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June 8-14, 2023 | Issue 18 - PACOM

Oscar Mackay, Ryan Leung, Michael Grimaldi, Jehanne Pocquet

Radhika Ramalinga Venkatachalam, Editor; Evan Beachler, Senior Editor

Chinese J-11 Fighter Jet [1]

Date: June 8, 2023

Location: Taipei, Taiwan

Parties involved: Taiwanese government; Taiwanese military; US; US government; US military; Chinese government; Chinese military; Japan; South Korea

The event: Taiwan activated its defense systems in response to 37 Chinese military aircraft flying into the island's air defense identification zone (ADIZ). J-11 and J-16 fighters and nuclear-capable H-6 bombers took part in the incursion. Taiwan used its ships and aircraft to monitor Chinese activity and activated its land-based missile systems. Taiwan’s ally, Japan, scrambled a jet fighter as a Chinese Y-9 reconnaissance aircraft flew over the Pacific Ocean. It has also protested against China as its navy and coast guard vessels entered its territorial waters.[2]

Analysis & Implications:

  • US military and diplomatic engagement with Taiwan will almost certainly lead to continued Chinese violations and incursions in Taiwan’s ADIZ, very likely prompting both China and Taiwan to increase their military and defense activities in the region. China will likely use these ADIZ violations to monitor Taiwan’s defense capabilities and response procedures, very likely enabling it to plan for a potential invasion. China will unlikely face tangible consequences from the international community for its incursions in response to US support for Taiwan, as it will likely continue to establish military influence and claim over the South China Sea.

  • The Taiwanese government will almost certainly increase diplomatic, economic, and military cooperation with its regional allies, such as Japan and South Korea, to protest Chinese incursions. Japan and the US will very unlikely participate directly in the Sino-Taiwanese confrontation, as Taipei will likely seek cooperation through arms sales, information sharing, and military exchange programs. Taiwan will very likely increase its presence in regional and international trade, notably in its semiconductor industry, to garner support from its allies.

Date: June 12, 2023

Location: Tokyo, Japan

Parties involved: Japan; Japan’s Defense Ministry; Japan’s Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF); North Korea; North Korean government; US; South Korea

The event: Japan extended an order authorizing the destruction of any North Korean ballistic missile, rocket, or debris that threatened the country’s territory. This decision came after North Korea announced the satellite launch window expiration on Sunday. Japan’s Defense Ministry added that the order would remain in effect “for the time being” as North Korea demonstrated intent to launch another military reconnaissance satellite. Japan is taking precautionary measures to use PATRIOT Advanced Capability-3 (PAC-3) ground-based missile-defense systems and JMSDF Aegis destroyers. South Korea and the US have condemned North Korea’s attempted satellite launch, perceiving it as a strategy to advance its missile program.[3]

Analysis & Implications:

  • Japan will very likely increase diplomatic ties with its allies, specifically the US, and enhance naval defense capabilities in the next few years, very likely to protect itself from North Korea’s improving missile technology, such as hypersonic weapons. Japan’s strengthened defense capabilities will likely involve US cooperation, likely to aid the JMSDF in modernizing its missile defense systems, such as the Aegis destroyers and PAC-3 systems. The US’ continued presence in the region will likely motivate North Korea to pursue its ICBM tests, likely attempting to defeat emerging regional defense mechanisms while hindering diplomatic ties between North Korea and Japan.

  • The North Korean government is very likely to test Japan’s recent commitment to shoot down North Korean missiles through the continued launch of satellites and missiles, very likely to see if Japan will follow through. North Korean officials are very likely to see this policy change from Japan as a challenge and are unlikely to step back, instead using it to assess American and Japanese missile defense systems. North Korea will likely continue to learn valuable information about Japanese and American defense capabilities at relatively low cost. There is an almost even chance that North Korea could develop weapons that counter missile defense systems and pose a more significant threat to their neighbors.


[1]Chinese J-11 Fighter Jet” by Gary Todd licensed under CC0

[3] Japan extends order to destroy North Korea rocket or debris, The Japan Times, June 2023,



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