Global SITREP for Friday, 15 March 2024 – Forward Observer

Global SITREP for Friday, 15 March 2024

Good morning, and welcome to the Global Situation Report for Friday, 15 March 2024.

  1. PHILIPPINES ALLOWING REBELS TO JOIN ARMY: The Philippines Army spokesman announced yesterday that former Islamic and communist rebels seeking to reintegrate into society are “most welcome” in the Philippine Army after a vetting process.

Why It Matters: While there are risks, reintegration of former rebels will aid the Philippines’ guerrilla warfare capabilities, which could be used during an armed conflict with China. – J.V.

  1. JAPAN TO OFFICIALLY EXPORT LETHAL MILITARY WEAPONS: Japan’s government approved selling and exporting next-generation fighter jets that they are developing with the U.K. and Italy this morning.
  • Japan will limit its potential export customers to Australia, Britain, France, Germany, India, Indonesia, Italy, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, Sweden, Thailand, the United Arab Emirates, the United States and Vietnam, all of whom have a defense equipment transfer pact with Japan.
  • Japan, the U.K., and Italy do not expect to finish the jet until 2035, but the Japanese think foreign interest and investment may speed up the process.

Why It Matters: Opening up the law to exports of any lethal weapons is a sign of significant change for Japanese weapons exports and foreign policy. Additionally, six of the potential customers are members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN), which the West was courting this week with foreign direct investment. – J.V.

  1. HOUTHIS TO EXPAND MILITARY OPERATIONS: Houthi spokesman Mohammed Ali al-Houthi announced that the Houthi government is willing to cooperate with China, Russia, or any Arab or Muslim nation to exchange lessons learned from their engagements with “the common [enemy].”
  • Abdulmalek al-Houthi, the leader of the Houthis, also announced that Houthis would expand their targeting to Israel-linked ships in the Indian Ocean headed around Africa.

Why It Matters: The Houthis are the most experienced military in the world with anti-ship missiles. Exporting the lessons learned could greatly increase U.S. adversary effectiveness and increase maritime commerce chokepoint restrictions. – J.V.

THAT’S A WRAP: This does it for today’s edition. Thank you for reading. If you know folks who would also like to receive this email, would you please forward it to them? We appreciate you spreading the word. – M.S.

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