crew members. [3] Each Escort Flotilla is formed as an 8–8 fleet of 8 destroyers and 8 on-board helicopters, a modification of the old Japanese Navy
Navy
fleet layout of 8 battleships and 8 cruisers. Each force is composed of one helicopter destroyer (DDH) acting as a command ship, two guided-missile destroyers (DDG) and 5 standard or ASW destroyers (DD). The JMSDF is planning to reorganize the respective Escort Flotillas into a DDH group and DDG group, enabling faster overseas deployments.

Prime Minister of Japan

Minister of Defense

JMSDF Chief of Staff / Maritime Staff Office

Self Defense Fleet

Fleet Escort Force

Escort Flotilla 1 (Yokosuka)

Escort Squadron 1 (DDG,DDH,DDx2) Escort Squadron 5 (DDG,DDx3)

Escort Flotilla 2 (Sasebo)

Escort Squadron 2 (DDG,DDH,DDx2) Escort Squadron 6 (DDG,DDx3)

Escort Flotilla 3 (Maizuru)

Escort Squadron 3 (DDG,DDH,DDx2) Escort Squadron 7 (DDG,DDx3)

Escort Flotilla 4 (Kure)

Escort Squadron 4 (DDG,DDH,DDx2) Escort Squadron 8 (DDG,DDx3)

Fleet Training Command 1st Replenishment Squadron

Fleet Air Force

Fleet Air Wing 1 ( P-3C
P-3C
UH-60J) Fleet Air Wing 2 ( P-3C
P-3C
UH-60J) Fleet Air Wing 4 ( P-3C
P-3C
UH-60J) Fleet Air Wing 5 ( P-3C
P-3C
UH-60J) Fleet Air Wing 21 (SH-60J/K) Fleet Air Wing 22 (SH-60J) Fleet Air Wing 31 (US-1A US-2 EP-3 O P-3C
P-3C
UP-3D LC-90 U-36A) Fleet Squadron 51 (P-1, P-3C
P-3C
UP-3C/D OP-3 SH-60J/K OH-6DA) Fleet Squadron 61 (C-130R LC-90) Mine Countermeasures Helicopter
Helicopter
Squadron 111 (MCH-101)

Fleet Submarine
Submarine
Force

Submarine
Submarine
Flotilla 1

Submarine
Submarine
Squadron 1 Submarine
Submarine
Squadron 3 Submarine
Submarine
Squadron 5

Submarine
Submarine
Flotilla 2

Submarine
Submarine
Squadron 2 Submarine
Submarine
Squadron 4

Submarine
Submarine
Training Command

Mine Warfare Force

Minesweeper
Minesweeper
Division 1 Minesweeper
Minesweeper
Division 2 Minesweeper
Minesweeper
Division 3 Minesweeper
Minesweeper
Division 101 Landing Ship Division 1 Mine Warfare Support Center

Mine Warfare Support Detachment Kure

Fleet Research & Development Command Fleet Intelligence Command Oceanographic and ASW Support Command

Air Training Command

Shimofusa Air Training Group ( P-3C
P-3C
YS-11TA UH-60J) Tokushima Air Training Group (202nd Naval Air Training Squadron) (TC-90) (UC-90) (UH-60J) Ozuki Air Training Group (T-5 UH-60J)

Maritime Material Command

Ship Supply Depot Air Supply Depot

Training Squadron Communication Command Criminal Investigation Command Service Activity Tokyo Printing Supply Unit JMSDF Staff College Maritime Officer Candidate School 1st Service School 2nd Service School 3rd Service School 4th Service School Yokosuka
Yokosuka
District Kure District Sasebo District Maizuru
Maizuru
District Ominato
Ominato
District

JMSDF District Forces

District Forces[edit] Five district units act in concert with the fleet to guard the waters of their jurisdictions and provide shore-based support. Each district is home to a major JMSDF base and its supporting perssonel and staff. Furthermore, each district is home to one or two regional escort squadrons, composed of two to three destroyers or destroyer escorts (DE). The destroyers tend to be of older classes, mainly former escort force ships. The destroyer escorts, on the other hand, tend to be purpose built vessels. Each district also has a number of minesweeping ships. Fleet Air Force[edit] The Fleet Air Force is tasked with patrol, ASW and rescue tasks. It is composed primarily of 7 aviation groups. Prominent bases are maintained at Kanoya, Hachinohe, Atsugi, Naha, Tateyama, Oomura
Oomura
and Iwakuni. The Fleet Air Force is built up mainly with patrol aircraft such as the Lockheed P-3 Orion, rescue aircraft such as the US-1A and helicopters such as the SH-60J. In the JMSDF, helicopters deployed to each escort force are actually members of Fleet Air Force squadrons based on land. Special
Special
Forces[edit] Special
Special
Forces units consist of the following:

SBU ( Special
Special
Boarding Unit) MIT (Maritime Interception Team)

Ranks[edit] The following details the officer ranks of the JMSDF, showing the Japanese rank, the English translation and the NATO equivalent.

