Protesters block delivery of U.S. base environment report to Okinawa government

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  • 0

    Elbuda Mexicano

    Why don't these protestors take their protest over to the CHINESE embassy?? If these people think China does not want to take over Okinawa, they better stay out of that hot sun it may burn their braincells and keep them from thinking correctly, kick out the the US Marines and say hello, NIHAO to the NPLA, the Chinese National People's Liberation Army??

  • -1

    Gurukun

    They say another part of Japan should take the base,

    Exactly!

    Elbuda, why must people like you always relate the Futenma Issue to all the bases on Okinawa? I take it that you do not live on the island? Many Okinawans are pro-base, however, the island has shouldered more than half of the military stationed in Japan. All the majority wants is a FEW of the bases to be spread out throughout the country.

  • 0

    almostshat

    Er, why not deliver the report via the rear entrance. Might be easier to slip in via the back passage, as the actress said to the bishop. Or, revolutionary thought this, send it by email. As always, farcical news in this farcical country.

  • 2

    YuriOtani

    Elbuda Mexicano, suppose you think they should shut up and do what their "betters" want? Gurukun, am not anti base but the new airfield should not be built. It will destroy some amazing coral reefs. The "fun" never end! Am positive the Governor will not sign the permit. Also did you notice the police did not disrupt the protestors?

  • 5

    Speed

    Why hasn't other parts of Japan been considered? Kyushu is actually closer to the Korean Peninsula/Beijing than Okinawa. There's also a lot more vacant area to put in a new base. Even Tottori, Shimane, or Shikoku for that matter.

    Honestly, why aren't these options being seriously considered due to the vehement opposition to it being relocated to another part of Okinawa?

  • 1

    Gurukun

    Yuri, Speed,

    Thank You!!

  • 1

    2020hindsights

    It's only a report. So if there will be a lot of impact or not; why not wait for the report to let us know. Let the facts come out.

  • -1

    LouReed

    The US should close all the bases in Japan as we cant afford them, they aren't needed and Japan needs to take more of a leadership role in providing security in Asia.

  • 0

    Del Ihle

    Okinawa is overburdened with our bases. Other Prefectures should take on more of the responsibility of housing US bases. I think this is more of an issue of the Japanese government unwillingness to recognize heavy load Okinawa has been forced to accept. Other Prefectures should participate as well. US bases are needed - that's not the question. But Okinawa - Japan's smallest Prefecture - is supporting 80% of our military, and have done so since the end of WWII.

    In my opinion, too many US military assets are concentrated on the very small island (Okinawa). I would think military commanders would also want better distribution of their resources. 30 miles is not very good separation.

    Additionally, I think the population of Okinawa will no longer stand for moving Futenma to Henoko. This is not an issue between Okinawans and Americans - it is an issue between Okinawans and their central government.

  • -3

    Harry_Gatto

    Lots of empty space in Fukushima, infrastructure is in place, needs some refurbishment.

  • 0

    borscht

    There are more US troops in Okinawa than Iraq, where the US just finished fighting Bush War 2. If the US wants to stabilize a region, shouldn't it be closer to their oil teat?

  • -1

    Elvensilvan

    If the national government really wants Okinawa to keep hosting most of the US bases, then I think that the government should also push some more stringent laws regarding crimes and accidents involving servicemen.

  • 1

    gyouza

    Isn't it a history issue? The US controlled Okinawa until 1972 and never really left - hence they believe they ned to still be there as opposed to anywhere else. The other issue is that Okinawa is the closest point to Taiwan, which is the subject of a lot of sabre rattling from mainland China. The obvious thing to do would be to move the bases there, but that would probably start WWIII, with China declaring an invasion on its land!

    I don't think there is an easy answer which is why Ishihara is very cleverly criticising the governemnt for their actions whilst not actually saying what he would do instead.

    I do feel sorry for Okinawans, as they had their hopes raised by Hatoyama in his rather foolish and naive statement that the base would be relocated outside the prefecture - WITHOUT actually deciding where.

  • 0

    CrazyJoe

    The US Forces are here to stay on Okinawa and mainland Japan. Do you seriously think that the protesters are really concerned about a marine "mammal"? They are using the dugong just as an excuse.

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    "They say another part of Japan should take the base, which currently sits in a crowded urban area of the island, near dozens of schools and hospitals."

    Ah, so it's not at all about environmental impact or the other mumbo-jumbo these terrorists claim it's about, it's simply about even-Stephen. They have blocked official mail from being delivered by military given permission to exist on the land and protecting them. Next time they should be arrested for interfering in official matters. Sure, it might make martyrs of them if these people had any clue about what they were doing, but they don't. They don't want the base relocated within Okinawa? fine... keep it where it is now and see how much they complain.

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    I guess it's been a few days since reports of China upping it's military surfaced, as these people often conveniently forget.

  • 2

    smithinjapan

    Speed: " Kyushu is actually closer to the Korean Peninsula/Beijing than Okinawa."

    Okinawa is more strategic, given it's proximity to both the Koreas as well as China, and more importantly Taiwan. China poses the biggest threat, as Okinawans seem to forget on a daily basis until a Chinese sub meanders by, and the US has troops in SK already. They also have bases in Sasebo in Nagasaki, etc.

    YuriOtani: "Elbuda Mexicano, suppose you think they should shut up and do what their "betters" want?"

    No, they should simply shut up and obey the laws of their land. And yes, the fact that police did nothing was not lost on most of us, but they won't do anything elsewhere when the right-wingers and nationalists 'protest', so how is this any different?

  • 0

    Tatanka

    Please Ron Paul get the nomination and close all the bases in Japan, Korea, etc.

  • 4

    Newsman

    Let's look at some hard truths for a moment. You may not be happy with my answers, but even if they are cold they are nevertheless logical.

    The U.S. maintains several ironclad commitments in the Pacific region, not just with Japan. South Korea and Taiwan also have defense agreements with the U.S., and for political reasons the U.S. has no military presence in Taiwan. Go look at a globe: The place most convenient to these three East Asian allies is Okinawa. The Philippines, another U.S. ally, is also marginally closer to Okinawa than it is to Guam.

    Keeping the majority of U.S. forces in Okinawa means keeping more Japanese people safe overall. China is improving its first-strike capability, should a political decision be made to retake Taiwan by force. That force could be equally aimed at U.S. forces. Spread U.S. forces more equitably around Japan and you increase the overall number of Japanese casualties, should a first strike against U.S. forces in Japan take place. Please note that I am NOT saying Okinawan lives are less valuable than other Japanese lives. I am simply saying more lives overall are spared with the current arrangement.

