U.S. Navy eases nighttime drinking restrictions for personnel in Japan

TOKYO —

The U.S. Navy on Wednesday eased restrictions on drinking by its personnel throughout Japan, allowing sailors to drink at home after 10 p.m..

However, Stars & Stripes newspaper reported that sailors are still prohibited from drinking alcohol outside their private residences or off-base between 10 p.m. and 8 a.m., regardless of leave or liberty status. All service members in Japan also have to adhere to an 11 p.m.- 5 a.m. curfew imposed after an Okinawa woman was allegedly raped by two sailors in October, the paper reported.

The U.S. military has been under intense pressure to take action following a series of alcohol-related incidents involving U.S. service members in Okinawa, Yokohama, Sasebo and elsewhere in October and November.

Last month, U.S. forces on Okinawa began late-night patrols in Naha during curfew hours. The patrols include plain-clothes service members from all branches who walk the streets of the city between 11 p.m. and 5:30 a.m. Similar teams already patrol areas around major bases on the island.

Japan Today

  • -5

    some14some

    yet another good news after NK's successful rocket launch !

  • 9

    Ms. Alexander

    So why is this in the "Crime" section??? Is easing military drinking in homes a crime??

    • Moderator

      It is a crime-prevention measure.

  • 8

    Jeff Ogrisseg

    Let's be real here, "crime prevention" is impossible.

  • 5

    Loki520

    It wasn't crime prevention. It was mass punishment.

  • 5

    Samuel Dinter

    Mass punishment agreed. Zero crime is unrealistic. I think public media involvement in next criminal case. Publicize the accusers pain and stress.

  • 3

    Samuel Dinter

    I would like to add that publicizing the punishment more and a louder message of "you are not immune" and "just cuz your overseas" isn't an excuse to be pigs.

  • -1

    Disillusioned

    Wow! I reckon a lot of the clubs in Roppongi are feeling the pinch. I might have to venture back there now that it is not full of jar heads anymore.

  • 4

    Matthew Simon

    Realistically All this did was re legalize what people were already doing. They had no way of enforcing what people were doing in their homes anyways.

  • 1

    Fadamor

    Realistically All this did was re legalize what people were already doing. They had no way of enforcing what people were doing in their homes anyways.

    For the most part true, but if there WAS an incident in a serviceman's home and he's found to be drunk after hours, it would be one more way for the military to gig him. Other than that, this particular part of the drinking rules was not really enforceable.

  • 2

    Stephen Jez

    I agree with what Matthew Simon says. They just made it ok for people to do what they were probably already doing. Not that a "no drinking at home" ban is anything new to the military. You're technically not supposed to drink 8 hours before duty or during exercises.

  • -4

    YuriOtani

    Do not think this will hurt anything. People who are inclined to rape usually do not worry about breaking the rules. Still the troops have to be in quarters before 11pm.

  • 2

    Mikune Hara

    In what part of this article you aunderstood that its about 0 crime? Crime prevention doesnt mean that they will stop all the crime atleast they are showing some action. And besides in Military there is no word " I " its always "we" if one person messes up everyone pays simple.

  • 0

    Vernie Jefferies

    Did they really expect those guys to stop drinking at home?

  • 1

    gokai_wo_maneku

    Why do they drink so much? They sound like us Japanese salary men. Hopeless meaningless lives?

  • 0

    gjn48kawaii

    Its not like any of them obeyed the rules anyways. See you in Yokohama.

  • 0

    Leonard Carlson

    Speaking from experience... Being put on this order before in the past I can say I never drank when ordered not to. This was a Navy order so it doesn't apply to me being in the Air Force. However, I will say if placed on this order in the future I wouldn't drink because of the off chance I got recalled or something happened.

    I'm guessing 98.99% of the individuals followed the order. 1% didn't follow the order. .01% got caught not following the order. Keep in mind that is just a guess and it could be more or less...

  • 0

    darknuts

    Why do they drink so much? They sound like us Japanese salary men. Hopeless meaningless lives?

    They dont drink anymore or less than the average japanese that go to the clubs. I cant count how many japanese ive seen stumbling down the street or throwing up on the train because theyve had too much to drink.

  • -2

    Tiger_In_The_Hermitage

    Crime prevention is possible, just ask the US military to go back to the States. End of story.

  • 0

    gokai_wo_maneku

    darknuts, thank you for proving my point.

  • -2

    Fadamor

    Crime prevention is possible, just ask the US military to go back to the States. End of story.

    Sure, because it's only the U.S. military that causes crime, right? I have an alternate way to prevent crime: bulldoze evey building within twenty miles of a military base. The crime rate outside of the base would drop to 0% in a heartbeat! That's the REAL "End of story".

  • 0

    USNinJapan2

    The U.S. military has been under intense pressure to take action following a series of alcohol-related incidents involving U.S. service members in Okinawa, Yokohama, Sasebo and elsewhere in October and November.

    And now the tide has turned and it's the bases' host city governments that are under increasing pressure from local chambers of commerce to get the U.S. military to ease curfew and other restrictions. Looks like the business community is the only one with enough sense to understand that zero-incidents is not a realistic or attainable goal and that drastic restrictions like curfews is ultimately undesirable and counterproductive for both sides.

  • 0

    ExNavy

    gokaiwomanekuDEC. 13, 2012 - 08:18AM JST Why do they drink so much? They sound like us Japanese salary men. Hopeless meaningless lives?

    Thousands of miles from home & family in a strange land, not always by direct choice (they decided to join the military, but they may not have chosen Japan). Then you have the fact that Bases always seem to sprout bar districts directly around them. It becomes something of a cycle. Another reason is stress. Some of them are young and like to 'party', the glamour of alcohol has yet to wear off for them. This is helped by the fact that the Japanese drinking age is 20, it's 21 in the States, and most Japanese bartenders don't check IDs for foreigners, if they do, they don't always know what to look for, so you get a lot of underage drinking as well.

    In the end, it basically boils down to the reasons anyone really drinks, though.

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