Commissioned Officers

Admiral

Captain

Japanese Rank (in Japanese) Japanese Rank (Translated) Japanese Rank (in English) NATO Code

統合幕僚長および海上幕僚長たる海将 (Tōgō-bakuryōchō(Tōbakuchō) oyobi Kaijō-bakuryōchō(Kaibakuchō) taru Kaishō) Admiral
Admiral
serve as Chief of Staff of Joint Staff Office and Admiral
Admiral
serve as Chief of Staff JMSDF Full Admiral OF-9

海将 (Kaishō) Admiral Vice Admiral OF-8

海将補 (Kaishō-ho) Lesser Admiral Rear Admiral OF-7

1等海佐 (Ittō Kaisa) Captain 1st Rank Captain OF-5

2等海佐 (Nitō Kaisa) Captain 2nd Rank Commander OF-4

3等海佐 (Santō Kaisa) Captain 3rd Rank Lieutenant
Lieutenant
Commander OF-3

1等海尉 (Ittō Kaii) Lieutenant
Lieutenant
1st Rank Lieutenant OF-2

2等海尉 (Nitō Kaii)] Lieutenant
Lieutenant
2nd Rank Lieutenant
Lieutenant
Junior Grade OF-1

3等海尉 (Santō Kaii) Lieutenant
Lieutenant
3rd Rank Ensign OF-1

Warrant officers

准海尉 (Jun Kaii) Associate Lieutenant Warrant Officer OR-9

Non-Commissioned Officers

海曹長 (Kaisō-chō) Chief Petty Officer Chief Petty Officer OR-8

1等海曹 (Ittō Kaisō) Petty Officer 1st Class Petty Officer 1st Class OR-7

2等海曹 (Nitō Kaisō) Petty Officer 2nd Class Petty Officer 2nd Class OR-6

3等海曹 (Santō Kaisō) Petty Officer 3rd Class Petty Officer 3rd Class OR-5

Enlisted

海士長 (Kaishi-chō) Chief Seaman Leading Seaman OR-3

1等海士 (Ittō Kaishi) Seaman
Seaman
1st Class Seaman OR-2

2等海士 (Nitō Kaishi) Seaman
Seaman
2nd Class Seaman
Seaman
Apprentice OR-1

自衛官候補生(Jieikan Kōhosei) Cadet Seaman Self Defence Official Cadet OR-D

Ranks are listed with the lower rank at right.

Officer (幹部)

Insignia Full Admiral 統合幕僚長 および 海上幕僚長 たる海将 Vice Admiral 海将 Rear Admiral 海将補 Captain 1等海佐 Commander 2等海佐 Lieutenant Commander 3等海佐 Lieutenant 1等海尉 Lieutenant Junior Grade 2等海尉 Ensign 3等海尉

Type A (甲階級章)

Type B (乙階級章)

Type C (丙階級章)

Miniature (略章)

Enlisted (准尉および曹士)

Insignia Warrant Officer 准海尉 Chief Petty Officer 海曹長 Petty Officer 1st Class 1等海曹 Petty Officer 2nd Class 2等海曹 Petty Officer 3rd Class 3等海曹 Leading Seaman 海士長 Seaman 1等海士 Seaman Apprentice 2等海士 Self Defence official cadet 自衛官候補生

Type A (甲階級章)

Type B (乙階級章)

Type C (丙階級章)

No insignia

Miniature (略章)

