voiceofokinawa's past comments

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Air raids on Japan began on October 10, 1944, starting with the Naha 10/10 Air Raid, devastating more than 60 cities all across Japan by the end of the war. Of which, the Great Tokyo Air Raid on March 10, 1945 was the most destructive and tragic. More than 100,000 people are said to have been perished in a fire caused by incendiary bombs just over a single night..

    So flying B-25 or any other aircraft that participated in the air raids to honor them in a high-profile fashion is like rubbing salt into the wound for the victimized citizens some of whom are still suffering from PTSD.

    Posted in: B-25 bombers to fly over Ohio to honor historic air raid on Japan

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    CyburneticTiger,

    ... the only jets the Izumo could carry are the AV-8 or the F-35C because it lacks the deck length needed for any others to take off or land.

    You sound as if the Izumo could carry only outmoded jets. But aren't AV-8's and F-35's cutting-edge aircraft, the former having a V/STOL function and the latter a stealth function?

    But I won't go any further in this discussion for technical details about the Izumo. All I want to know is why the JMSDF needs to possess such a warship only for self-defense.

    Posted in: Japan plans to send its largest warship to South China Sea

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    CyburneticTiger,

    It may lack enough space on the deck to carry a required number of aircraft, as you say. But when it participated in joint Japan-U.S. exercises off the U.S. coast last year, it demonstrated capability to put a landed MV-2 Osprey away into a storage space under the deck. Can't its cruising speed at 30 knots (56 km/h) deal with landing and taking-off jet planes easily?

    Posted in: Japan plans to send its largest warship to South China Sea

  • -1

    voiceofokinawa

    nandakandamanda,

    The article says:

    The 249 meter-long Izumo is as large as Japan’s World War Two-era carriers and can operate up to nine helicopters. It resembles the amphibious assault carriers used by U.S. Marines, but lacks their well deck for launching landing craft and other vessels.

    I see. It may lack a well deck to release assaul troops and vehicles the BonHomme Richard has. So it may not be an assault ship, but can't it be turned into a regular assault aircraft carrier with only minor changes made in a short period of time?

    Posted in: Japan plans to send its largest warship to South China Sea

  • -1

    voiceofokinawa

    Why is this gigantic warship called an anti-submarine warfare (ASW) carrier and classified as a helicopter destroyer? It's no different from the USS amphibious assault ship BonHomme Richard in size and almost all other specifications.

    Posted in: Japan plans to send its largest warship to South China Sea

  • -2

    voiceofokinawa

    Funny the Trump administration is still insisting that Japan open its auto market to U.S. carmakers when it's reported the U.S. imposes 2.5% tarrifs on imported Japanese cars while Japan imposes no tarriff at all on U.S.-made cars (See Sankei Shimbun: Jan. 24, 2017). Doesn't the Trump team know about this fact? Or should this information of mine be taken with a grain of salt?

    Posted in: Japan says no barriers to auto imports after U.S. fires trade salvo

  • -1

    voiceofokinawa

    North Korean leader Kim Jong-un must be well aware that his military is no match in a war for U.S. military power. So would he dare launch Rodong and Scud-C missiles against Japan or Taepodong-3 missiles against the United States, knowing that such an action would mean the annihilation of his regime and the country?

    Do North Korea's simultaneous firings on March 6 of four missiles as simulation of saturation attacks mean that Kim Jong-un is preparing to attack Japan and the U.S. in anytime soon, oblivious of the fact that it would result in the annihilation of his regime and the country?

    Sources reveal that U.S.-developed missile defense systems such as PAC-3 and THAAD cannot deal with saturation attacks – simultaneous launchings of missiles overwhelming the enemy’s defense capability. So, maybe, the North Korean threat has indeed entered a new level of threat as P.M. Abe says. But, if so, then it's time to rethink the U.S. military realignment in Japan in which the Futenma-to-Henoko relocation plan takes center stage. The whole project has now turned out as sheer nonsense. Can anyone claim now that the Henoko relocation is absolutely necessary to maintain deterrence when U.S. bases in Japan are all vulnerable to North Korean (as well as Chinese) missile attacks?

    Posted in: N Korean missile launch was training exercise for strike on U.S. bases in Japan: KCNA

  • -1

    voiceofokinawa

    North Korean leader Kim Jong-un must be well aware that his military is no match in a war against U.S. military power. Would he dare launch Rodong and Scud-C missiles against Japan, or Taepodong-3 missiles against the United States, knowing that such an action would mean the annhilation of his regime and the country?

