self defense force

Ghibli film secret revealed as Japan Self-Defense Forces soldier deciphers secret code in Laputa

According to this former soldier, the message that director Hayao Miyazaki hid in morse code has never been revealed until now.

Read More

Looking for a unique job environment? This could be as unique (and isolated) as it gets in Japan!

Iwo Jima — the name may conjure harsh images of the famous Battle of Iwo Jima, which took place on the small island during World War II in 1945. It belongs to the Ogasawara Islands, a group of tropical and sub-tropical islands known for unique wildlife and flora, and is officially a part of Ogasawara Village, which is administered by the Tokyo Metropolitan government, which means technically, it’s part of Tokyo, although the island is located roughly 1,200km (about 745 miles) south of the Japanese capital city. While it isn’t inhabited by civilians, Iwo Jima is home to an air base that’s used by the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force and the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force.

Well, it so happens this base has been the subject of some attention on the Japanese Internet recently — as a possible workplace! When you hear the job description, you’ll see just how unique a workplace it is, and you’ll never guess what kind of employee they’re looking for …

Read More

Japan Self-Defense Force’s elite Central Band performs Hatsune Miku song Senbonzakura

There are a number of active bands in Japan’s Ground Self-Defense Force (GSDF), but at the top of them is the Central Band. In existence longer the GSDF itself, they are the go-to band in situations where it’s unacceptable to screw up, such as welcoming foreign dignitaries and ceremonies of the highest order.

Then there’s “Senbonzakura”. This song was produced by WhiteFlame (aka Kurousa-P) and utilizes the artificial vocal talents of vocaloid Hatsune Miku. After its upload to video hosting site Niconico Douga in 2011, it became a modern classic of the vocaloid genre spawning several remixes and covers online and in karaoke rooms.

So what happens when the rigid discipline and tradition of the GSDF Central Band meets the wild pop of Senbonzakura? Let’s take a listen!

Read More

Applications for Japan Self Defense Force increase by 20% thanks to moe

Cuteness sells, even if what you’re selling is recruitment for the Japan Self-Defense Force (JSDF) and the National Defense Academy (NDA). Since last July, the JSDF’s Okayama Provincial Cooperation Office has been using three adorable mascot girls to raise awareness for the JSDF. The girls represent each military branch of the forces, sporting the uniforms for each. Momoe Kibi represents the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (Army), Mizuho Seto represents the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (Navy), while Airi Bizen represents the Japan Air Self Defense Force (Air Force). If the design aesthetic looks familiar, it’s because the girls were created by Humikane Shimada, the original character designer behind such military-inspired moe series like Strike Witches and Girls und Panzer.

Read More

5-4-3-2-1 Thunderbirds and Japan’s Self Defense Force are Go!?

Word has been circulating that the famous British sci-fi puppetry program Thunderbirds and Japan’s pseudo-military, The Self Defense Force (SDF) are teaming up for a promotional campaign.

A series of posters will be released explaining the similarities between the missions of the fictional IRO (International Rescue Organization) and functional SDF: “international peace cooperation activities and disaster relief.”

Read More