ADF, Marine Rotational Forces and Japanese Self Defence Forces
Japanese Self Defence forces have participated annually in Exercise Southern Jackaroo since at least 2014, working to increase interoperability with Australian and U.S. forces. Ground Self Defence Force personnel train together with ADF troops and elements of the U.S. Marine Rotational Forces in the the Northern Territory. The Japanese government, with U.S. encouragement, is working towards a time when the Japanese public and countries in Southeast Asia will accept what a leading Washington policy organisation describes as the possibility that ‘Japan can assume a unique role in the region‘.
‘Japanese troops set to join Southern Jackaroo exercise’, Australian Defence Magazine, 9 June 2021
Japanese troops have arrived in Darwin ahead of the trilateral Exercise Southern Jackaroo 2021, joining US Marines already undertaking training in the region.
Soldiers from the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF), having served the mandatory quarantine period, will join their counterparts from Australia and the US for the exercise in the Northern Territory which will run from 15-25 June.
Chief of Army Lieutenant General Rick Burr said the annual activity reinforces the cooperation between Australian, Japanese and US forces across a range of military disciplines including infantry, aviation, artillery, and combat engineer training.
「平成３０年度豪州における米豪軍との実動訓練「サザンジャッカルー１８」」, 陸上自衛隊 広報チャンネル, YouTube, 18 June 2018
Mitsuko Hayashi, How Japan Can Forge Resiliency and Defense Capacity: Building in the Indo-Pacific in the Era of Covid-19‘, Center for Strategic and International Studies, 17 July 2020.
In a strategic context, some argue the Covid-19 pandemic will bring about a severe escalation of tensions between the United States and China or a power shift from one to the other. There is another suggestion: Japan can assume a unique role in the region. This is the point of view expressed in the State of Southeast Asia: 2020 Survey Report, where respondents considered Japan the first strategic option (38.2 percent) for hedging against U.S.-China competition, followed by the European Union (31.7 percent) and Australia (8.8 percent)….
…The MOD has also strengthened defense relationships with like-minded partners, putting more focus on addressing regional challenges such as HA/DR and maritime security. The Joint Declaration on Security Cooperation signed with Australia in 2007 and with India in 2008 provided the impetus to advance those respective relationships. With Australia, Japan has improved interoperability through joint training of all services based on the Acquisition and Cross Servicing Agreement (ACSA). Both countries enhanced not only bilateral but also trilateral exercises including the Japan-U.S.-Australia Southern Jackaroo and Cope North Guam.