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Japan's latest security threat: its declining birthrate

As Self-Defense Forces miss recruitment targets, they warm to female applicants

The SDF is promoting the recruitment of women to cope with personnel shortfalls. This year, five women became the SDF's first female members of a submarine crew.   © Kyodo

TOKYO -- On Oct. 30, the ruling Liberal Democratic Party's national defense parliamentary group presented a big request to Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi. It wanted Kishi to add two Aegis destroyers to the Maritime Self-Defense Force.

It was a big ask because Japan's Self-Defense Forces have fallen on hard times.

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