- Allies coordinate in aftermath of Osprey crash, mourn 8 servicemen
- US, Japan, South Korea launch cybersecurity effort on North Korea
- US & Japan sign new agreement to counter foreign info manipulation
- Tokyo hosts US-Japan officials for Extended Deterrence Dialogue
- IBM & Univ of Tokyo set up Japan’s first 127-qubit quantum system
- Following the crash of a CV-22 Osprey on Nov. 29 near Kagoshima that cost the lives of 8 US servicemen, defense chiefs Austin and Kihara called the safety of the aircraft a top priority following a call on Dec. 12. The large search and rescue mission included 9 US and Japanese military commands and local civilians. A planned Japanese demonstration of the aircraft at Kyushu’s Saga Airport was canceled and all flights grounded. This was followed by the US grounding of its Ospreys until an investigation into mechanical issues was done. Biden called the servicemen the backbone of the nation, and Kishida expressed Japan’s gratitude to the airmen and said the country was filled with deep sorrow. Honoring their legacy, the allies pressed on with Yama Sakura 85, formerly a bilateral exercise that now includes Australian Defense Forces simulating the evacuation of civilians, information warfare, and countering combined arms.
- The US, Japan, and South Korea held their inaugural meeting of the Trilateral Diplomatic Working Group in Tokyo to counter North Korean cyber threats on December 7. The meeting focused on pursuing joint actions to disrupt the North’s cyber theft and ransomware, led by US Deputy Special Representative for the DPRK Dr. Jung Pak, Japanese Amb for Cyber Policy Hideo Ishizuki, and South Korean MOFA Director General for North Korean Nuclear Affairs Lee Jun-il. Separately, the national security advisers of the three nations met in Seoul to discuss North Korean missile programs, its arms sales to Russia, and the regimes illicit cyber activities on December 9.
- State Dept. Under Secretary for Public Diplomacy/Public Affairs Allen and MOFA Asst. Minister for Press and Public Diplomacy Kobayashi signed a Memorandum of Cooperation on countering foreign information manipulation in Tokyo Dec. 6. The aim is to improve capacities to counter at each stage of detecting, analyzing, and then responding to info manipulation. The memorandum confirms info exchange to that end and the direction of future cooperation. Ms. Allen also met with State Minister Horii to discuss future collaboration. Separately, MOFA held an online workshop on Dec. 11 engaging Southeast Asian nations on the topic of countering misinformation.
- US and Japan officials met for the Extended Deterrence Dialogue (EDD) in Tokyo from Dec. 5-7. Mr. Shingo Miyamoto of MOFA and Mr. Atsushi Ando of MOD co-chaired the dialogue with Ms. Alexandra Bell of the State Dept, and Mr. Richard Johnson of DOD. The two sides discussed strengthening deterrence and response capabilities to meet regional security challenges. The delegation also ran a tabletop exercise to discuss alliance crisis management and visited the Ground Self-Defense Force’s Amphibious Rapid Deployment Brigade (ARDB) installations in Kyushu.
- The first 127-qubit quantum computing system outside North America was deployed in Japan on Nov. 27. The system leverages the IBM Quantum Eagle “utility scale” processor and operates at the University of Tokyo. Scientists at institutions participating in this Quantum Innovation Initiative Consortium (QII) will use the system for quantum research in bioinformatics, high energy physics, materials science, and finance, among other disciplines.
“US-Japan Alliance Digest” is a bi-weekly summary of bilateral and related developments compiled by Sasakawa USA’s “US-Japan NEXT Alliance Initiative.” To receive “Alliance Digest” via email, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.