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Troubled times in Yokosuka

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By Henry Hilton

It's happened yet again. Photographs of top U.S. brass apologizing for crimes by their military personnel against Japanese citizens are occurring far too often for comfort.

Rear Admiral James Kelly's bow in front of the mayor of Yokosuka over the alleged murder by a U.S. sailor of a Japanese taxi driver is guaranteed to bring the U.S.-Japan security pact into question. And rightly so, as this pattern of criminality following on so soon after the Okinawan alleged rape issue in February is both deplorable and a major criticism of the command structure of the U.S. armed forces.

It's no good for folk to invoke the hoary old metaphor of a few bad apples existing unchecked within any institution. The United States government through the State Department and Pentagon have simply got to straighten out the indiscipline among elements of its military personnel stationed in Japan or face the unpleasant consequences for its entire Asia-Pacific strategy.

No nation, however close its political and military ties to the United States, is going to stomach a seemingly endless number of cases of murder, rape and theft against its citizenry. Alliances within democracies that continue to insist on shared values of respect and human rights rest ultimately on a degree of public support that no elected politicians can ignore for long.

The question that outsiders find particularly puzzling is simple: Why can't the U.S. military authorities better control the behavior of the servicemen under their command? Perhaps some elements within the U.S. military may need to be continually reminded that Japan is an independent state that determines its own foreign and security policies, albeit in close liaison with Washington. The American occupation ended in the middle of the 20th century, though some in the U.S. military may still be imagining that they are living the life of Riley in the autumn of 1945.

U.S. Marine, air and naval facilities in Okinawa and Yokosuka stand on Japanese soil. It follows that no Japan-American basing agreements are worth sixpence if they keep on becoming the venues for mass protests and demonstrations against the United States. It won't do simply to claim that the crimes that rightly gain massive coverage in the Japanese media are rare incidents that may be exploited by those with their own anti-American agendas.

Unless there is better discipline by U.S. military authorities, it is hard to see how any Japanese government, even one as pro-American as the coalition cabinet under Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda, can avoid ducking the issue indefinitely. Watch out Washington, for talks on limiting U.S. rights or hints that budgetary restrictions could apply to future financial deals over Japan's base contributions.

It's surely time that the U.S. did rather more than simply proclaiming a curfew or ordering a ban on the consumption of alcohol among its personnel. Smacks across the knuckles don't appear to be doing the trick. Maybe it might be more effective to start going after the generals and admirals if and when the next incident occurs. The U.S. Navy won't need reminding that the Brits shot Admiral Byng on his own quarterdeck as an example to others.

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This quote:

"It’s no good for folk to invoke the hoary old metaphor of a few bad apples existing unchecked within any institution. The United States government through the State Department and Pentagon have simply got to straighten out the indiscipline among elements of its military personnel stationed in Japan or face the unpleasant consequences for its entire Asia-Pacific strategy."

I agree, but unfortunately the military like any other institution has its share of bad apples. Forget all the military honor and discipline stuff, some of these bad apples would sell out their fellow peeps to gain an advantage of any sort. Sorry but that's the truth. Basic training and boot camp can only do so much to weed out the bad ones.

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"No nation is going to stomach a seemingly endless number of cases of murder, rape and theft against its citizenry."

There is also a new breed of US service wo/man out there too. The Green Card soldier. Also the stop-loss felony-waiver soldier. I dare say there are lots of these in Japan. That may be part of the problem.

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I don't necessarily disagree with most of what is written but I do have a question about the 'endless number.' Does anyone have any real, hard numbers as to how many crimes have been committed by US military personnel over the last 10 or 20 years or so?

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"Rear Admiral", tee hee.

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"The U.S. Navy won't need reminding that the Brits shot Admiral Byng on his own quarterdeck as an example to others."

Oh, for cryin' out loud - as if the shooting of Admiral Byng for "failing to do his utmost" to lay waste to the French fleet 275 years ago has anything to do with this.

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Sarge - I whole heartedly agree. Besides, who other than Brits, history buffs and Royal Navy historians know who Adm Byng is? Maybe I'm an idiot, but I had to Wiki that one.

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Twenty4Play - So did I.

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"Unless there is better discipline by U.S. military authorities, it is hard to see how any Japanese government, even one as pro-American as the coalition cabinet under Prime Minister Yasuo Fukuda, can avoid ducking the issue indefinitely. Watch out Washington, for talks on limiting U.S. rights or hints that budgetary restrictions could apply to future financial deals over Japan’s base contributions.