    Do North Korea's simultaneous firings on March 6 of four missiles as simulation of saturation attacks mean that Kim Jong-un is preparing to attack Japan and the U.S. in the near future, oblivious of the fact that it would mean the annhilation of his regime and the country?

    Sources reveal that such missiles defense systems as PAC-3 and THAAD cannot match against saturation attacks. So, maybe, the North Korean threat has entered a new stage as P.M Abe says. But then it's time to rethink the U.S. military realignment in Japan in which the Futenma-to-Henoko relocation plan takes center stage. The whole project has now turned out as a sheer nonsense.

    Posted in: As N Korean missile threat grows, Japanese lawmakers argue for first strike options

  • 1

    voiceofokinawa

    Re-posting after some correction:

    voiceofokinawa Feb. 27, 2017 - 07:48AM JST

    Foreign Affairs Minister Fumio Kishida visited Okinawa primarily to participate in a ceremony commemorating the 20th anniversary of the opening in Naha, Okinawa of a branch office of his Ministry. This office, whose head is called Okinawa Ambassador Plenipotentiary, is supposed to settle various issues Okinawa faces vis-a-vis U.S. bases as an intermediary between Okinawa and Washington.

    There's another high-profile office in Okinawa, Okinawa Defense Bureau, formerly a branch of the Defense Facilities Administration Agency that was originally established to help U.S. Forces operate smoothly in Japan. So, for example, the Henoko relocation issue falls within the jurisdiction of this office.

    There're then two conflicting bodies in the Japanese government per se, one tasked with eliminating Okinawa's base-hosting burden and the other tasked with helping Washington implement its military strategy in Japan. Since there doesn't seem any conflict at all between the two government bodies, however, I must say they are all part of the same gang.

    Kishida came to Okinawa to confirm and celebrate this in a high-profile fashion.

    Article Unavailable

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Defense Minister Fumio Kishida visited Okinawa primarily to participate in a ceremony commemorating the 20th anniversary of the opening in Naha, Okinawa of a branch office of his Ministry. This office, whose head is called Okinawa Ambassador Plenipotentiary, is supposed to settle various issues Okinawa faces vis-a-vis U.S. bases as an intermediary between Tokyo and Washington.

    There's another high-profile office in Okinawa, Okinawa Defense Bureau, formerly a branch of the Defense Ministry's Defense Facilities Administration Agency that was originally established to help U.S. Forces operate smoothly in Japan. So, for example, the Henoko relocation issue falls within the jurisdiction of this office.

    There're then two conflicting bodies in the Japanese government per se, one tasked with eliminating Okinawa's base-hosting burden and the other tasked with helping Washington implement its military strategy in Japan. Since there doesn't seems any conflict at all between the two government bodies, however, I must say they are all part of the same gang.

    Kishida came to Okinawa to confirm and celebrate this in a high-profile fashion.

    Article Unavailable

  • 1

    voiceofokinawa

    Any person with a common sense will react to this court ruling exactly as Thunderbird2 does, I’m sure. For no rational-minded person would understand why the Japanese taxpayers must clean up the mess by paying damages when the real culprit is the U.S. military.

    But that is what the reality of Japan-U.S. relations is. Article 24 (Clause 2) of SOFA, a rider to the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty stipulates that "Japan will furnish for the duration of this Agreement without cost to the United States and make compensation where appropriate to the owners and suppliers thereof all facilities and areas." I suspect if this provision can apply to compensation for noise pollution and other damages, but Japan is obliged to bear all these expenses probably based on this provision.

    In this case the Japanese government must pay compensation to the plaintiffs in the amount of about 30.2 billion yen ($267 million) on behalf of the U.S. military. The plaintiffs, however, are reported to appeal the case to a higher court because their ultimate goal in this law suit is to prevent ear-splitting noises caused by nighttime and early morning flights of U.S. military aircraft.

    Article Unavailable

  • -1

    voiceofokinawa

    Patrick Hattman,

    The moot question at issue here is not about whether "many Americans work very hard on Okinawa and mainland Japan to help provide for the defense of the country" as you say but about whether the U.S. Coast Guard can be stationed here on a par with other armed forces.

    Note that Article 6 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty stipulates "the United States of America is granted the use by its land, air and naval forces of facilities and areas in Japan." Those "land, air and naval forces" are none other than the Army, the Air Force and the Navy," according to the Japanese version of the Treaty, thus excluding the Coast Guard as well as the Marines.

