Japan Press Weekly
[Advanced search]
Past issues
Special issues
Fact Box
Feature Articles
Mail to editor
Mail magazine
HOME  > Past issues  > 2021 September 22 - 28  > Ground SDF plans to use Kyoto St. for military cargo shipment
> List of Past issues
Bookmark and Share
2021 September 22 - 28 [SDF]

Ground SDF plans to use Kyoto St. for military cargo shipment

September 24 & 27, 2021
Akahata on September 27 reported that in a military exercise which will last for two months starting in mid-September, the Ground Self-Defense Force plans to transport troops and military supplies on a large-scale with the use of the civil transport systems, including ferries, highways, and railways.

This was revealed in a document submitted by the Defense Ministry to Japanese Communist Party member of the House of Representatives Shiokawa Tetsuya.

According to the document, the GSDF drills will involve five training courses. In the logistics and medical training course, military supplies will be transported from SDF bases nationwide to Japan’s southern region of Kyushu with the use of commercial ships and railroads. In the Kyushu region, along with SDF trucks, commercial vehicles will be used to convey the unloaded freight from harbors and train stations to the military exercise venues. Railway stations to be used for military cargo shipments include some major terminal stations, such as Kyoto Station and Sendai Station.

The Defense Ministry has promoted the use of civilian ferries on the pretext of enhancing the SDF’s quick response capability. Such a large-scale use of train services is rare.

In the mobilization training course, a total of 12,000 GSDF personnel and 3,900 military vehicles from GSDF bases in Hokkaido, Yamagata, and Kagawa will be transported by sea and land. For sea transport, civilian ferries will be mobilized and major harbors, including Otaru, Tokyo, Nagoya, Kobe, and Oita, will be used as points of departure.

The GSDF military exercise began on September 15 and will last until late November with 100,000 personnel in total participating. This is the first time in 30 years that the GSDF will conduct such huge military exercises.

JCP lawmaker Shiokawa said that the military drills adopt a scenario of mobilizing civilians on a massive scale for the transport of military supplies and personnel to an anticipated area of conflict with China and this is unacceptable. He added that the holding of such drills amid the pandemic totally runs counter to efforts to put a stop to the spread of infections.

In Shizuoka’s Hamamatsu City where the Air SDF Hamamatsu base is located, the JCP city assemblymembers’ group on September 21 submitted to the mayor a written request demanding a halt to the massive military exercises.

The JCP in its document pointed out that the drills, which will result in the movement of 12,000 SDF personnel, go against measures to contain COVID-19 and will cause anxieties and fears to spread among Hamamatsu citizens. It demanded that the mayor urge the national government and the Defense Ministry to cancel the drills.
> List of Past issues
  Copyright (c) Japan Press Service Co., Ltd. All right reserved