Tuesday, December 1, 2009

U.S. Army, Japan Ground Self-Defense Force to Train during Yama Sakura

The Japan-based U.S. Army I Corps Forward, U.S. Army Pacific and the Japan Ground Self Defense Force will train together Dec. 8-14 during exercise Yama Sakura, a joint command post exercise in Hokkaido, Japan.

Yama Sakura, which means "mountain cherry blossom," is an annual, full-spectrum, combined command post exercise with U.S. and Japanese personnel working to strengthen Japan's self defense operations.

This year, U.S. Army Pacific's Contingency Command Post and I Corps Forward, which will be conducting its first training deployment, form the central command and control element for U.S. forces.

The annual exercise rotates among each of the Japan Ground Self-Defense Forces’s five regional armies. This year, the Northern Army will participate. Also a joint exercise for the United States, Yama Sakura combines U.S. Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marine Corps elements, including Reservists and National Guard forces.

Approximately 1,500 U.S. military personnel and 3,500 Japan Ground Self-Defense Force personnel will take part.

U.S. Army Soldiers and members of the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force work together in July to plan for exercise Yama Sakura, which begins next week.

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