Western Pacific SONG Cooperation
By Lieutenant Commander Shusuke Kitaguchi, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force
The Western Pacific Naval Symposium is committed to enhancing mutual understanding between nations of the region.1 To this end, in October 2008 the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force (JMSDF) Staff College hosted a Seminar for Officers of the Next Generation (SONG), the eighth of its kind. This latest SONG was held in Tokyo, attended by lieutenants and lieutenant commanders from Australia, Bangladesh, Brunei, Cambodia, Canada, Chile, China, France, India, Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Malaysia, Mexico, Philippines, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Peru, Singapore, Thailand, Tonga, and the United States. (Bangladesh, Canada, Chile, and India are observers in the Symposium.) Representatives were students in their native naval staff colleges or the equivalent levels.