    The U.S. has decided that is in its own interest to provide a counterweight to Chinese power in East Asia. Other nations in the region, including not only the forementioned countries but also Vietnam, Singapore, Myanmar, Indonesia, and even Australia, are to varying degrees happy with an American presence in the region.

    Frankly, what Japan will to do from now on is still anyone's guess. The government is still hedging its bets, trying to have things both ways, courting China while still pledging a strong relationship with the U.S. My personal opinion is that, caught between three superpowers (U.S., Russia, and China), Japan's independence is best preserved by allying itself with the nation that is geographically farthest from it. Others may disagree. Regardless, it is obvious that the DPJ has not settled on a cohesive foreign policy; the viewpoints of its members range from China hawks like Maehara and supporters of the existing U.S.-Japan framework like Kan, to China doves like Hatoyama and Okada. (And I will repeat my belief that, if your family has substantial business interests in China like Okada's does, you should not be allowed anywhere near the foreign ministry portfolio.)

    Now where does this leave the people of Okinawa? In an awful position on such a beautiful island. Were I a young Okinawan, I probably would be mad, too. But I thought people should take a moment to think exactly why things are the way they are. They have not happened just because the U.S. thought it would be fun to put bases on the other side of the world. Of course the U.S. does things in its own interest. So does Japan, and every other country. It's up to the Japanese to decide if the benefits of the U.S. presence outweighs the costs.

  • 1

    Star-viking

    "Activists were seen grabbing the shoulder of a man who got out of the vehicle and pushing him against the van. Twice the driver tried to take his vehicle through the gates of the building, but was prevented before giving up and driving off."

    “It is outrageous that the government mailed the paper just because they feared their officials would be blocked,” one of the protesters told TBS. “They are wrong if they think they can get away with this.”

    Feared their officials would be blocked? Given the assault on the van driver I think their fears were justified. These protesters seem hypocritical.

  • -3

    Gurukun

    Okinawa is more strategic, given it's proximity to both the Koreas as well as China, and more importantly Taiwan.

    You know, I get tired of hearing this. Being prior military, we could deploy to anywhere in the world in a matter of hours. With todays technology, I'm sure that this is still the same, or if not, even better. But still, like all the others, these threads always elude to the "all the basess" issue.

    Ah, so it's not at all about environmental impact or the other mumbo-jumbo these terrorists claim it's about, it's simply about even-Stephen. They have blocked official mail from being delivered by military given permission to exist on the land and protecting them.

    smithinjapan, first, let's stop the name calling. I do not regard myself, or the Okinawan people as a terrorist. We do not blow ourselves up and take people from other countires hostage. Also, not many deny the fact the the military is protecting us. But when you say 'us', I know that you mean Japan. If the military is here to protect "us", then the military presence should be spread throughout "us",

  • 1

    Yubaru

    Regardless of what some posters may write here there are plenty of people on both sides of this issue. The people who are against the base are more vocal and active in voicing their opinions.

    The reality of the matter is the island does need the bases, but NOT FUTENMA in it's current location. It is coming close to being a moot point as several US Congress-critters are pushing the defense dept to moving the activities of Futenma to Kadena and moving some of the fixed wing assets on Kadena to other bases in mainland.

    Other parts of the country have been looked at as replacements for Futenma but all were axed due to local opposition. No one wants it in mainland, but they want it to stay on Okinawa. So the mainlander's and Kasumigaseki types listen with half an ear to the Okinawan people, wait them out, bribe them with more money, make minor tweaks to the SOFA, and the status quo stays on.

  • 2

    smithinjapan

    Gurukun: " We do not blow ourselves up and take people from other countires hostage."

    And yet if, say, a protestor blocks, say, a Japanese ship from whaling in a sanctuary people have no qualms about calling those protestors 'terrorists' at all, do they? Not only did these people interfere with matters of state, they physically assaulted the person driving the vehicle. Yes, they are terrorists -- for they terrorized the man in the aforementioned situation.

    "If the military is here to protect "us", then the military presence should be spread throughout "us","

    Sure, they could assemble a few fighters hundreds of kilometers apart in a matter of hours, of course, but response time to any attempted or successful, god forbid, first strike would be critical. So, once again, tired of the facts as you are, location is critical, and Okinawa the most strategic.

    Newsman said it better, though: "The U.S. maintains several ironclad commitments in the Pacific region, not just with Japan. South Korea and Taiwan also have defense agreements with the U.S., and for political reasons the U.S. has no military presence in Taiwan. Go look at a globe: The place most convenient to these three East Asian allies is Okinawa. The Philippines, another U.S. ally, is also marginally closer to Okinawa than it is to Guam."

    I'm sorry you don't like the facts, Gurukun, but them's the breaks, as they say.

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    Del: "Other Prefectures should take on more of the responsibility of housing US bases."

    Once again we have people trying to trump practicality and common sense with emotion. It's like stating "people in Fukushima are sad, so we should spread radioactive debris throughout the nation to make them feel better (and give them a panda!) -- why should Fukushima house it all?"

    This kind of 'logic' will be part of why Japan self-destructs.

  • -2

    Yubaru

    smith, a more even distribution of bases should have been done a long time ago. People seem to forget that there are a lot of other US military bases in Japan. BUT they are not even close to being as intrusive as they are in Okinawa.

    Your analogy is not fair considering that Fukushima only happened earlier this year and the bases have been here for over 60. Come back with that analogy 60 years from now and see how I would respond.

  • 2

    yosun

    There is another way they can send to reports- Email.

  • 1

    smithinjapan

    Yubaru: "BUT they are not even close to being as intrusive as they are in Okinawa."

    The people BUILT their residences around the bases, not vice-versa, so you can hardly call them 'intrusive' and then speak of 'unfair' comments, can you?

    "Your analogy is not fair considering that Fukushima only happened earlier this year and the bases have been here for over 60."

    The sentiment is the same, and not limited to arguments about Fukushima and Okinawa, hence my comment and the one example. Just because Okinawans have 'suffered' (and let's not fail to acknowledge the MANY who have profited and made their lives off the bases!) longer than the people in Fukushima, that doesn't eliminate the lack of common sense and practicality of suggesting people 'share' a burden to make the suffering feel better.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    The people BUILT their residences around the bases, not vice-versa, so you can hardly call them 'intrusive' and then speak of 'unfair' comments, can you?

    Have you ever been here? There aren't a whole lot of other choices available. Also what has to be taken into consideration as well is the fact that the people who owned land around the bases did not have the choice of the base being built in literally their own back yard.