    Article Unavailable

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Correction:

    "Coast Gurds" in my post above should be "National Guards".

    But I must pint out the U.S. Coast Guards also maintain a facility in Okinawa in apparent violation of the Security Treaty.

    Article Unavailable

  • 4

    voiceofokinawa

    Why can't they stop nighttime and early morning flights at Kadena? It is because the air base is integrally connected with bases in the U.S. mainland. It's often the case that U.S. mainland-based military aircraft, oftentimes Coast Guards', come to Kadena to train in Okinawa's airspace. They take off and land in the U.S. mainland in the daytime to avoid complaints of nighttime take-offs and landings by their own citizens, blatantly giving short shrift to people living near and around Kadena.

    Actually, such use of Kadena Air Base violates provisions stipulated in the security treaty which posers like Yubaru value so much. The U.S. military is granted to use bases and areas in Japan only to defend Japan and its vicinity, according to Article 6 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty. Did the U.S. sign the agreement fully knowing it will break it anyway?

    Article Unavailable

  • 0

    voiceofokinawa

    Yubaru (Feb. 23, 2017 - 07:57PM JST),

    Article 25 of the Japanese Constitution stipulates: "All people shall have the right to maintain the minimum standards of wholesome and cultured living." In light of this stipulation, then, nighttime and early morning flights by roaring U.S. military aircraft can be easily banned right then and there, but the court ruling says that Japan has no authority over what is being done in U.S. bases, completely neglecting to uphold the provision.

    I say this clearly shows how U.S. bases, together with the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, surpass the nation's own constitution.

    Against this, you counter that the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, which guarantees the U.S. military presence in Japan and the free use of bases and areas by U.S. forces, doesn't surpass the constitution because it was bilaterally agreed upon between the two governments.

    It was a bilateral agreement all right but you must understand under what circumstances that agreement was made. It was an agreement between the winner of the war and the loser, so in favor of the U.S. in every respect and thus placing U.S. bases above and beyond the Japanese constitution..

    Article Unavailable

  • 12

    voiceofokinawa

    Schopenhaur & gaijin playa,

    You know the case of Futenma Air Station, where farming villages were gobbled up into an airstrip while the villagers were herded into concentration-like camps for a few years after the end of the Battle of Okinawa. The same happened in the case of Kadena Air Base. The Yara and Mizugama districts of today's Kadena Town had been all parts of Chatan Town but were separated from Chatan by the expanded Kadena Air Base. Can you tell the villagers to go away and live far off the base to avoid noise pollution?

    Where's the justice in such a claim?

    Article Unavailable

  • 8

    voiceofokinawa

    gaijin playa

    You seem to claim they've filed a law suit for money. No, their main purpose is to demand the government take resolute action to "ban nighttime and early morning flights" and, if possible, close the base completely.

    The court didn't touch on this issue, though, saying only that Japan has no authority over what is being done in U.S. bases in Japan. This is a model case that clearly shows how U.S. bases together with the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty surpasses the nation's own constitution. Is Japan really an independent sovereignty? That's what the plaintiffs and Okinawa are asking through the lawsuit.

    Note also who bears the damages. It's the Japanese government and so the Japanese taxpayers that must clean up all this mess the U.S. military, a real culprit, makes.

    Article Unavailable

  • 2

    voiceofokinawa

    theeastisred,

    Yes, I think there's more room for the cool-headed discussion of the issue, at either a government or a civilian level, before one party hastily claims the islands belong to them historically and in light of international law.

    Posted in: China upset at disputed islands mention in Japan-U.S. meeting

  • 2

    voiceofokinawa

    Why are these barren islands called "Senkaku" in Japan and "Diyaoyudao" in China?

    Common nouns in a language are very ad hoc in naming objects. There's no reason why things are called as they are in languages. However, proper nouns are different from common nouns in that there's always reasons behind -- why they are called by such and such names.

    Kubajima (久場島)or Huangwei Yu (黄尾鱮)in Chinese in the Senkaku/Diaoyudao Islands was an important landmark for ancient Ryukyu (Okinawa) seamen and traders navigating on the Okinawa-Fuchuan sea lane. These seafarers, who were thoroughly familiar with the Senkaku waters more than anyone else, called this landmark "Kubajima" because, according to one theory, the island was covered full with “kuba” (or Areca) palms. But I think it was called by that name because the island's shape is quite similar to that of another island called Kubajima, that is located about 40 km west of Naha, Okinawa Island, on the same sea lane. When necessary, the former was called "Iigun Kubajima" to distinguish it from the latter.

