Japan Eyeing Long-Range Weapons

Society Politics

Tokyo, Oct. 16 (Jiji Press)--Japan's Defense Ministry has been stepping up acquisitions of cruise missiles for fighter planes and promoting research on hypersonic missiles.

The moves may give the country the ability to strike enemy bases without in-depth discussions on how to maintain its exclusively defense-oriented national security policy.

The ministry has so far decided to equip the Air Self-Defense Force's F-35A stealth fighters with Norwegian-made Joint Strike Missiles, or JSMs, with a range of about 500 kilometers.

It has also decided to introduce U.S.-made Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missiles, or JASSMs, and Long-Range Anti-Ship Missiles, or LRASMs, both with a range of about 900 kilometers, for the ASDF's F-15 fighters.

On the reason for the decisions, the ministry said that it is necessary to introduce missiles that can be operated by SDF officers safely from outside areas threatened by opponents.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press