    Sure it was mostly farm land around the bases when they were appropriated for use by the US Military, so where do you expect the people to build their homes? Buy land somewhere else? It's called development.

    Your comment here comes across (rather arrogant) as if you want(ed) to see the Okinawan people stay poor farmers.

    doesn't eliminate the lack of common sense and practicality of suggesting people 'share' a burden to make the suffering feel better.

    Your sentiment is off base here, the suggestion of sharing the burden is the responsibility of all of Japan to share in it's defense, (currently) under the military treaties and agreements made between Japan and the US. It isnt sharing a suffering, although the press and mass media like to make it sound like that. The Okinawan people are a proud people and they aren't "suffering" by any means. However they do have a right as Japanese people to expect the ENTIRE country to bear the burden of it's defense.

  • -4

    realdoll

    It seems the only Okinawans that like the bases are the 1% that benefit from a GOJ job on the bases. They are being paid.

  • -1

    Gurukun

    Sure, they could assemble a few fighters hundreds of kilometers apart in a matter of hours, of course, but response time to any attempted or successful, god forbid, first strike would be critical.

    And if China or NKorea, or any other country strikes Mainland Japan? Where are most of the grounds troops coming from.? Okinawa? So does it really matter where a mojority of the miliary is. Troop movement is required no matter where or when a country is under attack.

    And yet if, say, a protestor blocks, say, a Japanese ship from whaling in a sanctuary people have no qualms about calling those protestors 'terrorists' at all, do they?

    "Do they" There's the critical phrase.. I am not part of "They"..who ever you are refering to. I don't call them terrorist. But hey, if you want to resort to name calling that's fine. I was just stating that I don't feel calling us "terrorists" justified.

    The people BUILT their residences around the bases, not vice-versa, so you can hardly call them 'intrusive' and then speak of 'unfair' comments, can you?

    Woah! Are you saying that the US owns the property around the bases as well? Can you show me where this land Futenma is built on belonging to the US 200 years ago?

    Except for the few land owners that own land (hmmm....I guess the US never owned the land in the firstpplace), who makes any profit from Futenma. If there are any, it is very few. Futenma does not have a large Japanese workforce. Also, most, if all military parts and equipment are purchased through the US.

  • 2

    Yubaru

    It seems the only Okinawans that like the bases are the 1% that benefit from a GOJ job on the bases. They are being paid.

    Don't let the media overly influence what you believe. There are literally hundreds of thousands, (Okinawa's population on the main island itself is over 1 million people) of people living here on the island that are either for the bases or totally apathetic about there being here. These are the "silent" majority, the one's who are realistic about the situation and understand that without the bases Okinawa's economy would truly suffer.

    There are going to those that pop in here and make comments about development and things that "could" be done to improve the economy without the presence of the bases yet there is yet one person that will give you hard facts on where the financing and support for these so called enterprises will come from. Nakurunaisa.......

  • -1

    Star-viking

    The US needs the bases in Okinawa because it's the most central location available for deploying in SE Asia. They need the US Marines in Okinawa because it makes sense to have the Marines near the aircraft they'll need for deployment.

    Maybe some other US Okinawan facilities could be moved elsewhere in Japan, but Futenma or Henoko are needed. If Henoko is blocked, then Futenma stays.

  • -1

    UncleBudah

    I really think that American base should move away from Okinawa let the Okinawans to their Chinese faith besides most people in Main islands of japan think that Okinawa is not japan and Okinawans think they dont belong to japan anyways,

    China please do like Russia and take over Okinawa islands

    Okinawa will not know what they have until its gone!

  • 1

    Nessie

    @yuriotani

    Also did you notice the police did not disrupt the protestors?

    I hope the protestors had approval for the protest. Otherwise the cops would be allowing a breakdown in the rule of law. And we know what a stickler you are for that, Yuri -- unless it involves Japanese breaking the law.

  • 0

    smithinjapan

    Gurukun: " I was just stating that I don't feel calling us "terrorists" justified."

    Doesn't matter if you think that, because it IS justified by definition of the word.

    Yubaru: "Don't let the media overly influence what you believe. There are literally hundreds of thousands, (Okinawa's population on the main island itself is over 1 million people) of people living here on the island that are either for the bases or totally apathetic about there being here. These are the "silent" majority, the one's who are realistic about the situation and understand that without the bases Okinawa's economy would truly suffer."

    VERY good point, but clearly lost on the emotional here. As I have said on past threads related to this matter, you only ever hear from the very few Okinawans crying in protest (whose mom and pop or grandparents decided to settle around certain military bases to make a living). Of COURSE it was 'development', and development to make money off the bases being there. That was my point.

    "However they do have a right as Japanese people to expect the ENTIRE country to bear the burden of it's defense."

    The nation DOES bear the burden -- money to pay for the troops stationed there on top of other related costs; spreading the resources around the nation won't help one iota -- heck it'll even take the number one complaint away from the few people griping about the fact their land is safe from China and other threats because of the US presence.

    I don't like the military, if you think I'm pro-military or pro-US or what have you, but the people in Okinawa are forgetting the obvious fact that the troops are needed there, and once again THERE, strategically. Reread TheNewsman's post -- he explains it better than I have.

  • 0

    Jared Norman

    smithinjapan- You need to understand that the majority of the bases in Okinawa were built using aggressive force, destroying private house (this violates both the heague treaty and the US constitution) while forcing them to live in internment camps for an extended period also a crime. As for where the marines will go, it really doesn't matter, the technology of american weapons is so advance that its only a couple of minutes for the first strike.

  • 0

    okimike67

    It really is getting old hearing the "Hague Treaty" violations drum beat, over and over and over and over....... IF this was indeed a Treaty Violation then let those violated take it up with the Hague. They wont because they cant and those of you that play the old Shimoji drum look the fools.

    Second, the Newsman's post was the most impationate and thoughtful post I have seen in a long time. THUMBS UP. Too bad it will be lost on the VOCAL MINORITY due to idiologial reasoning (or lack thereof).

  • -3

    smithinjapan

    okimike67: "Too bad it will be lost on the VOCAL MINORITY due to idiologial reasoning (or lack thereof)."

    You mean the few Okinawans complaining? If so you are absolutely correct; they'll beg for help if China comes close, but will admonish the same help two seconds later.

    Jared: "You need to understand that the majority of the bases in Okinawa were built using aggressive force...." During war time? Shortly thereafter? You're not seriously going to defend that remark given what Japan did to its neighbours, are you?

