Michael Jackson dropped by a US airbase during his tour of Tokyo, meeting thousands of troops and their families.
Col Robert M Waltemeyer thanked Jackson for his visit
The singer has been in the country greeting fans at parties organised in his honour.
Jackson called the assembled troops at Camp Zama "some of the most special people in the world".
"It is because of you in here today, and others who so valiantly have given their lives to protect us, that we enjoy our freedom," he told the crowd.
About 3,000 troops and family members welcomed Jackson
Jackson attended a ceremony to watch one army member being promoted, placing a pin on his uniform.
In turn he was presented with a framed certificate thanking him for his visit from Col Robert M Waltemeyer, garrison commander of Camp Zama.
During his trip to Tokyo, Jackson has attended one event where fans paid up to £1,800 to briefly meet their idol and have a photograph taken with him.
The "platinum VIP party" also saw 100 orphans and handicapped children invited along for free.
Another event was held in a nightclub where more than 1,000 fans were in attendance, but who paid significantly less to see Jackson. He did not sing at either party.