No insignia

Culture and naming conventions[edit] Main article: Gosei (meditation) Although Japan's Ground Self-Defense Force has almost dropped traditions associated with the Imperial Japanese Army save for the march music tradition (Review March is the official march of the IJA and today's JGSDF), the JMSDF has maintained these historic links with the Imperial Japanese Navy
Navy
(IJN). Today's JMSDF continues to use the same martial songs, naval flags, signs, and technical terms as the IJN. For example, the official flag of the JMSDF is the same as that used by the IJN. Also, the JMSDF tradition of eating Japanese curry every Friday lunch originated with the IJN. The JMSDF still uses the Warship March, the old service march of the IJN, as its official service march. It also maintains the IJN bugle calls tradition, as every ship and shore establishment command maintain a platoon or squad of bugle players. The ship prefix JDS (Japanese Defense Ship) was used until 2008, at which time JMSDF ships started using the prefix JS (Japanese Ship) to reflect the upgrade of the Japanese Defense Agency
Japanese Defense Agency
to the Ministry of Defense. Ships of the JMSDF, known as Japan
Japan
Ships (自衛艦; Ji'ei-Kan), are classified according to the following criteria:

The classification and the naming convention of Japanese ships

Class Type Symbol Building # # Naming

Major class Minor class

Combatant Ship Combatant Ship Destroyer DD 1601- 101- Names of natural phenomena in the heavens or the atmosphere, mountains, rivers or regions

Destroyer
Destroyer
escort DE 1201- 201-

Submarine SS 8001- 501- Names of natural phenomena in the ocean or maritime animals

Mine Warfare Ship Minesweeper
Minesweeper
Ocean MSO 201- 301- Names of islands, straits, channels or one that added a number to the type

Minesweeper
Minesweeper
Coast MSC 301- 601-

Minesweeping Controller MCL - 721-

Minesweeper
Minesweeper
Tender MST 462- 461-

Patrol Combatant Craft Patrol Guided Missile Boat PG 821- 821- Names of birds, grass or one that added a number to the type

Patrol Boat PB 921- 901-

Amphibious Ship Landing Ship, Tank LST 4101- 4001- Names of peninsulas, capes or one that added a number to the type

Landing Ship Utility LSU 4171- 4171-

Landing Craft Utility LCU 2001– 2001–

Landing Craft Air Cushioned LCAC - 2001–

Auxiliary Ship Auxiliary Ship Training Ship TV 3501- 3501- Names of places of natural beauty and historic interest or one that added a number to the type or the model

Training Submarine TSS - -

Training Support Ship ATS 4201- 4201-

Multipurpose Support Ship AMS - -

Oceanographic Research Ship AGS 5101- 5101-

Ocean Surveillance Ship AOS 5201- 5201-

Ice breaker AGB 5001- 5001-

Cable Repairing Ship ARC 1001- 481-

Submarine
Submarine
Rescue Ship ASR 1101- 401-

Submarine
Submarine
Rescue Tender AS 1111- 405-

Experimental Ship ASE 6101- 6101-

Fast Combat Support Ship AOE 4011- 421-

Service Utility Ship ASU - 7001-

Service Utility Craft ASU 81- 61-

Service Yacht ASY 91- 91-

Recruitment and training[edit]

Members of the crew of JDS Kongō

JMSDF recruits receive three months of basic training followed by courses in patrol, gunnery, mine sweeping, convoy operations and maritime transportation. Flight students, all upper-secondary school graduates, enter a two-year course. Officer candidate schools offer six-month courses to qualified enlisted personnel and those who have completed flight school.

Officer Candidate School

Graduates of four-year universities, the four-year National Defense Academy, and particularly outstanding enlisted personnel undergo a one-year officer course at the Officer Candidate School at Etajima (site of the former Imperial Naval Academy). The JMSDF also operates a staff college in Tokyo
Tokyo
for senior officers. The large volume of coastal commercial fishing and maritime traffic around Japan
Japan
limits in-service sea training, especially in the relatively shallow waters required for mine laying, mine sweeping and submarine rescue practice. Training days are scheduled around slack fishing seasons in winter and summer—providing about ten days during the year. The JMSDF maintains two oceangoing training ships and conducted annual long-distance on-the-job training for graduates of the one-year officer candidate school.[26] See also[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force.