    "As for where the marines will go, it really doesn't matter, the technology of american weapons is so advance that its only a couple of minutes for the first strike."

    I'd say the technology of any nations weapons unless they are still using sticks and stones is as such, but it's not the case, unfortunately. A nuke launch is a nuke launch, to be sure, but please explain the physics of how a jet fighter reaching 黒島 from Naha takes the same amount of time as the fighter flying in from Hokkaido.

  • 1

    MaboDofuIsSpicy

    Only one above wrote it, and send by email. But it is a big file, so zip it.

    Actually why not open a web page and post it for all to see?

  • 0

    bam_boo

    @ 2020hindsights

    It's only a report. So if there will be a lot of impact or not; why not wait for the report to let us know. Let the facts come out.

    it's not 'only a report', it's an environmental assessment which was ordered by the Japanese government to fulfill the purpose of making it possible to build a base into a pristine marine environment.

    Anyone who believes such an assessment in Japan is unbiased lacks proper information about how such things work in Japan.

    The agencies and companies involved in the assessment know very well what they ought to do and they know what will happen if they submit an assessment that is against the government order... they won't ever again get an assignment in Japan.

    Some weeks ago we heard a Japanese government official involved with the assessment saying it was a rape towards the Okinawan people, and unfortunately he knew exactly what he was talking about.

  • -1

    Serrano

    "protesters stopped couriers from deivering a report"

    That's because the protesters weren't forcibly removed, which they shoud have been. "Jama desukedo..."

    "the base, which currently sits in a crowded urban area of the island, near dozens of schools and hospitals"

    Amazing how how all those schools and hospitals were built after the base was established.

  • 2

    bam_boo

    smithinjapan

    No, 95% of the whiners make up a mere few of the Okinawan public. Sorry if the 'silent majority' thing bothers you

    we had that discussion here before. There are numerous polls from various channels (Okinawan news papers, Japanese news papers) that all show the same results: depending on how you ask between 75% and 95% of the Okinawan population want's much less or no US bases their island and are clearly against the relocation of Futenma within the prefecture. I have posted various links to the polls in former posts.

    From all objectifiable information I have access to there's no doubt what the vast majority of Okinawans long for.

    I have never seen any signs of a 'silent pro US base majority' in Okinawa (except maybe for the wishful thinking displayed in the numerous posts of US military related people here at JT), but if you have any evidence of such please go ahead and show us where you get your data from... I'm open to discussing any somehow objectifiable information regarding the topic.

    whereas I know my dear friends in Okinawa to be reasonable people who know the US cannot suddenly vanish from the equation and have actually HELPED (and still help them) live and survive.

    the US helping Okinawans to survive? You want to say that without the US military Okinawans wouldn't exist anymore?
    Unfortunately even the so powerful US military can't prevent wars from happening and in certain cases a US military presence triggers even more violence then it prevents. You can be sure Okinawans would have survived without any US military on their island like they have for centuries. Okinawans have lived for centuries with the 'Chinese threat' and they have done so much better and more peaceful then since their quite disastrous incorporation into the Japanese nation.

    it's not 'their' island, as though separate from Japan, and Japan has agreed to house the military their, so they have no choice but to stick to the neighbourhoods their parents and grandparents decided to establish around the bases in order to make a living.

    very nicely said. I couldn't have said it better... yes, very unfortunately at the moment it's not their island and Okinawans have no choice...

    except they stand up against the odds and make democracy work for their own benefit, much like they are doing now.

  • -1

    YuriOtani

    The report will be delivered and the Governor will not approve the permit. If Tokyo and Washington need to let it drop with this. Oh about the Chinese, Okinawa was not invaded by China. In 1879 US President Grant gave Okinawa over to Japan. Than again in 1972, the people of Okinawa are tired of being dictated by outsiders.

  • -3

    smithinjapan

    "Than again in 1972, the people of Okinawa are tired of being dictated by outsiders."

    Maybe you're whining on the wrong site? Oh, and it's 'then' not the comparative 'than'.

  • -1

    brknarm

    Kadena Air Base is the most significant US military base in the pacific region and has far better capabilities than Futenma, which is basically just an airfield. If attacked, the Air Force will respond first (air strikes), while the Marines will work on ground strategy. And, most of the Marines will come from other bases anyway...not Futenma, as the population is quite small. The relocation (of Futenma) outside the prefecture is not as critical or important as some of the posters want it to appear.

  • 2

    voiceofokinawa

    To Newsman (Posted Dec. 28, 2011 - 12:48PM JST)

    Futenma is one of the 33 U.S. bases and installations in Okinawa. All these bases occupy about 18% of the land mass of Okinawa Island.

    As brknarm (Dec. 29, 2011 - 03:51AM JST) says, Futenma is just an airfield to base helicopters and C-130s. The aircraft are there merely to practice.

    My question to Newsman is how his argument will fit in this framework. Does he want to insist that Futenma's function must never be eliminated or reduced because Okinawa is located most conveniently for the U.S. global war strategy?

  • 0

    Gurukun

    . A nuke launch is a nuke launch, to be sure, but please explain the physics of how a jet fighter reaching 黒島 from Naha takes the same amount of time as the fighter flying in from Hokkaido.

    Then explain the rationale on how and/or why, if NKorea attacked Hokkaido, that a majority of the US Military would have to be deployed from Okinawa (because that where the majority is), rather then having the bases spread evenly throughout Japan.

  • 0

    Jared Norman

    Smithinjapan- Futenma actually opened in 1957 not 1945. There is really no need for the base anymore, technology has advance so much since then. All we really need is an aircraft carrier with fighter jets.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    . In 1879 US President Grant gave Okinawa over to Japan.

    Yuri you were informed of this earlier, Grant wasn't President of the US in 1879. Satsuma took over the Ryukyu's prior to that anyway. Your constant misrepresentation of the facts does not help with the current situation and has nothing to do with it either.

    (except maybe for the wishful thinking displayed in the numerous posts of US military related people here at JT),

    btw I am not military, nor military related, and where I live on the island I can go literally MONTHS without ever seeing any military folks, other than JSDF. They have no influence on my life nor the life around where I live either.

    • Moderator

      All readers back on topic please.

  • 0

    Newsman

    @ voiceofokinawa:

    Insist? If only I actually were in a position of authority to insist ... but I'm not. Besides, I'm far too mild to do so. I just like to point things out.

    I don't think practice is ever "mere". There is a reason professionals practice, whether you're a firefighter or a paramedic. Or a Marine. Would to God the professionals at Fukushima Daiichi had practiced more thoroughly. Many of them did a splendid job on the fly, but if their superiors had taken their own practice more seriously, there would not have been the bureaucratic delays that worsened the problem.