It’s surely time that the U.S. did rather more than simply proclaiming a curfew or ordering a ban on the consumption of alcohol among its personnel. Smacks across the knuckles don’t appear to be doing the trick. Maybe it might be more effective to start going after the generals and admirals if and when the next incident occurs. The U.S. Navy won’t need reminding that the Brits shot Admiral Byng on his own quarterdeck as an example to others."

I really wonder how much research Mr. Hilton did into U.S. Military Justice? These statements here show an incredible lack of understanding about the US Military Justice Sytem and the US Military Code of Conduct. I am astoished that this writer would make such blatantly blanket statements, in light of the fact that the U.S. Military does take discipline of its personnel seriously, and that the penalties handed out even for <i>allegations</i> of misconduct are usually severe....even so far as receiving a dishonorable dismissal. The U.S. Military takes the discipline of its personnel very, VERY seriously, and, yes, there are cases of a rotten apple in the bunch, and that one rotten apple <i>doesn't</i> spoil the bunch.

As far as the Admiral Bying incident, if we're going to reach back into history that far, then what about more recently, when Imperial Japanese Military personnel basically raped, pillaged, murdered, and destroyed to their hearts'delight in China and Korea? Hows come Japan 60-70 years ago gets a pass, when their troops committed horrible atrocities <i>en masse</i>, yet the U.S.A. gets pounced on for singular events?

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Kelly had his chance to deal with the situation from the beginning but fluffed it trying to do his public relations job for the US navy.

This is what he should have said and done. When the news broke his should have said that the navy would treat the alleged crime extremely seriously whilst providing the seaman with his proper civil rights until the correct evidence was gathered. Kelly should also have invited the local police in for joint interviewing of the suspect from day one instead of hiding him away from civil questioning within the garrison.

Instead he was too pre-occupied in deflecting suspicion away from the seaman and dismissing the credit card evidence as media suspicion. No point in bowing now Kelly.

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@Northlondon

http://mdn.mainichi.jp/national/news/20080403p2a00m0na031000c.html

"On behalf of the U.S. Navy, please accept my deepest apology for this cruel and shameful incident, and the trouble, fear and sorrow it has caused," he said. "You have my solemn promise that a maximum and continuing effort will be made to prevent the recurrence of such a heinous crime in Yokosuka, or anywhere else in Japan."

Minus the part about protecting the sailor's civil rights, I'd say he did pretty much exactly what you said.

http://www.japantoday.com/category/crime/view/us-military-promises-to-cooperate-with-japanese-police-over-taxi-drivers-murder

Kelly also refra**ined from commenting on why the sailor’s credit card was found inside the taxi, saying, ‘‘I wouldn’t want to speculate at any of the things that are being mentioned in media about evidence.’’

Does that really seem like an unreasonable statement? It seems less about dismissing evidence as media suspicion and more about not wanting to put his foot in his mouth and send the media into even more of a frenzy.

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Wow is good to see that you don't have a clue. Yes crimes are bad and should not occur. One death is one too many.

<strong>Moderator: As we have ruled numerous times on many threads, references to crimes committed by Japanese are of course irrelevant to this discussion.</strong>

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DanTheManInJapan,

You misunderstand. I was talking about Kelly's quotes when news of the murder and the credit card belonging to a seaman first broke.

Of course it's easy for Kelly to make profound apologies after the guy admitted to the murder.

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Kelly also refra**ined from commenting on why the sailor’s credit card was found inside the taxi, saying, ‘‘I wouldn’t want to speculate at any of the things that are being mentioned in media about evidence.’’

How about saying, 'We will do our utmost, with the assistance of the local police, to find out why a credit card belonging to one of our employees was discovered at the scene of a murder'. There, that sounds a little more positive doesn't it ?

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The U.S. military said Sunday it will cooperate if requested with Japanese police in their investigation of the case of a cabdriver found murdered in his taxi in Yokosuka in which a U.S. Navy sailor’s credit card was found, but declined to comment about the sailor’s possible involvement in the case.

The article doesn't include the original quote, but again--I think everything you're asking for has already been done. Also, your version of the quote would surely influence the reader to assume guilt on the part of the sailor. Definitely NOT the sort of thing that a man in Adm. Kelly's position should be doing.

