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Cablegate: Dasd Mahnken Meetings in Japan On Bilateral

VZCZCXRO9944
PP RUEHDT RUEHPB
DE RUEHKO #2097/01 2130527
ZNY SSSSS ZZH
P 310527Z JUL 08
FM AMEMBASSY TOKYO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6201
INFO RUCNARF/ASEAN REGIONAL FORUM COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING PRIORITY 4641
RUEHMO/AMEMBASSY MOSCOW PRIORITY 2442
RUEHUL/AMEMBASSY SEOUL PRIORITY 0632
RUEHFK/AMCONSUL FUKUOKA PRIORITY 9122
RUEHNH/AMCONSUL NAHA PRIORITY 1496
RUEHOK/AMCONSUL OSAKA KOBE PRIORITY 2852
RUEHKSO/AMCONSUL SAPPORO PRIORITY 9705
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEHIN/AIT TAIPEI PRIORITY 7095
RHEHAAA/NSC WASHDC PRIORITY
RUEKJCS/JOINT STAFF WASHINGTON DC PRIORITY
RHHMUNA/HQ USPACOM HONOLULU HI PRIORITY
RUHPSAA/COMMARFORPAC PRIORITY
RHHMHBA/COMPACFLT PEARL HARBOR HI PRIORITY
RHMFISS/USFJ PRIORITY
RHOVVKG/COMSEVENTHFLT PRIORITY
RHMFISS/COMUSKOREA SEOUL KOR PRIORITY
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHDC PRIORITY

S E C R E T SECTION 01 OF 05 TOKYO 002097

SIPDIS

DOD FOR OSD/APSA SEDNEY/HILL/BASALLA/GEIS
DOD FOR OSD/PLANNING MAHNKEN/YOUNG
JOINT STAFF FOR J5 WEIR/KOSINSKI
JOINT STAFF FOR J7 ROUNDS/MUTTY/NELSON
PACOM FOR J00/J01/J3/J5
USFJ FOR J00/J01/J3/J5

E.O. 12958: DECL: 07/30/2023
TAGS: PGOV JA MARR PARM PGOV PINR PREL
SUBJECT: DASD MAHNKEN MEETINGS IN JAPAN ON BILATERAL
PLANNING

TOKYO 00002097 001.2 OF 005


Classified By: Deputy Chief of Mission James Zumwalt. Reasons 1.4 (b) a
nd (d).

1. (S) SUMMARY: Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for
Policy Planning Dr. Thomas Mahnken met with Japanese
counterparts from the Ministries of Defense and Foreign
Affairs (MOD and MOFA), Cabinet Secretariat and the Japan
Self Defense Forces Joint Staff Office (JSDF JSO) on July 17
to encourage continued progress on bilateral planning.
During his meetings, DASD Mahnken highlighted the need for
timely U.S. military access to Japanese civilian air and sea
ports during a Korean Peninsula contingency. He also pressed
for the quick completion of surveys of those facilities.
DASD Mahnken stressed the need for timely decision-making by
Japan to support a U.S. contingency response and urged Japan
to include a decision matrix in the next cycle of bilateral
planning for Concept Plan (CONPLAN) 5055. He also emphasized
the need for early activation of the Bilateral Coordination
Mechanism (BCM), and in particular the Bilateral Coordination
Center (BCC) that facilitates military coordination, critical
for effective contingency response. MOFA and MOD outlined
the difficulties in conducting certain site surveys and
reviewed the limits of the central government's authority
over prefecture and privately-owned ports. The JSO briefed
on JSDF military activities during contingencies in the area,
including the use of civilian air and sea ports to support
the evacuation of Japanese nationals from South Korea during
a contingency. MOD, MOFA, and JSO representatives agreed
with the need for early military coordination in a
contingency and said they are moving toward a more ""flexible
activation"" of the BCC. End summary.

2. (U) DASD for Policy Planning Dr. Thomas Mahnken led a July
17 meeting on bilateral contingency planning with MOD, MOFA
and JSDF JSO counterparts. The lead Japanese representatives
were MOD Deputy Director General (DDG) for Defense Policy
Ryutaro Matsumoto, MOFA DDG for North American Affairs Koji
Haneda, Cabinet Secretariat Counsellor Takai Kawashima, JSO
Operations Division (J3) head COL Shigeki Muto, and JSO
Defense and International Policy Division (J-5) head CAPT
Tatsuhiko Takashima. Representatives from the Office of the
Secretary of Defense's Japan Desk and Policy Planning Office,
U.S. Joint Staff, Pacific Command (PACOM), U.S. Forces Japan
(USFJ), and the Embassy also participated in the day-long
meeting.