    As far as how much land should be assigned to military bases in Okinawa, I have no idea whether 18% is the appropriate figure, or 17% or 19%, or 25% or 10%. They're just numbers. What matters is being able to negotiate a figure that is most easily acceptable to both parties.

    I think the U.S. did try to negotiate in good faith. In 1996 the Japanese government wanted to lessen the impact of the American military presence for Okinawan residents. (Futenma, of course, is right in Ginowan City.) So they came up with a plan to build an offshore runway in Henoko Bay. Then people said, no, you can't do that because of the environmental impact. So then in 2005 the U.S. said, fine, we'll build it adjacent to the current Camp Schwab. Then people said, no, we don't want you here at all.

    It is an unfortunate fact of life that, sometimes, the place where people live is also coveted by outsiders for reasons that have nothing to do with the local residents. Nobody in Gettysburg wanted a battle to come to their little town, but it was their misfortune to live where a great many important roads intersected, and where two opposing armies found each other. Tibetans have been steamrolled by the PRC because China can't allow an unfriendly power to control the Himalayas. And the U.S. is in Okinawa for its own geopolitical reasons. You may not be happy with those reasons, but the U.S. does try to respond to local concerns, and on balance the U.S. has far and away a much better record of dealing with the local people than China could ever claim in Tibet.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    @Newsman

    I think the U.S. did try to negotiate in good faith. In 1996 the Japanese government wanted to lessen the impact of the American military presence for Okinawan residents. (Futenma, of course, is right in Ginowan City.) So they came up with a plan to build an offshore runway in Henoko Bay. Then people said, no, you can't do that because of the environmental impact. So then in 2005 the U.S. said, fine, we'll build it adjacent to the current Camp Schwab. Then people said, no, we don't want you here at all.

    Good faith? I wonder, both of your examples by the way are in the exact same location. Camp Schwab is next to Henoko Bay.

    Next, Japan didn't come up with the idea of Henoko, (again a part of Camp Schwab) the US initially considered moving Futenma to Henoko back in 1968, prior to the reversion of Okinawa to Japan.

    I guess one has to be familiar with the geography of the island to understand the confusion between the two. I wonder if there are more people out here that confuse Camp Schwab and Henoko with being two different locations and not one and the same.

  • 1

    Yubaru

    You may not be happy with those reasons, but the U.S. does try to respond to local concerns, and on balance the U.S. has far and away a much better record of dealing with the local people than China could ever claim in Tibet.

    You know, if you want to look at America's track record then you really should take a look in your own backyard. Ever hear of the Native American's and how they got screwed?

    If America was truly concerned about the "feelings" of the local population of Okinawa they would have moved the base off the island with no questions asked, but that's not how things work out here. They make trade offs, you want this, we get this in return.

    I'll give you a very recent example. The US Military returned a 18 hole golf course, Awase Meadows, the land returned just this year. BUT before they would agree to return the land the Japanese HAD to come up with an alternate facility. We're talking about a golf course, not a active military installation, but guess what, the Japanese government was acquiescent to the desires of the US, and built a new US Military golf course in Uruma City. Go figure huh?!?!

  • 0

    Newsman

    I am quite aware that Camp Schwab sits next to Henoko Bay. What I was referring to was the change in the plan from building the offshore runway in deeper water to building it closer to the camp, thus (arguably) lessening the environmental impact.

    As for history, I am equally aware of the tragedies bound up in the expansion of the American nation. I do not, however, think those events influence American foreign policy-making today. It would be like me trying to argue that Japan's 8th-century policy toward the Emishi influences how the national government treats Okinawa today. I would sincerely hope that the protesters who blocked the delivery of this government report do not believe they are the 21st-century successors to America's native peoples. This issue is strictly about where to build an airfield and that is all; it is not about the annihilation of a people.

  • 1

    Yubaru

    This issue is strictly about where to build an airfield and that is all;

    Here is the crux of the problem, it isn't "just" about where to build an airfield. To people like yourself who believe this don't truly get the bigger picture of those protesting the base and the US Military in Okinawa.

    The base and where it should go is just one part of a larger much more complex puzzle.

  • -2

    Larry Woodworth

    Ginowan City was built up around Futenma base. Futenma Base was not built in Ginowan City. The base was built upon the ruins of a village that was destroyed during the Battle of Okinawa. That village had been called Ginowan Village, but there was nothing left. The Okinawans started building around the base until it worked it's way up to a full-fledged city. NATURALLY, because the city is now there, the base has to go because it's too noisy and there's a risk that a plane would fall on the newcomers. (Reminds me of the idiots around here who buy houses next to an airport, then want to shut down the airport because of the noise from the aircraft.)

    Regardless, the Okinawans were whining, so Japan and the U.S. worked out an agreement where the base would get relocated away from populated areas and the only thing at risk for falling planes would be farm fields. Ginowan City would lose the American presence and wouldn't have to worry (as much) about things falling from the sky onto their houses. But WAIT! That's not good enough! Americans can't be ANYWHERE! Yes, there's no city there and 99% of the Okinawans would never have to deal with the Americans unless they wanted to, but THAT'S NOT GOOD ENOUGH! We're not Japanese, we're Okinawan, so any agreement Japan makes with regards to the country's security has NOTHING to do with us! We'll put together our OWN SDF - the OSDF! We'll buy fighters and helicopters and put them.... um... at the old Futenma base. But they'll be OUR fighters and helicopters falling on our houses, not American ones! So that's COMPLETELY different from the way it was before!

    Yeah, I went off on a tangent. But based on what I read here from actual Okinawans, that's what they'd do if they only weren't so scared of actually running their own country. They'd much rather f***-up the plans of their REAL government than do something like take ANY responsibility towards their own defense. I guess they want to eat their cake and have it too. They want to have protection and security, but they don't want to have to pay for it. NOTHING is for free, people. SOMEBODY has to pay: be it via taxes, or land, or both. Japan (and by extension, the prefecture of Okinawa) has been getting away with cheap defenses by having the Americans shoulder about half of the load. The main island is full, you can't put any more airbases there. The nearest alternate location would be up in Hokkaido. But the only location that Hokkaido is good for defending is Russia, and Russia isn't Japan's current concern.

