Central Readiness Force

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Central Readiness Force
JGSDF Central Readiness Force.svg
Official Central Readiness Force insignia
Active March 28, 2007 – present
Country Japan Japan
Branch Flag of JSDF.svg Japan Ground Self-Defense Force
Type Rapid Reaction Force
Role Direct Action
Unconventional Warfare
Anti-NBC Warfare
Aerial Transportation
Military Training Units
Size ~ 4,500 personnel
Part of Japan Ground Self-Defense Force
Garrison/HQ Camp Zama, Sagamihara, Kanagawa Prefecture
Nickname CRF
Engagements United Nations Mission in Nepal
United Nations Integrated Mission in East Timor
United Nations Disengagement Observer Force Zone
United Nations Stabilisation Mission in Haiti
Deployment Airforce for Counter-Piracy Enforcement
Lt. Gen. Hiromichi Kawamata
Josho Yamaguchi

The Central Readiness Force (中央即応集団 Chūō Sokuō Shūdan?) was recently established on March 28, 2007, following the upgrading of the Japanese Defense Ministry from the former Japanese Defense Agency.[1] Formation in Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (JGSDF) Camp Asaka in Nerima, Tokyo, the unit has the capability of responding to any situation in either Japanese or foreign soil. The unit can also be Japan's response to any combat operations in further peacekeeping missions as a rapid reaction force[2] as a part of the Japanese government's National Defense Program Guidelines over the need to improve the JGSDF's capabilities to deal with new defense issues such as foreign peacekeeping operations and anti-terrorist operations.[2] March 2009, Base transfer in Camp Zama,in Sagamihara, Kanagawa Prefecture.

The CRF had a formal ceremony in the same base on March 31, 2007. Japanese Defense Minister Fumio Kyuma was the guest of honour in formally inaugurating the force. Lieutenant General Josho Yamaguchi (山口淨秀 陸将?, Yamaguchi Josho Rikushō) is the first CRF commanding officer.[2] The current commander of the CRF is Lt. Gen. Masahiro Hidaka, appointed on July 26, 2012.


Formed on March 28, 2007, the CRF has consolidated the 1st Airborne Brigade, the 1st Helicopter Brigade, the Japanese Special Operations Group and the 101st NBC Protection Unit into a single force meant to conduct operations in domestic and foreign soil.[2][3] On March 31, 2007, the Central Readiness Force had held its formal ceremony at the JGSDF's Camp Asaka in Nerima, Tokyo, which included guests such as Fumio Kyuma and Josho Yamaguchi, the former presiding over the formal establishment of the CRF.[3]

The CRF went to be deployed in its first civil disaster mission to quell wildfires in the forests of the Yamanashi Prefecture on April 29, 2007 with the 1st Helicopter Brigade being deployed after its integration to the force.[4] The CRF had conducted a military exercise on October 31, 2007 with its subordinate units participating in a wider range of scenarios from anti-NBC cleanup to personnel transportation and evacuation.

6 officers from the CRF were deployed to Nepal as part of the UNMIS mission on March 30, 2007 as part of their first CRF peacekeeping mission.[5][6][7] A CRF officer deployed to Nepal as part of the UNMIN was awarded by UN peacekeeping officers for completing his duties to monitor the ceasefire between the Nepalese government and Maoist rebels.[8] The officers had returned on March 18, 2008.[9] 4 CRF officers under the UNDOF's transport unit were deployed to France as Japanese representatives on July 14, 2008 for its annual Bastille Day Military Parade celebration.[10] The CRF was deployed to assist in the aftermath of the Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami in humanitarian relief efforts, as well as to combat radiation problems at the Fukushima nuclear power plant.[11][12]

Command Group[edit]

Position Name (Japanese) Rank Day of Appointment Previous Position
Commanding General Hiromichi Kawamata (川又弘道) Lieutenant General August 5, 2014 Commander of the 4th Division
Vice Commanding General Taizō Horii (堀井泰造) Major General August 22, 2013 Staff of the Ground Staff Office
Mitsuhiko Horikiri (堀切光彦) August 5, 2014 Inspector General of the Inspector General's Office of Legal Compliance
Chief of Staff Yoshihiko Isaki (伊崎義彦) Colonel August 22, 2013 Commander of the International Peace Cooperation Activities Training Unit
Vice Chief of Staff Katsuya Takagi (髙木勝也) March 23, 2014 Staff of the Central Readiness Force
Takashi Kanno (菅野隆) April 1, 2013 Commander of the 35th Infantry Regiment


The structure of the CRF has been created with the following established for its headquarters:

Chain of command[edit]

  • Commander (Lieutenant General)
    • Deputy Commander for Domestic Operations (Major General)
    • Deputy Commander for International Operations (Major General)
  • Chief of Staff (Colonel)
  • Vice Chief of Staff (2 officers with rank of Colonel)


  • Personnel
  • Intelligence
  • Defense Plans & Operations
  • Logistics
  • Administration
  • Accounting
  • Communications
  • National Welfare


  • Reporting Officer
  • Army Surgeon
  • Inspector
  • Law Officer
  • Staff Manager
  • Adjutant


The following is the current formation of the CRF as 2011.[13]


The following are represented in the insignia and patch of the Central Readiness Force:

CRF insignia[edit]

The official insignia of the Central Readiness Force.
Japanese Archipelago and Red Circle surrounding it – CRF's mandate to operate in Japanese soil.[14]
Laurel – Hope for a successful mission.[14]
Purple Shadow – CRF's joint cooperation with the Japanese Ground Self-Defense Forces, the Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Forces and the Japanese Air Self-Defense Forces.[14]

The insignia symbolizes the CRF's mandate to operate in Japanese soil.[14]

CRF patch[edit]

The official patch of the Central Readiness Force.
Globe – CRF's mandate to operate anywhere around the world.[14]
Cherry Blossoms – CRF's commanding officer.[14]
Red CircleJapan.[14]

The patch symbolizes the CRF's mandate to operate in foreign territory as a representative of Japan in Peacekeeping missions.[14]

Future plan[edit]

Under future plans to unify cooperation between Japan and the United States, the Central Readiness Force's headquarters will eventually be transferred out to Camp Zama by the year 2012.[15][16] This would be done for the US military and the JSDF to operate with improved interoperability.[17]


External links[edit]