Japanese Self Defense Force officers tour the Missile Defense Integrated
Operations Center at Schriever Air Force Base, Colorado, as part of a visit to
the Joint Function Component Command for Integrated Missile Defense.
(Photo Credit: Courtesy photo)
SCHRIEVER AIR FORCE BASE, Colorado - The Joint Functional Component Command for
Integrated Missile Defense hosted five members of Japan's Joint Staff in July in
Colorado Springs. This was the fourth consecutive year JFCC IMD hosted Japanese
staff officers, in what has become a staple training event for both nations.
JFCC IMD assumed this training event in 2014 following seven years of
sponsorship by the Missile Defense Agency. This engagement with the Japanese
Joint Staff is part of JFCC IMD's ongoing effort
to build, sustain and support partnerships with ally nations through training
"Given the increasing global threat, leveraging joint, allied and partner
integration is essential," said Lt. Gen. James Dickinson, JFCC IMD's commanding
general. "We must continue to emphasize and advance interoperability and
integration through operations, exercises, foreign military sales, and other
security cooperation opportunities."
All five Japanese officers said the training improved the partnership between
Japan and the United States and that they appreciated the importance of this
course in the current climate.
"I hope this course grows every year," said Lt. Col. Atasushi Kamata who is part
of the ballistic missile defense operations and plans section on the Japan Joint
Staff. "Considering the situation around Japan, we need this training and
support about BMD."
One of JFCC IMD's key tasks, as an organization, is to integrate and synchronize
joint BMD training, exercises and test activities. More than 3,400 individuals
from around the world receive training from JFCC IMD, and in this particular
instance, the training was conducted under the governance of the Foreign
Military Sales training procedures.
"Obviously, Japan has BMD, and we are always looking to improve and learn the
ways the U.S. is using BMD," Maj. Takahiro Nakagawa said. "It's helpful from a
While in Colorado Springs, the Japanese officers were able to participate in
some sightseeing to include the Air Force Academy, Pikes Peak, Bass Pro Shop and
a Colorado Rockies baseball game.
"While in Colorado Springs, our visitors normally try to participate in a number
of our local events and activities, such as mountain climbing and hiking, the
zoo, and attending a Rockies game in Denver," JFCC IMD Joint Training and
Education Chief Ron Dennison said. "They also enjoy our local dining
Kamata enjoyed his stay so much that he plans to tackle one of the area's
biggest outdoor offerings if he makes a trip back.
"If I have chance to come back [to Colorado Springs], I will climb Pikes Peak,"
JFCC IMD synchronizes missile defense planning, conducts BMD operations support,
and advocates for missile defense capabilities in support of U.S. Strategic
Command, other combatant commands, the services, and appropriate U.S. government
agencies, to deter and defend the U.S., deployed forces, and its allies against
ballistic missile attacks.