As for your previous post, I have a feeling you'd be filled with the same righteous indignation whether Kelly had offered an apology or not. The guy responded in a way that was 100% appropriate given the circumstances and his position.

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Where's your email.... Mr. Henry Hilton...?

You know it's very common for people that write opinions to include their email or other contact information so readers can get in touch with them...

But I guess you are not a REAL journalist.... It shows...

<strong>Moderator: It is our policy not to permit readers to contact writers directly because in the past, ill-mannered readers have sent insulting messages to them. In fact, many commentaries are submitted to us by readers and we are happy to publish them. Mr Hilton is one such reader. If you disagree with anything he wrote, please say why in a mature manner. That's the purpose of the discussion board. Also, if you would care to submit a commentary, we would be happy to consider it for publication. </strong>

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Great stuff.

Make it weekly:

"Henry Hilton and His High Horse"

dashing towards the cliffs of the obvious...

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" If you disagree with anything he wrote, please say why in a mature manner."

Are we all allowed to premptively try and ensure that there is no debate, by including statements such as "It’s no good for folk to invoke the hoary old metaphor of a few bad apples..." or "It won’t do simply to claim that the crimes..."???

Or is only the "writer" allowed to convict 100% of military members because of the crime of a very rare few?

Here, let me give it a try...

It is a REALITY, that the crimes of a very rare few are too many. Even the military members agree that one is too much. It’s no good for folk to scream loudly about the lack of punishment, and it won't do to simply ask the US military to leave.

Another reality is that unless there is mass murder occuring, the Asian alliance is vastly too important to the entire region. The US will not be asked to leave, nor will the vocal minority be able to dictate punishment of military members.

Every media outlet has an agenda. What is reported, how it is reported, and often when it is reported, is all written and timed to increase readership and invoke outrage. This writer personally knows that statements of "Japanese police were not allowed..." are false, as is other information reported. Yet, those loudest few take these reported "facts" and assume they are correct. It's not their fault, they simply don't have access to all the correct information.

Punishment needs to occur when laws are broken. And it most assuredly is occuring. The pace of investigations, turn-overs, etc., may not be to the liking of the general populace, but it is always within the scope of U.S and Japanese law, as well as the SOFA. However, there is one thing that is paramount. Every military member should not be painted with the same brush as a suspected, or even convicted, criminal. To do so simply reverts to a past time when people were stigmitized simply because of their sex, color of their skin, or religious beliefs. We are supposed to be beyond punishing everyone for the act of a few. Those of us who take our part as US Ambassadors seriously wish that the civilian population, both Japanese and other, took it the same way.

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I don't think many on either side of the issue would disagree that crimes committed by US Service members in Japan are unacceptable. The author's point that no nation will tolerate such acts against its citizens is a good and valid argument. I also agree that its the military brass that should be held accountable for the action of its men/women.

I have to disagree with the notion that crimes committed by US Service members are rampant and the insinuation that it is in some way condoned. The author does not appear to be familiar with action taken by US Forces when crimes are committed nor displays an understanding of the national crime statistics which shows the relatively rare nature of crimes committed by US service members. He should have at least become familiar with some of that information in order to butt up against the sensationalized reporting in which he appears to be basing his opinion.

The bar must be raised to a height in which an obtainable outcome can be achieved. Mr. Hilton, and many others seemingly want to raise the bar to an impossible height so that whenever something does occur, they can use someones tragic loss as an opportunity to make political hay.

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Vor,

The reason would be transparency. Not every action, during an investigation or punishment, is openly apparent to the civilians. Especilly during an investigation. This makes it seem like nothing is happen, ergo - we don't care. But there are valid reasons for this which do nothing to alleviate the very serious concerns of the civilians, but still must happen.

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All you have to do is read the rest of the JT stories to realize that the few crimes that have been committed by US military personnel are not that out of line in terms of the demographic and are also nowhere near as henious as a lot of the crime being perpetrated by the Japanese on each other. Murder is murder and any criminal should suffer the consequences of the crime. But the actions of a few are being blown out of all proportion because they are able to be singled out as being outside the "wa" and therefore open to scrutinity.

Time to drop the hysteria about US military personnel running amok. It might sell newspapers but it really isn't any worse than what is happening in Japan in general. In fact it's probably less awful. It's just easier to single out.

