Japan to Send Patriot Interceptors to the US, Freeing Up American Supplies to Send to Ukraine

by | Dec 26, 2023

Japan to Send Patriot Interceptors to the US, Freeing Up American Supplies to Send to Ukraine

by | Dec 26, 2023

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Japan will send Patriot Air Defense missiles to the US. The move will allow Washington to dive deeper into its own stockpiles for transfers supporting Ukraine’s war effort. Tokyo is altering its arms export laws to send the Patriots to Washington. 

On Friday, Japan announced it had loosened its arms export control laws. Shortly after, Tokyo said it would use its new authorities to provide Washington with the Patriot air defense missiles. In Japan, the Patriot interceptors are produced by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries with licenses from Lockheed Martin and Raytheon.  

The Patriots are considered some of Washington’s most advanced air defense missiles. The Biden administration has sold Patriots to its European and Asian partners. Additionally, the US has sent the interceptors to Ukraine and deployed the systems in the Middle East. The White House’s desire to expand the US military around the globe has strained the Patriot supply. 

The Biden administration welcomed the Japanese decision. The transfer takes Tokyo further from its non-interventionist post-WWII constitution. Additionally, Japan recently adopted its largest-ever military budget. 

“I don’t see another country that’s adopted so many changes so significant to our deterrence and our security,” US Ambassador to Japan Rahm Emanuel said. “The scale, the scope and the speed is unprecedented and really welcome.”

Emanuel continued, that the Japanese missiles would “give us flexibility in our inventories.” The ambassador suggested Washington leverage the new Patriots to send American-made Patriots to Ukraine. 

About Kyle Anzalone

Kyle Anzalone is news editor of the Libertarian Institute, opinion editor of Antiwar.com and co-host of Conflicts of Interest with Will Porter and Connor Freeman.

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