    You should be lucky I don't have a say in U.S. policy OR YOU'D GET YOUR WISH. I'm sure you're familiar with the saying, "Be careful what you wish for, you just might get it"? Okinawans act like their island isn't strategically important. Apparently Okinawans fail at geography worse than Americans do. LOOK AT A MAP OF THE REGION. Now look at Taiwan just to the SW. The ONLY reason Taiwan is still independent is because of the American presence on Okinawa. Remove the Americans from Okinawa, and within months Taiwan will be reverted back to Formosa and under Communist Chinese rule again. The only question will be do they take defenseless Okinawa BEFORE or after they re-capture Formosa? Yes, the U.S. has a defense pact with Japan, but Japan can't even tell one of it's prefectures what to do, you expect them to tell the U.S. to go back into an prefecture they were kicked out of and DEFEND them?!? In your dreams. If I became President, you'd have to brush-up on your Chinese, folks!

  • -2

    Larry Woodworth

    @Jared Norman

    Futenma actually opened in 1957 not 1945.

    The AIRFIELD has been there since 1945 right after the Battle of Okinawa. 1957 was when it became a Naval airbase and subsequently a Marine Corps Airfield. (From Wiki:)

    Futenma Airfield was constructed by the US military following the Battle of Okinawa in 1945. It was built partly on the ruins of the villages of Aragusuku, Ginowan, Kiyuna and Isa, and entirely over the village of Kamiyama and surrounding farmland. According to Ginowan City records, the joint population of what was then Ginowan Village (now Ginowan City) was 12,994 in 1944. It was initially allocated for Eighth Air Force use to station B-29 Superfortress strategic bombers in the planned Invasion of Japan. With the end of the war, the airfield became a United States Air Force Far East Air Force installation known as Futenma Air Base, and was used as a support airfield for the nearby Kadena Air Base, hosting fighter-interceptor squadrons as part of the air defense of the Ryukyu Islands. The base was transferred to the United States Navy on 30 June 1957 and was subsequently developed into a major United States Marine Corps air station.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    To Newsman (Dec. 29, 2011 - 09:09AM JST):

    You say you are not in a position to dictate matters. Of course, you arn't. But you are not a fence sitter, either. You are already deeply committed to this forum as a strong supporter of the U.S. plan to relocate Futenma to Henoko.

    No one can dispute your claim that the military must practice. But there is no reason why the Marines must come half the world away from their homeland and practice in Okinawa. They could horn their combat skills in the U.S. mainland quite as well. To this, you may counter the nearer to flashpoints the better. But should a contingency ever happen in the region, could these Okinawa-stationed marines alone deal with it? Most of the marines will have to come from other bases in Hawaii and California anyway, as brknarm (Dec. 29, 2011 - 03:51AM JST) points out.

    You argue as if 33 bases and installations in Okinawa or the 18% occupation of Okinawa's land mass by the U.S. military was almost nothing to speak of, saying "They are just numbers" and suggesting that we must show "a figure that is most easily acceptable to both parties."

    But here's the fact you must never forget: Most of these bases in Okinawa sit on private land illegally confiscated by the U.S. occupation forces during and after WWII -- in violation of international law (Article 46 of Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land; Read my argument in other threads at JT).

    Thus, in essence, the U.S. has no legitimate right to use these bases. When asked for the return of one of the bases, Futenma, you cannot bring in any condition for its return. There is no such thing as "most easily acceptable to both parties." The matter is not negotiable.

    Don't equate Okinawa with Gettysburg. Okinawa is not U.S. soil.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    @Larry, The area rather consisted of the settlements of Aniya, Aragusuku, Futenma, Ginowan, Isa, Kamiyama, Kiyuna, Mashiki, Oyama and Uchidomari, with a combined population in the region of roughly 13,000. The city came into existence later.

    The base became operational in 1960.

  • 0

    Jared Norman

    Larry Woodworth- The land was confiscated by use of force, most of it in the 50's after the war. I am 1/4 okinawan 1/4 japanese by decent, you should watch you language the Okinawan people are not stupid. But yes they do need the rights to both protect there culture and to develop and economy.

  • 0

    Newsman

    @voiceofokinawa: Thanks for the info on the convention. I did read the entire document. My take on it is that, as the signatories to the convention are nation-states, it is up to the Japanese national government to lodge a protest if it felt private property was illegally confiscated by the Americans. The fact that it has not, together with what seem to me the more relevant sections of SOFA, indicates that that would be uphill sledding to successfully argue the convention was valid in this instance.

    Look, at least the Americans have been fairly forthright about saying what they want. It is the Japanese national government that has been unable to speak with a clear voice on the matter. If Japan said -- unequivocally -- that the U.S. had to leave, the Americans would have no choice but to go, as they did in the Philippines. Or if they told the people of Okinawa, "Too bad, but you're just going to have to suck it up," a lot of people in Okinawa, while no doubt unhappy, would begin to accept the situation. But the DPJ has yet to say, one way or another, "This is how it's going to be." On this matter, probably you and I would be in complete agreement that the people of Okinawa have been ill-served by the national government. The government (or maybe I should just say "Hatoyama") tried to please the Okinawans while continuing the benefits of its American partnership, and it failed spectacularly. The aftereffects of that debacle are still ongoing, as we saw on Tuesday.

    By the way, I am still struck by the notion -- as reported in the story -- that Okinawa Gov. Nakaima can, by denying the construction permit, sabotage the nation's defense plans. Wow.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    Thus, in essence, the U.S. has no legitimate right to use these bases.

    Nice try there Voice, the US has the right to use of the bases through treaty agreements with the national government of Japan. The land is leased from the country, and the landowners are paid generously I might add, for the land used.

    The legalities are covered under the agreement so the Hague convention argument holds no water today. (Actually from 1972 on wards)

  • 0

    just-a-guy

    Okinawa inhabiatnts were timid and easy prey for bullying, thats why Okinawa is long under 'occupations' by foreign forces! They should see how the iraqi people fought their way for freedom in 8 years against 'occupations'! Empty slogans and protest just doesnt work!

  • 1

    voiceofokinawa

    To Larry Woodworth (Dec. 29, 2011 - 11:42AM JST):

    You say, "Ginowan City was built up around Futenma base. Futenma Base was not built in Ginowan City. The base was built upon the ruins of a village that was destroyed during the Battle of Okinawa. That village had been called Ginowan Village."

    There were five villages there before the war: Ginowan, Kamiyama, Nakahara, Maehara and Aragusuku with a combined population of 12,994 in 1944. All ravaged during the war, the areas where these villages existed were encroached upon by the U.S. invasion forces with impunity and made into a vast air base with a 2,400-meter runway while people were herded into camps. Where else could they go except for settling down in the base-surrounding areas when they were allowed to go home after incarceration for some period? The fact that there are more than 3,000 military landowners for Futenma tells everything about its history. (By the way, there are more than 40,000 military landowners for all the U.S. bases in Okinawa.)

