National Police Reserve

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National Police Reserve (NPR)
NPR insignia.
Active 10 August 1950–15 October 1952
Country  Japan
Role Paramilitary
Police Force
Size 75,000
Part of Prime Minister's Office
Garrison/HQ Camp Etchūjima, Kōtō, Tokyo
Senior Superintendent Keizō Hayashi[1]

The National Police Reserve (警察予備隊, Keisatsu Yobitai), or NPR, was a lightly armed national police force established in August 1950 during the Allied occupation of Japan.[2]. In October 1952 it was expanded to 110,000 men and renamed as the National Safety Force. On July 1, 1954 it was reorganized as the Japan Self Defense Forces.


General Group Headquarters of the NPR

On the outbreak of the Korean War, many units of the United States Armed Forces stationed in Japan were transferred to South Korea, and Japan was perceived as lacking defenses.[3][4][2] Encouraged by the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers (GHQ), the Japanese government in 1950 authorized the establishment of NPR, consisting of 75,000 men equipped with light infantry weapons.[5][4] Personnel affairs of the NPR was taken charge of by GHQ's Government Section (GS) under Brigadier General Courtney Whitney[6] while the efforts to establish and train the force was made by Civil Affairs Section Annex (CASA) under Major General Whitfield P. Shepard.[7][1]

Given the legal status of police, the National Police Reserve was tasked with the duty to maintain public security under special conditions according to the National Police Reserve Order (Cabinet Order No. 260, 1950),[n 1] while in terms of unit formation and equipment, it was a de facto military force modeled after the United States Army.[10]

In October 1952, the NPR was expanded to 110,000 men and renamed as the National Safety Force (NSF).[11][12][13]

On July 1, 1954, after the 1954 Self-Defense Forces Act [Act No. 165 of 1954][14] the National Security Board was reorganized as the Defense Agency, and the National Security Force was reorganized as the Japan Ground Self-Defense Force (Army), the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (Navy) and the Japan Air Self-Defense Force (Air force).[14][15]


Rank insignia of the NPR.
NPR Regional Units (管区隊, reorganized as JGSDF divisions in 1962).
Ranks of the National Police Reserve
NPR ranks equivalent Army/JGSDF ranks[16]
in Japanese English translations
Officers Keisatsukan (警察監)[17] Senior Superintendent[1] Lieutenant General
Keisatsukanho (警察監補) Assistant Senior Superintendent Major General
Ittō keisatsusei (1等警察正)[18] Superintendent First Class[19] Colonel
Nitō keisatsusei (2等警察正)[20] Superintendent Second Class[21] Lieutenant Colonel
Keisatsushicyō (警察士長)[20]
Santō keisatsusei (3等警察正)
Senior Inspector[21]
→Superintendent Third Class
Ittō Keisatsushi (1等警察士)[20] Inspector First Class[21] Captain
Nitō Keisatsushi (2等警察士)[17] Inspector Second Class[1] First lieutenant
Santō Keisatsushi (3等警察士) Inspector Third Class Second lieutenant
Sub-officers Ittō Keisatsushiho (1等警察士補) Assistant Inspector First Class Master Sergeant
Nitō Keisatsushiho (2等警察士補) Assistant Inspector Second Class Sergeant First Class
Santō Keisatsushiho (3等警察士補) Assistant Inspector Third Class Sergeant
Patrolmen Keisachō (警査長) Senior Patrolman Leading Private
Ittō Keisa (1等警査) Patrolman First Class Private First Class
Nitō Keisa (2等警査)[22] Patrolman Second Class[23] Private


See also[edit]

Notes and references[edit]


  1. ^ According to Article 3, National Police Reserve Order (警察予備隊令第三條), the NPR took action upon appointment by the Prime Minister when it was particularly necessary to maintain public security.[8] (original text in Japanese: 警察予備隊は、治安維持のため特別の必要がある場合において、内閣総理大臣の命を受け行動するものとする。)[9]


  1. ^ a b c d Kuzuhara 2006, p. 99.
  2. ^ a b Kuzuhara 2006, p. 95.
  3. ^ 佐道明廣 2017, p. 36.
  4. ^ a b 佐道明広 2006, p. 23.
  5. ^ Kuzuhara 2006, p. 96.
  6. ^ Maeda 1995, p. 25.
  7. ^ 华丹 2014, p. 22.
  8. ^ 佐道明廣 2017, p. 37.
  9. ^ 松本昌悦, 尾崎利生 & 箭川哲 1988, p. 475.
  10. ^ 佐道明廣 2017, p. 37-38.
  11. ^ 佐道明広 2006, p. 32.
  12. ^ 华丹 2014, p. 30.
  13. ^ 赫赤, 关南 & 姜孝若 1988, p. 189.
  14. ^ a b "Japan Self-Defense Force | Defending Japan". Retrieved 2014-08-03.
  15. ^ Frank Kowalski, An Inoffensive Rearmament: The Making of the Postwar Japanese Army, Naval Institute Press, 2014, p.72
  16. ^ 防衛庁 2004, p. 266.
  17. ^ a b 葛原和三 2006, p. 83.
  18. ^ 葛原和三 2006, p. 89.
  19. ^ Kuzuhara 2006, p. 107.
  20. ^ a b c 葛原和三 2006, p. 87.
  21. ^ a b c Kuzuhara 2006, p. 104.
  22. ^ 葛原和三 2006, p. 82.
  23. ^ Kuzuhara 2006, p. 98.