<strong>Moderator: Readers, once again we remind you that references to crimes committed by Japanese are not relevant to this discussion.</strong>

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The American occupation ended in the middle of the 20th century, though some in the U.S. military may still be imagining that they are living the life of Riley in the autumn of 1945.

I'm curious how a Sailor serving on a forward deployed warship homeported in Japan is living the life of 'Riley'. Riley spends most of his time out at sea spending his time there, not much of a life and when he get's to japan he get's curfewed. Riley never got punished for being 'Riley'.

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Moderator: Readers, once again we remind you that references to crimes committed by Japanese are not relevant to this discussion.

Agreed,

Another commentary from Japan Times wouldn't be relevant also.

Many feel that society would be great if we had no need for military forces, but as long as governments don't feel the same way the fact remains that we have to put them somewhere. All of which raises the question: Is it hypocritical to give such disproportionate media exposure to crimes committed by U.S. service members when the data shows that their adherence to our laws apparently exceeds our own?

http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/fl20080226zg.html

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For a balanced view to a topic, also the non-conformist messages are important. Exactly this balancing between good and bad while in a broader context is the problem, which appears in Yokosuka. The best would be to regard each event case by case and judge it. The article still writes about the alleged rape in Okinawa, but to my knowledge it is not proven. In this sense, as police does not continue the case, there is a high probability that this crime did not happen. And then it should not be counted as a crime, but as a story which has a limited credibility.

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Henry Hilton is probably from the "maimstream media" in the US. He decries the US military and what we do, but if he was to go to the Middle East or Russia and make his views known, they would probably chop his head off and throw it down a well. He is entitled to his opinion, but his statements are pretty off. Does he know what measures we have to go through? Is he willing to sacrifice his free time and be in by 2200 and not drink alcohol after certain time periods when a bad journalist writes something that causes everyone to think that all journalists are bad and he has to show them that he is an "ambassador to freedom of the press?"

Mr. Hilton, I suggest you come to Yokosuka, and live the life of a young sailor. See how you like the restrictions put on you because of what someone did, and then write your story. I am sure that you will probably have a different opinion.

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There is no justification for crime. Crime is crime. Being in the military is not an excuse. You're not allowed to run around raping and murdering your civilian allies because you're in the military. Veiled threats against the author of this piece crawl with the lowest forms of cowardice. Too bad if you don't like the bad news. Arguments comparing peace-time Japan to troubled parts of the world are completely irrelevant, and it pains me to see my countrymen volunteering to swim in that sewer. Restrictions placed on innocent Military members are not a backward license of approval for the initial crime, nor do they cancel out anyone else's right to criticize an awful situation that can be remedied from the top. Before someone says I ought to "go to Russia", or "live the life of a U.S. Sailor in Japan", the answers are "No" and "No". I don't have to. And I chose not to entrust my soul to a pentagon that in my lifetime has been synonymous with incompetence and excess.

The kind of thinking demonstrated by the apologists for rapists and murderers is part of the disease which is killing U.S. hegemony in the world. Japan, for its sake, ought to be seriously thinking about how it will nurture and defend its democracy without U.S. help.

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The kind of thinking demonstrated by the apologists for rapists and murderers is part of the disease which is killing U.S. hegemony in the world. Japan, for its sake, ought to be seriously thinking about how it will nurture and defend its democracy without U.S. help.

No, it sounds like the author either hasn't been here long enough or has never been exposed to what the 'REAL' Japan is like.

No, no one in the Military condones these kinds of acts by a few, but it does appear to be systemic. Your outrage should be directed at the Higher up's and their screen processes for bringing troops over to japan..

As I have pointed out on other JT posts, several policy rules were broken when this young "Nigerian" National was assigned overseas on his first tour.

Please direct your outrage, however misguided, at your elected officials.

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telecaster: your bias is getting the best of you. I've yet to see anyone who takes the time to defend the good people of the US Military not express embarrassment over the crimes, provide sympathy to the victims family and condemn on the strongest terms, the few criminals within their ranks who have committed crimes in Japan. In fact, it is these people who have shown a far greater interest in solving the problem than critics of the US-Japan military partnership.

Its fact that crimes are committed by some service members and their families. It is also fact that these crimes represent only a small percentage of crime in Japan. Sensationalized reporting obscures reality and people easily swayed by a dishonest media lose sight that 99.9% of the military serving in Japan have a positive impact on the citizens of Japan and US-Japanese relations.

