SLIDE SHOW: YAMA SAKURA, CAMP ASAKA, JAPAN

By U.S. ArmyDecember 12, 2008

From the left 1st Lt. Satoshi Masaka, Japanese Ground Self Defense Force (JGSDF) Plans Division-Northeast Army and members of the Tennessee National Guard's 230th Theater Sustainment Brigade, engineer Maj. Jennifer Steed; military intelligence systems analyst Staff Sgt. Charles Williams; and maintenance NCOIC Master Sgt. David Spence track and verify the movement of Japanese forces, Monday, Dec. 8, 2008, at the U.S. Army Pacific Operations Command Post during bilateral training exercise Yama Sakura 55. This year's exercise, which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 14, marks the 27th year Japan and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. This also is the first time USARPAC has taken on the role of being the operational command post. Yama Sakura is an annual, computer-based command post exercise conducted by the United States and Japan. This year, more than 1,000 Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine personnel are here interacting with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime self defense forces. Yama Sakura is intended to improve combat readiness of both forces, while continuing to improve security relations between the two nations. "The interest of our countries in defending Japan and keeping the peace in the region requires us to become more familiar with how we will conduct bilateral operations if a situation happens," Masaka said. "It's a great privilege to be working along side my American counterparts in this endeavor." Steed, Williams and Spence echoed his sentiments. "Being here and taking part in YS 55 also is a great honor for us," Steed said. "Through this exercise, we [the U.S. and Japanese military] create a better understanding of how we'll work together on the battlefield to halt any threat to the people of this great island nation." Camp Asaka, 12 miles west of Tokyo, is headquarters for the JGSDF's Eastern Army, and it's the main defense-force hub for Tokyo and 10 surrounding prefectures. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry)
1 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – From the left 1st Lt. Satoshi Masaka, Japanese Ground Self Defense Force (JGSDF) Plans Division-Northeast Army and members of the Tennessee National Guard's 230th Theater Sustainment Brigade, engineer Maj. Jennifer Steed; military intelligence systems analyst Staff Sgt. Charles Williams; and maintenance NCOIC Master Sgt. David Spence track and verify the movement of Japanese forces, Monday, Dec. 8, 2008, at the U.S. Army Pacific Operations Command Post during bilateral training exercise Yama Sakura 55. This year's exercise, which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 14, marks the 27th year Japan and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. This also is the first time USARPAC has taken on the role of being the operational command post. Yama Sakura is an annual, computer-based command post exercise conducted by the United States and Japan. This year, more than 1,000 Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine personnel are here interacting with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime self defense forces. Yama Sakura is intended to improve combat readiness of both forces, while continuing to improve security relations between the two nations. "The interest of our countries in defending Japan and keeping the peace in the region requires us to become more familiar with how we will conduct bilateral operations if a situation happens," Masaka said. "It's a great privilege to be working along side my American counterparts in this endeavor." Steed, Williams and Spence echoed his sentiments. "Being here and taking part in YS 55 also is a great honor for us," Steed said. "Through this exercise, we [the U.S. and Japanese military] create a better understanding of how we'll work together on the battlefield to halt any threat to the people of this great island nation." Camp Asaka, 12 miles west of Tokyo, is headquarters for the JGSDF's Eastern Army, and it's the main defense-force hub for Tokyo and 10 surrounding prefectures. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry) (Photo Credit: Maj. John H Alderman IV) VIEW ORIGINAL
Lieutenant generals Benjamin R. Mixon, commander U.S. Army Pacific, and Kazushi Izumi, commander Japan Ground Self Defense Force Eastern Army, greet each other, Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2008, at USARPC Operations Command Post before getting their morning brief on bilateral training exercise Yama Sakura 55. This year's exercise, which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 14, marks the 27th year Japanese and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. This also is the first time USARPAC has taken on the role of being the operational command post. Yama Sakura is an annual bilateral, computer-based command post exercise conducted by the United States and Japan. This year, more than 1,000 Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine personnel are here interacting with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime self defense forces. Yama Sakura is intended to improve combat readiness of both forces, while continuing to improve security relations between the two nations. Camp Asaka, 12 miles west of Tokyo, is headquarters for the JGSDF's Eastern Army, and it's the main defense-force hub for Tokyo and 10 surrounding prefectures. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry)
