Forces: September 24, 2004


The Japanese defense budget, one of the largest in the world, is going up 1.2 percent next year, to $45 billion. The Japanese armed forces are reorganizing, with less emphasis on traditional ground forces, and more money going into ballistic missile defense, and counter-terrorism. The army has already been shrunk, and efforts are underway to create ground troops capable of dealing with peacekeeping, or commando operations. Billions of dollars will go into buying American ballistic missile defense systems. This will provide some protection from North Korean, as well as Chinese, missiles. 


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