Corps Deploying The Aircraft In Japan Despite That Country's Concerns
Gen. James F. Amos, commandant of the Marine Corps, and Lt. Gen. Robert E. Schmidle Jr., deputy commandant of Marine Corps aviation, recently reinforced the safety of the MV-22B Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft in a statement and press briefing in Washington, D.C. “I am mindful that there are some who are concerned about tilt-rotor technology because of past accidents involving the aircraft, in particular our most recent mishap earlier this year in Morocco,” said Amos, in a recent statement regarding the deployment of the MV-22B Osprey to Japan. “As the commandant, I pledge to our partners, and to the Japanese people, that we will work with them to allay those concerns."
With the rise in recent concerns and attention in the media and among the Japanese community centered on the MV-22B Osprey deployment to Japan, the Corps’ leadership wanted to address the issue personally. “As the senior pilot on active duty today in the United States military, I personally attest that there is no more definitive way to strengthen the aviation capability of our allied forces than to forward deploy these remarkably capable aircraft to the Asia-Pacific region as soon as possible,” stated Amos.
Basing the MV-22B Osprey in Japan will significantly strengthen III Marine Expeditionary Force’s ability to provide for the defense of Japan, perform humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations, and fulfill other alliance roles. With the accident investigation now complete and the information shared with the government of Japan, the Marine Corps remains committed to its deployment and to the alliance. “As our two governments work through the details of basing the MV-22B, I remain confident in the aircraft’s safety and capabilities and the significant advantages its deployment will bring to the Japanese and American people,” stated Amos.
“Ultimately, the investigation determined that the aircraft did not suffer from any mechanical or material failures and that there were no issues with the safety of the aircraft,” stated Schmidle. “The airplane has been proven. It’s now flown over 130,000 hours and it’s on its 13th combat deployment.”
“It’s one of the safest aircraft we have in our inventory today,” said Lt. Gen. Kenneth J. Glueck Jr., III MEF commanding general. “The Osprey’s improved capabilities with regard to range, lift and speed increase the Marine Corps’ response time in a region where we may be needed to respond to a crisis.”
(Images provided by the U.S. DoD)