Briefing on U.S. Access to Japanese Air and Sea Ports
--------------------------------------------- --------

3. (S) At Japan's request, representatives from PACOM briefed
on the current concept of operations for strategic maneuver
options and military deployments to Japan in a Korean
Peninsula contingency. The presentation focused on
air-to-air and air-to-sea transload options for passengers
and cargo, as well as the anticipated U.S. military need for
access to and logistics support at Japan's civilian airports
and sea ports during a U.S. military contingency response.
This PACOM ""transparency briefing"" followed a similar
presentation by PACOM Deputy J-5 Brig Gen Sam Angelella on
May 19, 2008, in Tokyo, in response to requests from Japan
for information on U.S. contingency response plans to support
the completion of site surveys of 23 Japanese civilian air
and sea ports.

4. (S) The brief included the current estimated number of
required parking places for aircraft, expected passenger
throughput and tonnage, fuel requirements, and the planned
aircraft bed down. PACOM stressed that one of the most
significant risks to the current contingency plan is not
having early access to Japan's air and sea ports. The United
States will need 24-hour, seven-days-a-week access to Japan's
air and seaports at least two days prior to the start of
conflict and will need access to the facilities within 48
hours after making a request.

5. (S) Dr. Mahnken stressed that the results of the site
surveys are necessary to clearly understand the current
capacity and logistic support capabilities at Japan's
civilian air and sea ports. This will allow the United States
to validate its current plans and to be more flexible in
determining which bases could be used in a crisis. (Note:
Japan agreed to conduct these site surveys in the October
2005 Security Consultative Committee (SCC) Joint Statement.
End note.)

6. (S) MOFA DDG Haneda noted that the models for air and sea
port usage should take into account the ownership of each
facility, i.e. whether owned and controlled by the central
government, prefecture, private entity or port authority.
The models also need to take into account the specific
authorities the central government has over the facilities in
peacetime, during a ""situation in areas surrounding Japan""
(SIASJ), or after an attack on Japan. For instance, SIASJ
only allows the central government to request action of
prefecture and privately-owned ports, whereas during an armed
attack against Japan the Prime Minister has the authority to
move Japan civil/private planes and ships, MOFA and JSO
representatives noted.

Site Surveys of Civilian Airports and Seaports
--------------------------------------------- -

7. (S) DASD Mahnken thanked his counterparts for completing
the site surveys of two airports and two seaports, while
stating the importance of quickly completing the remaining
site surveys and pressing Japan to provide a timeline for
completion. While not providing a timeline, MOFA DDG Haneda
indicated that the next survey would be at Shimonoseki
seaport in August. MOD and MOFA representatives explained
the difficulty of completing some of the remaining Phase 1
site surveys due to historical reasons (such as Nagasaki),
areas that are opposition party strongholds, or the lack of
central government ownership (Kansai International Airport).
An additional constraint is that the government cannot reveal
the purpose of the site surveys to the public.

8. (S) MOD asked whether using publicly available data, in
lieu of visiting the facilities, could satisfy the survey
requirements. U.S. representatives said the method for
meeting the survey requirements is up to Japan, however, the
data requested by U.S. Transportation Command (TRANSCOM) is
what is needed to understand the capacity of each facility.
Some of the required data can only be obtained by doing
physical inspections. DASD Mahnken suggested that Japan
might start surveys on easier Phase 2 facilities while
working out the issues over the more difficult Phase 1
facilities.

JSDF Planning for a Korean Contingency
--------------------------------------

9. (S) MOD and JSO representatives gave a presentation on
JSDF activities in a Korean Peninsula contingency, including
the use of air and sea ports during SIASJ and an armed attack
against Japan, with a particular emphasis on operations to
support the transport of Japanese nationals overseas (TJNO),
equivalent to U.S. non-combatant evacuation operations (NEO).
Japan plans to send JSDF ships and aircraft to South Korea
for TJNO during SIASJ, if necessary to augment Japan civil
air and sea capacity. Japan would need to get Republic of
Korea prior approval and MOD would need to be confident that
transport by JSDF aircraft would be safe, i.e. they would not
be transiting, entering or departing from hostilities.
Significant JSDF activities would include convoy support and
minesweeping, search and rescue operations, and ship
inspections. JSO representatives noted that minesweeping
activities by the JSDF is allowed under SIASJ against
""abandoned mines,"" i.e. floating mines or mines otherwise
seemingly dumped off a ship and abandoned. JSO suggested
that the ""abandoned mines"" concept would allow Japan the
flexibility to conduct minesweeping operations but asked that
the United States not press for further definition of an
abandoned mine.