2 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Lieutenant generals Benjamin R. Mixon, commander U.S. Army Pacific, and Kazushi Izumi, commander Japan Ground Self Defense Force Eastern Army, greet each other, Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2008, at USARPC Operations Command Post before getting their morning brief on bilateral training exercise Yama Sakura 55. This year's exercise, which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 14, marks the 27th year Japanese and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. This also is the first time USARPAC has taken on the role of being the operational command post. Yama Sakura is an annual bilateral, computer-based command post exercise conducted by the United States and Japan. This year, more than 1,000 Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine personnel are here interacting with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime self defense forces. Yama Sakura is intended to improve combat readiness of both forces, while continuing to improve security relations between the two nations. Camp Asaka, 12 miles west of Tokyo, is headquarters for the JGSDF's Eastern Army, and it's the main defense-force hub for Tokyo and 10 surrounding prefectures. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry) (Photo Credit: Maj. John H. Alderman IV) VIEW ORIGINAL
Army Sgt. 1st Class Tony Bowling (left), first sergeant for Headquarters Company, 8th Theater Sustainment Command out of Fort Shafter, Hawaii, gets a lesson in the art of Calligraphy from Sgt. Maj. Kazuhiko Shimizu of the JGSDF’s 104th General Support Battalion, Dec. 3, 2008, at the camp’s Freedom Room. Bowling, who hails from Canton, Ill., is one of more than 1,000 American Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airmen participating in Yama Sakura 55, along with their counterparts from the Japanese ground, air and maritime services. Yama Sakura is a bilateral U.S.-Japan, computerized command post exercise designed to better the defense of Japan, and to protect each country’s interests throughout East Asia. Many actually started arriving setting up operations about three weeks prior to the exercise starting. This year’s exercise marks the 27th year Japanese and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. YS55, which officially began, Dec. 7 with a ceremony on the grounds of the JGSDF Transportation School, runs until Dec. 14. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry)
3 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Army Sgt. 1st Class Tony Bowling (left), first sergeant for Headquarters Company, 8th Theater Sustainment Command out of Fort Shafter, Hawaii, gets a lesson in the art of Calligraphy from Sgt. Maj. Kazuhiko Shimizu of the JGSDF’s 104th General Support Battalion, Dec. 3, 2008, at the camp’s Freedom Room. Bowling, who hails from Canton, Ill., is one of more than 1,000 American Soldiers, Sailors, Marines and Airmen participating in Yama Sakura 55, along with their counterparts from the Japanese ground, air and maritime services. Yama Sakura is a bilateral U.S.-Japan, computerized command post exercise designed to better the defense of Japan, and to protect each country’s interests throughout East Asia. Many actually started arriving setting up operations about three weeks prior to the exercise starting. This year’s exercise marks the 27th year Japanese and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. YS55, which officially began, Dec. 7 with a ceremony on the grounds of the JGSDF Transportation School, runs until Dec. 14. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry) (Photo Credit: Maj. John H. Alderman IV) VIEW ORIGINAL
From the left Major Max Moore, chief of future plans for Chuqiak-based U.S. Army Alaska, and Air Force Capt. Melissa Couture enjoy the local cuisine at the camp’s Friendship Hall, Dec. 4, 2008, with Capt. Norihisa Yonada, training officer for the Japan Ground Self Defense Force 1st Airborne Brigade. Moore, who hails from Queens, N.Y., is among the more than 1,000 American Army, Navy, Marine and Air Force personnel participating in Yama Sakura 55, along with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime services. Yama Sakura is a bilateral U.S.-Japan, computerized command post exercise designed to better the defense of Japan, and to protect each country’s interests throughout East Asia. Many actually started arriving setting up operations about three weeks prior to the exercise starting. This year’s exercise marks the 27th year Japan and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. YS55, which officially began Dec. 7, with a ceremony on the grounds of the JGSDF Transportation School, runs until Dec. 14. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry)