    It was those original Ginowan Village settlers who worked as pump priming factors to make Ginowan City as it is. New York City didn't exist when American colonists took over a small settlement called New Amsterdam from the Dutches. A city is born from a village as population grows.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    Voice, there was more to it than just the villages you mentioned, there was also Uchidomari, Kiyuna and Isa, as well. The land that Futenma was built on was some of, if not the best, farm land in all of Okinawa.

    The people that comment about, "Hey the base was there first" really have no idea of the island nor the situation regarding the history of both the base and Okinawa. Circumstances have changed greatly over the past 50 years, there were no helicopter squadrons to speak of when the base was built, nor were there Harrier jets either.

    While I am all for the military staying in Okinawa, I do believe that THAT BASE, Futenma, needs to be moved to prevent any potential problems in the future.

    In my humble opinion, the best option is jointly using Kadena. If that doesnt work, then Henoko.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    @Newsman

    By the way, I am still struck by the notion -- as reported in the story -- that Okinawa Gov. Nakaima can, by denying the construction permit, sabotage the nation's defense plans. Wow.

    Don't believe everything you read. The current laws in Japan give the prefectural governor the last say (currently) in projects that involve landfill's that extend into the ocean, or waters around the prefecture.

    It has been noted in the past that the national government is also prepared as a last resort, to change the current laws and take that "right" away from the local prefectural governors.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Newsman:

    Both 1951 and 1960 Japan-U.S. Security Treaties stipulate that Japan must ensure the stable use of bases and areas by the U.S. land, air and naval forces in Japan. Since these bases and forces were the carry-over from the days of Occupation, Japan was to remain under virtual U.S. military occupation as ever. In this sense, one can say the Japan-U.S. military alliance is a farce because Japan and the U.S. are not equal entities.

    This fact may not be easily observable in mainland Japan where U.S. bases are sparsely disposed, but it is most easily discernible in Okinawa where the bulk of U.S. bases concentrate. That's why many critics call Okinawa a U.S. military colony. If it is really a colony, then Okinawa is the last bastion of colonialism still remaining in Asia People often think colonies disappeared from Asia with the return of Hong Kong in 1997 and Macao in 1999 to China.

    You may suggest that we take our complaints about this situation to Tokyo. We do, of course. But we all know that it's the U.S. that pulls wires behind the scenes all the time. Naturally, the U.S. is the culprit against which our complaints must be directed first and foremost.

  • -1

    Yubaru

    You may suggest that we take our complaints about this situation to Tokyo. We do, of course. But we all know that it's the U.S. that pulls wires behind the scenes all the time. Naturally, the U.S. is the culprit against which our complaints must be directed first and foremost.

    States do not and should not have the power to negotiate issues of national defense with a foreign government. That is the prerogative and duty of the national government.

    The politicians in Okinawa have not done a good enough job in getting their points across to the national government. They always seem to come across as saying no to the bases, but holding out their other hand asking for more money to use as they see fit. The Okinawan government is nearsighted when it comes to issues of national defense, and refuse to acknowledge that as a part of Japan have a responsibility as well to play there part.

  • -1

    Yubaru

    one can say the Japan-U.S. military alliance is a farce because Japan and the U.S. are not equal entities.

    And just what country is an "equal entity" with the US. Of course Japan is not an "equal" but without the backing of the US this country would not have become what it has today. That is also something to keep in mind when wishing for something that could seriously affect the stability of the entire region.

    I and I am pretty sure, the rest of the world, would not want to see the US pull out of Japan, (which includes Okinawa).

  • 1

    voiceofokinawa

    Yubaru:

    You haven't denied my contention that Japan remains under virtual U.S. military occupation even today. In other words, you tacitly admit the bilateral relationship is like that between a suzerain and a colony. When I say the two countries are not equal entities, it is in this sense that they are not equal. An alliance between countries with such relationship is a farce.

    You say "the rest of the world not want to see the U.S. pull out of Japan, (which includes Okinawa)." Maybe, "the rest of the world" you speak of are the countries that suffered under occupation by Imperial Japan, which was crushed to the nail and doesn't exist any longer. These countries may want the U.S. forces to remain in Japan and function to not let the genie out of the bottle.

    If your thinking is in that line, then, your talk about "issues of national defense" is all the more a shenanigan.

  • 0

    Yubaru

    Voice yes I have you just haven't seen it. And don't go and try to put words into my mouth, nor ASSUME to THINK you know what I believe or think. Not good form at all.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Yubaru,

    I didn't say you said it. You implied it between the lines. So I didn't put these "words" into your mouth.

  • 0

    johninnaha

    Other areas were considered for the US bases. Kyushu was one of them. There was an incredible noise.

    No one wants US bases anywhere near them.

    This is why they are in Okinawa.

    Most Okinawans I meet are very against the bases. They just don't want any US military here at all.

    There are two reasons for this - they want the land back. They would make FAR more money from the huge lands used by Kadena and other bases by building on it, hotels, resorts, shopping centers. And the other thing is that having bases here make it dangerous. If there were an enemy attack (pretty unlikely, considering there isn't an enemy), but theoretically, if there were an enemy attack, it would happen here first to take out the US bases. Okinawa would be hit very badly. So no one wants a base anywhere near where he is.

    Most of the population of Okinawa is against the bases.

    99.9 percent of people in the Henoko area are against a huge US base there.

    This is supposed to be a democracy.

    Why does Tokyo continually ignore the feelings of the people who live here and who would suffer the most in a dangerous situation?

  • 0

    DELTA440

    I do see what he ment by the having your cake and eat it, but with the we want the us gone they seem to forget who were the first to help in your time of need i myself am japanese and i have no ill will toward america when this disaster hit our country march 11th of last year who came in our time of need all of those who want the usa gone who? america did their military went out to help find people and help repair the country, as well as deliver supplies to our people and even more the us president donated so much money to help our country money that belongs to the american people not us he gave us their money to help us recover. now if something bad like that happened to me and some guy goes out of his to help me could i say no go away no i couldnt that wouldnt be right after what u did when u didnt have to.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    To DELTA440:

    Relocating Futenma's function to Henoko means Japan has agreed to the permanent U.S. military presence in Okinawa (or more generally in Japan). Since this military presence is the carry-over from the WW II Occupation, it also means that Okinawa will bear the burdens of virtual military occupation indefinitely.