Imperial Japanese Navy Japanese ship naming conventions Military ranks and insignia of the Japan
Japan
Self-Defense Forces Ships transferred from the United States Navy
Navy
to the Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force [Category] Shipping Control Authority for the Japanese Merchant Marine
Shipping Control Authority for the Japanese Merchant Marine
– Post-WWII Occupation era organisation Naval Computer and Telecommunications Station Yokosuka, Japan
Japan
– US Navy
Navy
facility key to MSDF/USN operational co-ordination. Kaiwo Maru (1989)

References[edit]

^ "C㎩qFM[Fʐ^M[Fq́i͒j". Retrieved 25 December 2014.  ^ "海上自衛隊:ギャラリー:潜水艦(艦艇)". Retrieved 25 December 2014.  ^ a b cite weburl=https://d1fmezig7cekam.cloudfront.net/VPP/Global/Flight/Airline%20Business/AB%20home/Edit/WorldAirForces2015.pdf%7Ctitle=Flightglobal - World Air Forces 2015] (PDF), [[Flightglobal.com]publisher= ^ "Japan> National Security> Self-Defense Forces> Early Development". Library of Congress Country Studies. Retrieved 9 May 2015.  ^ Thach, Marcel. "The Madness of Toyotomi Hideyoshi". The Samurai Archives. Retrieved 19 July 2008.  ^ Samson, George (1961). A History of Japan, 1334–1615. Stanford University Press. p. 309. ISBN 0-8047-0525-9.  ^ Schauffelen, Otmar (2005). Chapman Great Sailing Ships of the World. Hearst. p. 186. ISBN 1-58816-384-9.  ^ Schencker, J. Charles (October 1999). "The Imperial Japanese Navy and the Constructed Consciousness of a South Seas Destiny, 1872–1921". Modern Asian Studies. 33 (4): 769–96. doi:10.1017/s0026749x99003649.  ^ Graham, Euan (2006). Japan's Sea Lane Security, 1940–2004: A Matter Of Life And Death?. Nissan Institute/Routledge Japanese Studies Series. Routledge. p. 307. ISBN 0-41535-640-7.  ^ a b Woolley, Peter J. (1996). "The Kata of Japan's Naval Forces," Naval War College Review, XLIX, 2: 59–69. ^ "海洋白書 2004". Nippon Foundation. Retrieved 11 February 2008.  ^ "Japanese Aircraft Carrier". Global Security. 3 August 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2012.  ^ Demetriou, Danielle (23 November 2009). " Japan
Japan
to build fleet's biggest helicopter destroyer to fend off China". The Daily Telegraph. London. Retrieved 5 May 2010.  ^ [1] Archived June 17, 2010, at the Wayback Machine. ^ [2] Archived June 20, 2012, at the Wayback Machine. ^ " Japan
Japan
unveils new carrier-like warship, largest in navy since WWII". Fox News. Associated Press. 6 August 2013. Retrieved 9 May 2015.  ^ Yoshihara, Toshi; Holmes, James R. "The Next Arms Race - APAC 2020, the decade ahead". The Diplomat. Archived from the original on 18 August 2011. Retrieved 25 December 2014.  ^ " Japan
Japan
to Beef Up Submarines to Counter Chinese Power". The Chosun Ilbo (English Edition). 26 July 2010. Retrieved 25 December 2014.  ^ "US, Japan
Japan
to Jointly Develop Littoral Combat Ship". The Diplomat. 7 March 2014. Retrieved 9 May 2015.  ^ "About activity based on Antiterrorism Law". Japan
Japan
Ministry of Defense. Archived from the original on 28 January 2008. Retrieved 11 February 2008.  ^ Fackler, Martin (15 January 2010). "Japan: Navy
Navy
Ends Mission in Support of Afghan War". New York Times. Retrieved 9 May 2015.  ^ " Japan
Japan
to build navy base in Gulf of Aden". UPI. 11 May 2010. Retrieved 25 December 2014.  ^ CRS RL33740 The Changing U.S.- Japan
Japan
Alliance: Implications for U.S. Interests Archived June 9, 2011, at the Wayback Machine. ^ Pike, John. "Japanese Warships - Equipment Holdings". Global Security. Retrieved 25 December 2014.  ^ "Sale Gives New Life to Excess C-130s". Defense-Aerospace.com. 7 March 2013. Retrieved 9 May 2015.  ^ a b Dolan, Ronald; Robert Worden (1992). "8". Japan : A Country Study. Federal Research Division, Library of Congress. ISBN 0-8444-0731-3.  See section 2: "The Self Defense Forces"

Further reading[edit]

