Since the end of World War 2, Japan has returned to the global community under the principle of “Strong Economy, Light Arm.” However, after the Cold War ended, Japan had come upon a new international environment. In the Gulf War of 1991, Japan declined to send in JSDF in the first plaece, which raised criticism from countries all over the world. Viewing this as a turning point, Japan started to alter its foreign policy for the past 40 years, and tries to regain the status of “a normal state” to be recognized by international society.
Under this transition, the defense policy of Japan also began to change. Besides making new laws allowing Self-Defense Forces (JSDF) to participate in the peacekeeping task of the United Nations, Japan begins to expand the defence ability of the JSDF, including missile defense and “emerge event surrounding japan”,etc. At the same time, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force(JMSDF) has played an important role during this transition. But, some Asian countries seem to be worring about this transitions of the JSDF in recent years, and they have been regarded it as the Revival of Militarism. So the purpose of this thesis is to understand that what is the factors behind the transition of JMSDF. Is it a kind of national strategic demand or revial of Militarism?
Through this thesis, we can understand that the JMSDF’s transition after the First Gulf War is not Revial of Militarism, but a kind of tool which matches national strategic development. The international contributions and missions of territory defense which JMSDF has engagemented are not an action of aggression. We can also know that there is a great difference between the political system of Japan nowdays and World War II period, so the JMSDF does not share the same political influence as the Imperial Japanese Navy.