    Don't you think 33 foreign military bases in this small prefecture too many? Are there any foreign military bases near your town? Can you ever put up with jet engine noises, danger of aircraft crashes, crimes by foreign troops, environmental destruction, and so on and so forth? That situation has lasted for the past 67 years since the end of WW II and may continue into the far distant future in exchange for what you call America's good will or help in need.

  • -1

    Brian Sutton

    Futenma is one of the 33 U.S. bases and installations in Okinawa. All these bases occupy about 18% of the land mass of Okinawa Island.

    I think the above sentence is a quote from voiceofokinawa... PLEASE NAME ALL THE 33 BASES THAT ARE ON OKINAWA???? THIS IS NEW NEWS TO ME.... I WORK ON ONE OF THE BASES..AND BEEN TO ALL HERE ON OKINAWA.... TELL ME THE NAMES SO I COULD VISIT THOSE EXTRA BASES YOU SEEM WE HAVE HERE.

    SORRY FOR THE CAPS... KEYBOARD IS BEING CRAZY.....

  • 0

    YuriOtani

    So we wait for the Governor of Okinawa. So when he says "dame" and the Tokyo government sells us out again with a special "Okinawa only law" what will happen? Will the Okinawa police bust up the protest groups? If not will the American Marines break a few heads to allow construction? For now all we can do is wait.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    To Brian Sutton:

    It's astounding that a person should try to comment on U.S. bases in Okinawa without knowing this basic fact. Please don't discuss the U.S. military issue in Okinawa based solely on your imagination and casual observation. Read also the history how these bases came into being. They are not simply offered to the U.S. military under the Japan-US. Security Treaty as you may want to believe..

    Here's my answer to your questiion:

    Northern Training Area(78.2 square km), Iejima Auxiliary Air Base (8.0), Camp Schwab (20.6), Henoko Ordnance Ammunition Depot (1.2), Camp Hansen (51.2), Kadena Ammunition Storage Area (26.6 ), Camp Courtney (1.3), U.S. Army Garrison Torii Station (1.9), Kadena Air Base (19.9 ), Camp Zukeran including Camp Butler and Camp Foster (6.4), White Beach Naval Facility (1.6 ), USMC Air Station Futenma (4.8), Makiminato Service Area (2.7), US Army Fuel Storage Facility (1.6). [Subtotal: 225.8 square km]

    Camp Seals (0.7), Camp Kuwae (0.7), Ginbaru Training Area (0.6), Naha Military Port (0.6), Awase Communications Facilities (0.6), Okuma Rest Center (0.5), Kin Blue Beach Training Area (0.4), Camp McTureus (0.4). [Subtotal: 4.4 square km]

    The remaining 11 installations consist of 8 firing ranges, among which are Kitadaito Firing Range (1.1) in Kitadaito-Son and Kobisho Firing Range (0.9) in the Senkakus; Kin Red Beach Training Area (0.17), Tengan Pier (0.31) and Tsukenjima Training Area (0.2), etc., with the total area of 1.4 square km.   The grand total of the 33 installations used exclusively by the U.S. military amounts to 229.2 square km. [The figure excludes 5 joint use areas with the SDF.] However, U.S. military-only areas are not limited to those 33.

    (See "U.S. Military Issues in Okinawa" published by Okinawa Prefecture Military Affairs Division.)

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Addenda:

    However, U.S. military-only areas are not limited to those 33. Besides the land areas, there are 19 water areas reserved for exclusive use by the U.S. military. Furthermore, there are 20 designated areas of airspace, including some for exclusive use by the USAF and others for joint use by USAF and JASDF.

    Brian, with this fact under your nose, do you think you can deny Okinawa is not occupied by foreign military forces?

  • -1

    Brian Sutton

    Thanks for the list. With a break down like that, it does seem we have a lot of land.. Did you mention in the list the land that JWTC sits on is pretty big.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Brian,

    I think JWTC is an integral part of Northern Training Area.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    To anyone who doesn't know what JWTC means:

    JWTC stands for Jungle Warfare Training Center. Is such training necessary for the defense of Japan?

  • -1

    Brian Sutton

    The Japanese army are known to train there along with a few other countries. So you can say... it kinda is..

  • 0

    DELTA440

    To voiceofokinawa i see what you mean about it being all hosted there i myself live in tokyo shibuya, the bases could be transfered to the mainland but i doubt the gov will do it but it would be fair to okinawa if the mainland hosted some of the bases.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    A couple of years ago, according to a local newspaper, the Marines Okinawa gave a tour of JWTC to military officers from some EU countries. They said they were impressed with the facilities and showed interest in training there. So what you say may be true. But I think the most likely countries that train there without our knowing are Southeast Asian countries spearheaded by the Philippines.

    The problem is on what legal basis can the Marines sublease the area for use by a third country. This single fact betrays the U.S. military's thinking that Okinawa is a U.S. colony that can be used for whatever purpose they like.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    To Brian Sutton:

    A couple of years ago, according to a local newspaper, the Marines Okinawa gave a tour of JWTC to military officers from some EU countries. They said they were impressed with the facilities and showed interest in training there. So what you say may be true. But I think the most likely countries that train there without our knowing are Southeast Asian countries spearheaded by the Philippines.

    The problem is on what legal basis can the Marines sublease the area for use by a third country. This single fact betrays the U.S. military's thinking that Okinawa is a U.S. colony that can be used for whatever purpose they like.

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    To DELTA440:

    Do you know there are 8 U.S. military bases and installations in Metropolitan Tokyo alone including Iwo-to (Jima Jima)? The largest installation is, of course, Yokota Air Base followed by Iwo-to Communications Station.

    All over Japan, there are 85 installations (310,055,000 square meters), of which 52 are planted in mainland Japan (80,810,000 s.m.) and 33 in Okinawa (229,000,000 s.m.). So I wouldn't suggest Futenma be relocated somewhere in mainland Japan. Japan itself is overcrowded with U.S. bases already as if it were not a sovereign state, and in fact it is not.

    So you have a good amount of study to do about this U.S. military presence in Japan in general and Okinawa in particular.

  • 0

    DELTA440

    i knew our country hosted us bases and i knew about yokata ive seen it but i didnt know there were so many already on the mainland i just thought okinawa had all of them,but we could fix this US presence if we ratifiy article 9 of our constittution and build an actual standing army. than we wouldnt need us bases if our military was rebuilt .

  • 0

    Gurukun

    voice, my hats off to you. You possess a wealth of knowlege pertaining to Okinawa, the bases, history, as well as the culture. Well said on all your posts!

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