Japan had nothing for several years, but eventually the US decided it wanted help from Japan as a counterbalance to China, NK, etc. and now they have a very modern Self Defense Force, which is only supposed to be for Defense. However, the last time I looked at Japan's defense budget, it was in the top 10.
I may be wrong but Japan always had a Defense Force that was strictly limited by McArther doctrines which was enforced by Japanese parliament. So they always had a small navy a small air force and a small army.
When China, NK and Vietnam got stupid - Japan was allowed to build past the limitations of the McArther doctrines. They really now have a Defense Force that really can defend <-- and thats the key word (defense) by Japans own political structure , Japan cannot allow its military to build up to be an (aggressor) -> mind you that it takes far far less resources to defend a country than it would take to invade one.
However theres is that one (carrot) = Iraq.
Which the US invaded a country that had 1.2 million man army - with only 200,000 troops = Hi-Tech all the way + training.
Bottom line; Unless NK feels that they have the heads up on Hi-Tech - NK is just gonna be just like another Iraq a complete walk over ?
The trauma of the lost war had produced strong pacifist sentiments among the nation, that found expression in the United States-written 1947 constitution, which, under Article 9, forever renounces war as an instrument for settling international disputes and declares that Japan will never again maintain "land, sea, or air forces or other war potential". Later cabinets interpreted these provisions as not denying the nation the inherent right to self-defense and, with the encouragement of the United States, developed the forces step by step.
As I said, at first and for a number of years Japan was completely demitiliarized.
_________________________ We are what we repeatedly do - Aristotle
I think we were there only 3. 1950-1953. And then we were coming off WWII. We had the upper hand with NK until the Chinese jumped in and we decided to call it a stalemate. When you're outnumbered 20 to one and the country is sick of war - it's difficult to fight one, esp. half a world away. We were still trying to rebuild Germany and Japan... we had our hands full (same as now). But the big difference is technology. NK can't come close to us with technology... have better jets, tanks, ships, missiles (that don't crash into the sea!)... NOT saying it would be a cakewalk, but they'd lose.... unless China chimes in.
NOW That's the tricky part now. WE (USA) should tell China make NK stop this craziness. China can cut off their oil if they don't behave. IF China doesn't and NK does something stupid (nuke or worse), then tell China too late - we're taking them down. Maybe China is putting them up to it to test us !!
However if NK attacks, we don't have many options but to respond ! Don't like it, but if we don't we'll lose more than SK.
David, The US has been telling China for weeks to get a hold of their (Puppet) and tell them to stand down and be calm. Did China do that ? ? I don't know.
NK throws out threats just about every year . Remember when NK sank that SK ship ? When that SK island was shelled by NK artillery. NK has been pretty consistent with threats.
IMO; What has changed from the 50's - is China itself - today is extremely prosperous (West Money) , modern , Chinas people are globe trotting and investing in the West as well. NK is just an old wounded puppet that keeps bleeding and China keeps sending support.
Now that China is (extremely) reliant on the west commerce - for them to pull on NK side with force -> you betcha that the West will embargo all of China = this means back to stone age and I don't think China can go backwards because her people now taste capitalism and will not put up with the old communist Mantra. <- I know I have pants loads of Chinese (young) nationals in the building , driving Mercs/BMWs , conducting business and flying back and forth to China constantly.
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