    Wasn't Chinese "Huangmao (Yu)" (黄毛)as recorded by Chen Kan (陳侃, 1534)and "Huangwei (Yu)" recorded elsewhere, meaning yellow hair or tail, a phonetic conversion of Kuba(-jima)? Note that the k-sound of Japanese (and Okinawan) ordinarily corresponds to the h-sound in Chinese. Or did the Chinese think the island was inhabited by mythic animals with yellow tails or hair and so named it as such?

    The easternmost island in the chain is officially called Taishojima in Japan, but historically it used to be called Kumi-Akajima by Ryukyu seamen. Here, too, we see the same mechanism of nomenclature as in the case of Kubajima. There's an island called Akajima in the Kerama Islands whereby Kumi-Akajima in the Senkakus must have been named after this with Kumi added to differentiate it from the original.

    The Chinese calls this island Chiwei Yu (赤尾鱮), meaning "red-tailed island." Does it mean the Chinese believed the island was inhabited by animals with red tails? Isn't it a semantic conversion of what Ryukyu seamen called Kumi Akajima (久米阿嘉島), which could mean "Kume Red Island" if interpreted in folk etymology?

    The name "Senkaku" comes from English "Pinnacle Islands." The HMS Samarang made a port at Ishigaki Island three times and on its second port calling in May, 1845, it launched out upon an exploration of the "hitherto unheard-of" island group which the islanders called Iigunjima. Approaching the islands northward from Ishigaki Island on May 8, they must have been struck with the similarity of the first approaching island to Bartolome Island in the Galapagos, which is famous for its Pinnacle Rock, therefore calling the island group Pinnacle Islands. The Japanese name "Senkaku" was coined after this by a natural history teacher named Hisashi Kuroiwa, in 1900, who hailed from Kochi Prefecture in Shikoku and taught at Okinawa Normal School.

    The Meiji government called the largest island in the chain "Uotsuri-jma", which is an apparent translation from the Chinese "Diaoyudao". It also called the adjacent islands lying southeast of it "Kita Kojima" (North Islet) and "Minami Kojima" (South Islet) respectively. The Chinese names "Bei Xiaodao" and "Nan Xiaodao" definitely come from these Japanese names.

    Ancient Ishigaki fishermen called the island (group) "Iigun-jima." "Iigun" (rhymed with "eagle") means the head of a spear used in dive-fishing, a fishing method probably unknown to the Chinese. The reason why it is called so is similar to why the highest mountain in the Japan Alps in Honshu is called "Yarigadake." The top of the rugged mountain reminds one of the head of a spear ("yari").

    Why did the Chinese call the island (group) Diaoyudao meaning "fishing island"? Did unworldly men, as often depicted in Chinese drawings, go there and spent days angling for fish? Or have Chinese fishermen come here to engage in blue-water fishing since ancient times? Note, however, that blue-water fishing started only recently with the development of modern refrigeration technology.

    Isn't "Diaoyudao" a semantic conversion of what Chinese royal missions to and from Ryukyu were explained to by Ryukyu seamen and traders traveling and navigating together aboard the same tributary and trading ships? Note that Chinese royal envoys came to Ryukyu Kingdom 25 times during the period from 1373 to 1866. During the same period, Ryukyu seamen, traders and the Ryukyu King's appreciatory envoys sailed to China more than 200 times.

    All these linguistic and historical facts must be taken into consideration before anyone says anything about sovereignty over the Senkaku/Diaoyudao Islands on the basis of nomenclature.

    Posted in: China upset at disputed islands mention in Japan-U.S. meeting

  • 2

    voiceofokinawa

    smithinjapan,

    A further comment:

    Hirokazu Nakaima won his second term in a gubernatorial election on the platform that he will oppose the Henoko relocation plan. He kept reiterating that promise during the second term as a governor. Of course I endorsed him for his handling of the issue during that period. But toward the end of his governorship he suddenly flip-flopped his position before the high-profile promise made by the central government to allocate a ssignificant amount of special aid money in the hope that he may change his mind and permit the construction.

    He was defeated to the nail in the ensuing gubernatorial election. And you know the rest of the story.

    Article Unavailable

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