Bilateral Planning Schedule for CONPLAN 5055
--------------------------------------------

10. (S) USFJ reviewed the agreed schedule for the next cycle
of bilateral planning for Concept Plan (CONPLAN) 5055. The
current CONPLAN 5055-07 was bilaterally approved in September
2007. The recent bilateral agreement on the tasking for the
Comprehensive Security Assessment (CSA) and the Subcommittee
for Defense Cooperation (SDC) Bilateral Planning Framework
and Guidance will allow detailed planning work to begin on
CONPLAN 5055-09 in September 2008. The CSA will be completed
in March 2009 and the draft CONPLAN 5055-09 and associated
annexes will be completed in July 2009. Following draft plan
completion, a review and approval process will be conducted
by both sides. The completed CONPLAN 5055-09 should be signed
in September 2009.

Risks and Assumptions in CONPLAN 5055
-------------------------------------

11. (S) The United States led a discussion on the risks
associated with our current assumptions in CONPLAN 5055. The
focus of that discussion centered primarily on the need for
timely decision-making and quick establishment of the
Bilateral Coordination Mechanism (BCM), particularly during
the early phases of a contingency. Building on the earlier
""transparency briefing,"" U.S. participants stressed the need
to better understand Japan's decision-making, particularly
when moving from peacetime to SIASJ.

12. (S) MOFA stated that Japan does not ""declare"" SIASJ on
its own behalf, but rather the implementation of SIASJ is a
bilateral event that allows Japan to provide support to U.S.
forces. The U.S. would inform Japan that a contingency
around Japan is likely and to provide information on the U.S.
requirements for Japan's support. MOFA would then forward
the request to activate SIASJ measures to the Cabinet for a
decision. U.S. participants noted that the United States
sees the implementation of SIASJ as ultimately a unilateral
decision by Japan. DASD Mahnken commented that the
discussion on decision responsibilities and timing warrants
the development of a decision-making matrix for CONPLAN 5055
that would track the sequencing of unilateral and bilateral
decisions needed during a contingency. (Note: This is a USFJ
initiative included in the SDC Bilateral Planning Guidance
for 5055-09 that the Japanese Joint Staff had resisted at
working levels. End note.) Both sides agreed to begin
coordination on a decision matrix for 5055.

Bilateral Coordination Needed Prior to a Contingency
--------------------------------------------- -------

13. (S) Discussions on the need for early activation of the
Bilateral Coordination Mechanism (BCM) and the Bilateral
Coordination Center (BCC) included a review of Japan's
response to North Korea's July 2006 missile test. The
Embassy Political Minister Counselor noted that coordination
of operations and intelligence in the run-up to, and
following the July 2006 North Korean missile launches, had
been ad hoc. Many with a need-to-know in the Japanese
government had not been informed of intelligence data and
operational issues. MOFA representatives responded that
Japan had not seen a need to stand up the BCM and BCC as
there had not been any operational issues necessitating
coordination. Embassy PolMinCouns responded that there had
been a clear operational need at that time. For example U.S.
and Japan Aegis ships were operating in the Sea of Japan and
needed to share data and coordinate with one another.
Japanese government officials also needed to be aware of our
Navy and MSDF operations. The creation of the ad hoc
Azabudai Group, consisting of senior Japanese policy-makers,
Embassy officials, and USFJ representatives, to deal with the
crisis at that time is evidence that added bilateral
coordination mechanisms are necessary.

14. (S) U.S. participants said that political decisions, or
the delay thereof, in the run-up to a contingency should not
prevent military coordination between U.S. forces and the
JSDF. USFJ Deputy Commander Major General Flock suggested
the BCC, in some form, be active at all times and continually
staffed at some minimal level so that it is ready to be fully
stood-up at a moments notice. He also suggested that the BCM
and BCC process needs to be exercised more, especially since
most current bilateral exercises assume SIASJ or an armed
attack against Japan has already occurred.

15. (S) Both MOFA and MOD DDGs indicated that the is moving
toward a more ""flexible activation"" of the BCC, with DDG
Matsumoto noting that this would allow BCC activation without
the establishment of the BCM on the authority of the Japan
JSO Chief of Staff and the SUFJ Commander. (NOTE: This is
senior-level MOD confirmation of a proposal an MOD action
officer presented to USFJ and Embassy representatives the
previous week. The proposal is now under consideration at
USFJ. End note.)

16. (S) The Japan JSO J-3 operations representative expressed
support for having the BCC established during peacetime,
especially since Japan now has ballistic missile interceptor
capability. MOFA also noted that whether an entity called
""BCC"" exists or not during peacetime, the substantive actions
of the BCC need to occur in peacetime before a contingency
occurs. This statement drew agreeing nods from all on the
Japan side.

SIASJ Under Review
------------------

17. In subsequent office calls, Director General Takamizawa
and Director General Tokuchi both mentioned that the current
SIASJ law was insufficient and the MOD is currently reviewing
the legal system for SIASJ and how the law could be improved
to allow for greater flexibility and realism in a
contingency. MOD has identified several areas for
improvement and by August will choose specific areas for
further study.

18. (U) DASD Mahnken cleared this cable.

SCHIEFFER

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