Auer, James. The Postwar Rearmament of Japanese Maritime Forces, 1945–1971. New York: Praeger, 1973. ISBN 0-275-28633-9 Auer, James. "Japan's Changing Defense Policy," The New Pacific Security Environment. Ralph A. Cossa, ed. Wash. D.C.: National Defense University, 1993. Jane's Intelligence Review, February 1992. Jane's Defence Weekly
Jane's Defence Weekly
17 August 1991 Midford, Paul. "Japan’s Response to Terror: Dispatching the SDF to the Arabian Sea," Asian Survey, 43:2 (March/April 2003). Rubinstein, G.A. and J. O'Connell. "Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Forces," Naval Forces. 11: 2 (1990). Sekino, Hideo. " Japan
Japan
and Her Maritime Defense," U.S. Naval Institute Proceedings, (May 1971). Sekino, Hideo. "A Diagnosis of our Maritime Self-Defense Force," Sekai no Kansen (Ships of the World), November 1970. Takei, Tomohisa," Japan
Japan
Maritime Self Defense Force in the New Maritime Era," Hatou, 34: 4(November 2008). Tsukigi, Shinji, "External and Internal Factors Shaping The Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF)." Monterey, Cal.: Naval Postgraduate School, June 1993. Master’s thesis. Wile, Ted Shannon. Sealane Defense: An Emerging Role for the JMSDF?. Master's Thesis, Naval Postgraduate School
Naval Postgraduate School
(1981). Woolley, Peter J (1996). "Japan's 1991 Minesweeping Decision: An Organizational Response". Asian Survey. 36 (8): 804–817. doi:10.1525/as.1996.36.8.01p0159v.  Woolley, Peter J. Japan’s Navy: Politics and Paradox 1971–2000. London: Lynne-Reinner: 2000. ISBN 1-55587-819-9 Yamaguchi, Jiro. "The Gulf War
Gulf War
and the Transformation of Japanese Constitutional Politics," Journal of Japanese Studies, Vol. 18 (Winter 1992). Young, P. Lewis. "The Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Forces: Major Surface Combatants Destroyers and Frigates," Asian Defense Journal (1985).

External links[edit]

JMSDF's channel on YouTube Yokosuka
Yokosuka
Naval Base Community Website JMSDF News Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force News Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force (English) JMSDF overview at GlobalSecurity Introduction of a paper "JMSDF in the New Maritime Era"

v t e

Japan
Japan
Self-Defense Forces

   

Japan
Japan
Ground Self-Defense Force (Army)

Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force (Navy)

Japan
Japan
Air Self-Defense Force (Air Force)

Combatant ship classes of the Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force

Helicopter
Helicopter
Destroyer
Destroyer
(DDH)

Haruna Shirane Hyūga Izumo

Guided Missile Destroyer
Destroyer
(DDG)

Amatsukaze (DDG-163) Tachikaze Hatakaze Kongō Atago

Destroyer
Destroyer
(DD)

Asakaze (DD-181) / Hatakaze (DD-182) (Gleaves) Ariake (DD-183) / Yūgure (DD-184) (Fletcher) Harukaze Akizuki (1959) Hatsuyuki Asagiri Murasame (1994) Takanami Akizuki (2010) Asahi

All Purpose Destroyer
Destroyer
(DDA)

Murasame (1958) Takatsuki

Anti Submarine
Submarine
Destroyer
Destroyer
(DDK)

Ayanami Yamagumo Minegumo

Destroyer
Destroyer
Escort (DE)

Wakaba (DE-261) (Matsu) Asahi (DE-262) / Hatsuhi (DE-263) (Cannon) Akebono (DE-201) Ikazuchi Isuzu Chikugo Ishikari (DE-226) Yūbari Abukuma

Patrol Frigate
Frigate
(PF)

Kusu (PF–281) (Tacoma)

Submarine
Submarine
(SS)

Kuroshio (SS-501) Oyashio (SS-511) Hayashio Natsushio Ōshio (SS-561) Asashio Uzushio Yūshio Harushio Oyashio Sōryū

Ocean Minehunters/Minesweepers (MHS)

Yaeyama

Coastal Minehunters/Minesweepers (MHC)

Yashiro (MSC-601) Atada Kasado Takami Hatsushima Awashima

Amphibious Warfare

Ōsumi (LST-4001) / Shimokita (LST-4002) / Shiretoko (LST-4003) (LST-542) Atsumi Miura Ōsumi

List of combatant ship classes of the Japan
Japan
Maritime Self-Defense Force List of ships of the Japanese Navy

v t e

Militaries of Asia

Sovereign states

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States with limited recognition

Abkhazia Artsakh Northern Cyprus Palestine South Ossetia Republic of China (Taiwan)

Dependencies and other territories

British Indian Ocean Territory Christmas Island Cocos (Keeling) Islands Hong Kong Macau

Coordinates: 35°18′40″N 139°38′10″E / 35.31111°N 139.63611°E / 3

.