Its you and your fellow critics who fan the flames of descent for political reasons and contribute nothing to solving these problems. If you are going to criticize at least be honest about it.

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Robin Hood,

No, no one in the Military condones these kinds of acts by a few, but it does appear to be systemic. Your outrage should be directed at the Higher up's and their screen processes for bringing troops over to japan..

Rest assured, it is. We are in complete agreement there.

it sounds like the author either hasn't been here long enough or has never been exposed to what the 'REAL' Japan is like.

Who cares what the "real" Japan is like? There's no excuse for rape and murder! And it should never happen, let alone with the current frequency!

VOR,

your bias is getting the best of you. (snip) Its you and your fellow critics who fan the flames of descent for political reasons and contribute nothing to solving these problems. If you are going to criticize at least be honest about it.

You are making assumptions about my politics, and you've no basis to question my honesty. Take my statement, and replace all references to "the Military" with "Rap Music", "the Catholic Church", or "Politics", etc etc. It all stands up. I am against CRIME, and question those who would justify criminal behavior.

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Close these bases now! No more standing U.S. armies on Japanese soil!

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What about the rest of the gaijin that get arrested in Japan for crimes there Henry, what's your solution for that, or is it easier for you just to jump on the JT U.S. Military Crime Story bandwagon and publish such dribble.

Henry, why don't you spend a weekend at any base and take part in one of the countless community involvement projects, like visiting orphanages and schools for the handicapped, volunteer English teaching out in town, as well as many other projects that have more people involved in one event than get arrested by Japanese Police in one year. Then write another article then again that wouldn't get headlines would it, or allow you to ride the high horse of This Is My Japan.

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Telecaster:

There is no justification for crime. Crime is crime. Being in the military is not an excuse. You're not allowed to run around raping and murdering your civilian allies because you're in the military.

No one in any thread, any posting on any blog, forum, or news article whether is be Japan Today, Okinawa Times, or any other publication in print or on online has in any way made statements or insinuated that being in the military is an excuse for crime of ANY kind. From what nether region did you pull that one from? You should have at least quoted a poster before making a blanket attack such as that since it only serves to show your offense toward the military as an organization.

Veiled threats against the author of this piece crawl with the lowest forms of cowardice. Too bad if you don't like the bad news.

I’ve read all these posts, and not one poster made any such threat veiled or not. Once again a quote from someone would support your argument here.

Arguments comparing peace-time Japan to troubled parts of the world are completely irrelevant, and it pains me to see my countrymen volunteering to swim in that sewer.

Once more where is the reference? I really tried to find one for you in all these posts. Not there! The only reference I can ever say was posted in the past since the Okinawa incident is that Soldiers and Marines are returning from tours in Iraq to Okinawa and Japan to find that they are under restriction due to the actions of one person.

Restrictions placed on innocent Military members are not a backward license of approval for the initial crime, nor do they cancel out anyone else's right to criticize an awful situation that can be remedied from the top.

No one argues with you there. So why the comment? No one thinks that being restricted to base cancels the crime itself. Sorry, but that’s a ridiculous statement not based on any personal knowledge on your part, but just simply posted to hurt people. Shame on you for that.

Before someone says I ought to "go to Russia", or "live the life of a U.S. Sailor in Japan", the answers are "No" and "No". I don't have to.

I defend your right to feel that way. And I criticize those who slam you for making that statement. You don’t have to go to Russia to feel angry at the crime in Japan, nor do you have to live the life of a US Navy Sailor in Japan to express your feelings as an American. "No". I don't have to.” Because someone else went for you. Someone else volunteers for you. In your lifetime, America has gone to an all volunteer military. But from Vietnam back to the revolution, America was a draft military. So when you look at yourself in the mirror in the morning and smirk, thinking ha! Those jerks are stupid to join the military. I am sooo smart for not wasting my life. Let them die for Bush. Try to remember they go so you don’t have to go. They join, because well, maybe they didn’t the advantages you had, or maybe they give up a place in the NFL to serve their country like Tilton did, and gave his life. Guys just like you went to Vietnam and Korea and fought a war they felt no part of. But you get a pass, because so many others will step in your place. No, you don’t have to join, because for now the Volunteer military works, but in the future, it may fail, and guys like you WILL have no choice but to serve. Rather than insult these fine men and women in uniform, just close your mouth and reflect on the choice given to you by their sacrifice.

