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HOME  > Past issues  > 2016 March 16 - 22  > Refusals growing among new graduates of defense academy to become officers
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2016 March 16 - 22 TOP3 [SDF]

Refusals growing among new graduates of defense academy to become officers

March 20, 2016
More than 10% of the graduates this spring from the National Defense Academy of Japan, which educates and trains prospective officers in the Self-Defense Forces, are declining to accept their commissions with the increasing possibility of the SDF to use armed force abroad.

Obtaining this information in an inquiry to the Defense Ministry, Akahata on March 19 reported that the number of graduates turning down their commissions this year will almost double that of the previous year.

A Defense Ministry official admitted that he cannot deny the possibility that the increase in the number of the refusers may be due to the recent changes in the conventional constitutional interpretations concerning the right to collective self-defense as well as the enactment of the security-related legislation.

Looking at the past few years, the number of those who decided not to accept a military commission totaled 10 out of 434 graduates in fiscal 2013 which accounted for 2.3% of the total. However, the number jumped to 25 (5.3%) out of 472 graduates in fiscal 2014 after the Cabinet approved a decision to allow the SDF to exercise the collective self-defense right abroad. During FY 2015 ending this month, the ruling forces forcibly enacted the controversial war laws. Those who have so far declared their intention to excuse themselves from military duties amount to 47 (11.2%) out of 419 new graduates.

The number of refusers hit a record of 91 graduates or 19% in fiscal 1990 when the Gulf War broke out.
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