FY 2005 Orientation Program for United States Forces Japan

December 7, 2005

  1. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan (MOFA) is planning to host this year's Orientation Program for USFJ from the 17th to the 20th of January, 2006.
  2. The aim of this Orientation Program is to improve the understanding of the Japanese perspective by USFJ officer personnel who have recently arrived in Japan. This will be the eleventh time that this program is being held. Approximately twenty officers from the components of the USFJ are expected to take part.
  3. The participants of the program will attend lectures on wide-ranging subjects such as Japanese politics, defense and security, economy, society, have discussion with MOFA officials, and take part in Japanese cultural programs.
  4. Participants are expected to share knowledge which they gain from the program to their respective units. Furthermore, because U.S. military officers sometimes return to Japan on subsequent assignments as they go up the career ladder, this orientation can yield compound and long-term benefits over many years. The increased understanding of the Japanese perspective by U.S. personnel has important practical benefits. It can lead to involvement by American officers in activities to promote "good neighbor" relations with the citizens of local communities. It should also raise their level of awareness of safety concerns among the Japanese public. In sum, the Orientation Program should contribute to the smooth and effective operation of U.S.-Japan security arrangements and, ultimately, further development of the U.S.-Japan relationship.

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