And I chose not to entrust my soul to a pentagon that in my lifetime has been synonymous with incompetence and excess.

You should have replaced Pentagon with Bush Administration. The Pentagon did an excellent job prosecuting the war in Iraq; Bush decided that the Military should also be Nation builders. That’s not in their job description. The 8th Army was not expected to do so in Japan after WWII.

The kind of thinking demonstrated by the apologists for rapists and murderers is part of the disease which is killing U.S. hegemony in the world. Japan, for its sake, ought to be seriously thinking about how it will nurture and defend its democracy without U.S. help.

I want to praise my fellow long time posters who have had to continually restate the obvious to posts like this one. So let me say it again for this gentleman. No one is acting as an apologist for any criminal or any service member who has committed a crime. You misconstrue defending a man’s right to due process with defending the actual crime he may have committed. Even Mr. Hilton believes a man/woman deserves a fair trial and due process. Japan’s legal system is different than the US, but via a SOFA they agreed to abide by the US definitions of due process. So when that doesn’t happen, naturally posters righteous indignation is expressed in this forum; but not to defend the acts or alleged acts of the individual. Just like I may not agree with every thing you say, I will defend your right to say it. So should you feel the same way as an American.

Japan, for its sake, ought to be seriously thinking about how it will nurture and defend its democracy without U.S. help.

I think you insult the intelligence of the Japanese Government with that statement. Are you to suppose that the JGov has no clue what is going on in their own country? Would you imply that they are incapable of doing anything without the US? Japanese are long term planners, very methodical. They know exactly what they are doing and where their country will be long after the US pulls out. And we will pull out when Japan is good and ready. They don’t need our advice on that.

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I have to agree with Voxman, as well as the great way he said it. Some points that need stated again.

Nobody, in any forum or media, is acting as an apologist for crimes committed by military members. Or crime committed by anyone for that matter. Please point out where anyone offered any excuses for raping and murdering. Would it be safe that you are also including "accused" criminals in there as well?

We have defended his right to due process as defined by United States law, and allowed in the Status of Forces Agreement (and us doing so is in no way an endorsement for any apologists, wherever they may be. Which certainly isn't on JT!). The SOFA is sometimes at odds with what the general Japanese population, as well as some gaijin's, want and there is nothing we can do about that. They, on the other hand, can complain to their representatives and attempt to get it rewritten to suit their needs. UNTIL THEN, the SOFA stands and any ire should be directed to the GOJ.

Most of us agree that the punishment of everyone, for the actions of a few, is not only unnecessary, but actually counter-productive. It creates morale problems that end up with "FTN" attitudes. As the grumbling grows ("Hey, I was at sea when that happened, why should I return to a curfew that I don't deserve?"), the attitude gets worse, and eventually they simply hate the military, and more specifically, BEING IN JAPAN. And then we are gonna ask them to be respectful and behave? Yep, we certainly are and we have a right to. But it is creating an atmosphere of dislike for job and location. That is gonna bite us in the butt.

I haven't seen any threats. Please point them out.

On the other hand, there are things that ARE relevant that everyone keeps saying isn't. I find it hard to fathom why military crime of any type, the SOFA, the chants for the "standing army" to go home are all relevant, but local crime (which is at least a "like" item that can be compared to determine ratio) is not. Only in JT are we not allowed to discuss comparable figures in trying to discuss like items.

Finally, the vast majority of us thing SOMETHING needs to change, and most of us think a good place to start is the overseas screening process. Face it... the "standing army" is gonna be here for a very long time, so why not try and improve existing processes so that they provide the best possible people at all times and at every level?
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I agree with VoXman on each of his points. The moderation on JT has seemed to improve since the format change. This new moderation policy is allowing more open and frank discussion and provides a level playing field for both sides of the argument.

I was surprised to see limitations placed on comparisons between crime by other members of Japanese society when the argument specifically addresses the misperception that crime by US Service members is rampant.

If mention was made of the actual percentage of crime committed by US Service members were included in the article, this important fact would not need to be addressed in viewer comments and we could quit wasting our time defending US troops against the hysteria caused by sensationalized reporting and get on with the constructive argument of how to prevent such crimes in the future.

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Sorry, posters look like my post was removed. So you have to glean was VOR is referring to. Lack of competition is what causes this.

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