Alliance Symposium: Deployment of the MV-22 Osprey to Okinawa

Aug. 30 - The Japanese Ministry of Defense sponsored a public symposium Aug. 29 on the U.S.-Japan Alliance and the deployment of the MV-22 Osprey to Okinawa. U.S. panelists at the symposium included Mr. Rob Luke, the Political Minister-Counselor at the U.S. Embassy in Tokyo, and Colonel Christopher Seymour, the Commander of Marine Aircraft Group 26 in North Carolina. The symposium was live-streamed, and the video can be viewed online here.

In his prepared remarks, Mr. Luke stated: "In order to maintain deterrence and uphold our firm commitment to the Alliance in a constantly changing regional security environment, the United States is committed to deepening our bilateral security ties, including by deploying the most capable and technologically advanced assets to Japan. Introduction of the MV-22 Osprey into Japan will allow the U.S. to provide significantly improved capabilities in terms of range, lift, and speed. Whether responding to a security threat or a humanitarian crisis such as the March 11 earthquake, the MV-22 Osprey will fly faster, farther, and carry more than the CH-46 helicopter it will replace. I am confident in the aircraft’s safety and I am convinced that its deployment will contribute to the defense and security of Japan, and to regional peace and stability. The Osprey will also significantly enhance our ability to respond quickly to humanitarian crises throughout the region."

Colonel Seymour added, "I could quote a lot of safety statistics and technical data to describe the Osprey's safety record, but I would rather just tell you in my own words - having been fortunate enough to be part of this program for the better part of my career, over 15 years with the Osprey - that it is a magnificent airplane. It is 21st-century technology. It is without a doubt the best that the aviation industry in the United States has produced for a very long time."