4 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – From the left Major Max Moore, chief of future plans for Chuqiak-based U.S. Army Alaska, and Air Force Capt. Melissa Couture enjoy the local cuisine at the camp’s Friendship Hall, Dec. 4, 2008, with Capt. Norihisa Yonada, training officer for the Japan Ground Self Defense Force 1st Airborne Brigade. Moore, who hails from Queens, N.Y., is among the more than 1,000 American Army, Navy, Marine and Air Force personnel participating in Yama Sakura 55, along with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime services. Yama Sakura is a bilateral U.S.-Japan, computerized command post exercise designed to better the defense of Japan, and to protect each country’s interests throughout East Asia. Many actually started arriving setting up operations about three weeks prior to the exercise starting. This year’s exercise marks the 27th year Japan and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. YS55, which officially began Dec. 7, with a ceremony on the grounds of the JGSDF Transportation School, runs until Dec. 14. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry) (Photo Credit: Maj. John H. Alderman IV) VIEW ORIGINAL
Lieutenant Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon, commander U.S. Army Pacific, makes a point during the morning brief he and Lt. Gen. Kazushi Izumi, commander Japan Ground Self Defense Force Eastern Army receive each day at USARPAC Operations Command Post on bilateral training exercise Yama Sakura 55. This year’s exercise, which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 14, marks the 27th year Japan and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. This also is the first time USARPAC has taken on the role of being the operational command post. Yama Sakura is an annual bilateral, computer-based command post exercise conducted by the United States and Japan. This year, more than 1,000 Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine personnel are here interacting with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime self defense forces. Yama Sakura is intended to improve combat readiness of both forces, while continuing to improve security relations between the two nations. Camp Asaka, 12 miles west of Tokyo, is headquarters for the JGSDF’s Eastern Army, and it’s the main defense-force hub for Tokyo and 10 surrounding prefectures. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry)
5 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Lieutenant Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon, commander U.S. Army Pacific, makes a point during the morning brief he and Lt. Gen. Kazushi Izumi, commander Japan Ground Self Defense Force Eastern Army receive each day at USARPAC Operations Command Post on bilateral training exercise Yama Sakura 55. This year’s exercise, which runs from Nov. 30 to Dec. 14, marks the 27th year Japan and American forces have tested their ability to work together and their capability to defend the Japanese islands. This also is the first time USARPAC has taken on the role of being the operational command post. Yama Sakura is an annual bilateral, computer-based command post exercise conducted by the United States and Japan. This year, more than 1,000 Army, Air Force, Navy and Marine personnel are here interacting with their counterparts from the Japan ground, air and maritime self defense forces. Yama Sakura is intended to improve combat readiness of both forces, while continuing to improve security relations between the two nations. Camp Asaka, 12 miles west of Tokyo, is headquarters for the JGSDF’s Eastern Army, and it’s the main defense-force hub for Tokyo and 10 surrounding prefectures. (U.S. Army photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry) (Photo Credit: Maj. John H. Alderman IV) VIEW ORIGINAL
Members of the current operations battle desk track ongoing operations during Yama Sakura 55.
6 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Members of the current operations battle desk track ongoing operations during Yama Sakura 55. (Photo Credit: Photo by COIC photos By Sgt. 1st Class Jason Shepherd) VIEW ORIGINAL
Lt. Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon, U.S. Army, Pacific commander, and Japan Lt. Gen. Kazushi Izumi, commander Japan Ground Self Defense Force Eastern Army, salute the colors during the playing of their nation's national anthems at the opening ceremony for Yama Sakura 55, Dec. 7, 2008, on the grounds of the JGSDF Transportation School.
7 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – Lt. Gen. Benjamin R. Mixon, U.S. Army, Pacific commander, and Japan Lt. Gen. Kazushi Izumi, commander Japan Ground Self Defense Force Eastern Army, salute the colors during the playing of their nation's national anthems at the opening ceremony for Yama Sakura 55, Dec. 7, 2008, on the grounds of the JGSDF Transportation School. (Photo Credit: Photo by Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry) VIEW ORIGINAL
General Mixon and General Izumi await the presentation of the Colors.
8 / 8 Show Caption + Hide Caption – General Mixon and General Izumi await the presentation of the Colors. (Photo Credit: Sgt. 1st Class Roy Henry) VIEW ORIGINAL