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Thousands rally against U.S. military base on Okinawa

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Tokyo and Okinawa—a once independent kingdom that was annexed by Japan in the 19th century.

I for one would love to STOP seeing this. Ok Okinawa was annexed, but do the authors about articles of other countries that took land keep on stating the obvious?

a sizable proportion of Okinawans want a dramatic reduction in their numbers.

DOH! When Futenma gets moved to Henoko a "dramatic" number will be reduced.

-7 ( +11 / -19 )

Okinawa should say we don't want U.S. bases as well as financial support from the central government.

-4 ( +8 / -12 )

"most Japanese value the protection the U.S. alliance gives them, especially in the context of Beijing’s growing regional assertiveness"

Exactly, exactly.

2 ( +11 / -10 )

So instead of Chinese military occupation the people of Okinawa are under US military occupation. Really the bases are for the use of the Americans and do not contribute to the defense of Japan.

-10 ( +14 / -23 )

Really the bases are for the use of the Americans and do not contribute to the defense of Japan.

Really? Tell that to the people of Tohoku and what happened with "Operation Tomodachi". Not to mention all the volunteer work they do with orphanages, the special Olympics, beach-cleanups, volunteer teaching etc etc etc.

None of which anyone will see in the local press or media.

Moderator: Operation Tomodachi is not relevant to this discussion. Weird, the way you go off topic.

-1 ( +4 / -6 )

@Yubaru"Ok Okinawa was annexed"

If people vote for independence, they will solve all current problems, including the existance of U.S. bases on the island.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

It seems as if the Okinawans are an oppressed minority. They pay tax like every other Japanese citizen, but are denied the democratic process. Foreign bases will make them a target.

9 ( +17 / -8 )

Okinawa should become independent from the tyranny of Tokyo.

1 ( +12 / -11 )

People: if you believe US military need to stay in Japan to protect Japan, read an article "Foreign ownership of U.S. debt rises; China reclaims top spot" on JT Business board to see how their relationships are not like enemies,

0 ( +4 / -4 )

There were far more than 35,000 at the event yesterday. The stadium holds 35,000 and that was full, the park was also flooded with people.

The numbers at these rallies just keep on increasing.

Okinawans will not give up until there is some actual change. They are fed up with being continually lied to.

10 ( +23 / -13 )

Okinawans should know the embracing of USA army will not only bring the "danger",the foreign friends will do them good too.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

The plain true is that neither China nor Russia are going to invade Japan or Okinawa. Americans protect their national interests in region, using foreign soil. U.S. puppets in Japanese government actively help them....

-3 ( +9 / -11 )

They should relocate to Kyushu or Shikoku.

There's lots of space and local economies who could use the economic push of having more people and businesses develop there.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Japanese value the protection the U.S. alliance gives them, especially in the context of Beijing’s growing regional assertiveness

Right. Now pick your poison-

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Move the base to the Senkakku's and kill two birds with one stone;-)

2 ( +8 / -6 )

Not! The US has no interests in Senkakkus. It's a Japanese thing-

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Those posters here who belittle and disparage Operation Tomodachi merely to support their own warped anti-US agenda ought to be ashamed of themselves (though I know they're not...) – what did Operation Tomodachi do? Here’s a summary directly from an article in the Japan Times in 2012

The operation, which started March 12 and lasted until May 4, directly or indirectly involved nearly 24,000 U.S. service members, 189 aircraft and 24 naval ships, at a total cost of nearly $90 million. The aid efforts focused on the transport of relief supplies, Self-Defense Forces personnel and equipment, and the search of disaster zones for stranded victims. U.S. forces helped rescue about 20,000 people in the first week after the quake, and worked to restore transportation facilities such as Sendai Airport. Speaking at a July seminar in Hawaii, Matake Kamiya, a professor of international relations at the National Defense Academy, effusively praised the operation, saying the U.S. military presence increased even as other overseas relief teams were fleeing Japan due to fears over the radiation spewing from the Fukushima No. 1 nuclear plant. “Operation Tomodachi has proven the Japan-U.S. alliance can function in an emergency in a well-coordinated manner. U.S. military personnel have proven to the fullest degree they are acting for the benefit of the Japanese people,” Kamiya said. The efforts by U.S. Marines to restore operations at Sendai Airport received particularly high publicity. The tsunami flooded the airport and the damage was so extensive the central government initially wrote off the facility. But the U.S. military, led by about 260 marines, immediately set to work with SDF troops to clean up the debris, and the first relief supplies began landing at the airport just four days after the quake struck. The airport reopened to commercial flights April 13. U.S. forces also helped clear wrecked ports, including Hachinohe in Aomori Prefecture, Miyako in Iwate Prefecture and Oshima in Miyagi Prefecture. But Operation Tomodachi also included measures to deal with the unfolding nuclear disaster at the Fukushima No. 1 plant that may have grabbed fewer headlines but proved crucial. Officials from the U.S. Defense and Energy departments, as well from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, provided on-the-ground expertise, helped monitor food and water for radiation, and provided high-pressure water pumps, fire trucks and protection gear for the efforts to tame the crisis. In addition, the U.S. Navy provided two barges with 1.9 million liters of fresh water that was used to cool the power station’s three stricken reactors. And the Marine Corps Chemical Biological Incident Response Force provided training to SDF troops operating in the vicinity of the facility

So criticize this effort if you like - just understand it clearly highlights your bias and complete lack of credibility and compassion.

Moderator: You're on the wrong thread.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Protesters all have the same placards. This is organized and mobilized people. Who paid the placard and other expenses?

2 ( +9 / -7 )

good on Okinawans. and it should be an example to other Japanese (prefectures) not to be apathetic but to say "no" to the government on issues that doesn't reflect the common good. peaceful protests with thousands send a good signal.

9 ( +13 / -4 )

US should leave Korea and Japan and see how quickly NK and China start playing up even more.

3 ( +10 / -7 )

This is why "change" is good. Change article 9. Let japan step up its own defense. US bases close (like Subic,PI).

If not, all them protesters need to shut-up.

-1 ( +9 / -10 )

Protesters all have the same placards.

And do you know what the placard says?

It says "We will not yield", and that's exactly what they all mean to say.

They won't accept that yet another new US military facility is built on their soil.

And it is perfectly understandable that Okinawa are fed up with being the "dumping ground" for US-Japanese military relations.

0 ( +8 / -8 )

While the United States and its foreign policies are far from perfect, I have say to all those people so busy protesting that they are showing a complete lack of knowledge about history and current affairs globally. If they did. they would appreciate just how fortunate they are having the US base and presence in Okinawa.

When the situation with China's desire to expand its borders and territorial aims becomes confrontational, and China decides to use their military strength to further their goals - as they surely will (just as Japan tried to do in the mid-late 1930's), then all of the people in Japan - and Okinawa, will appreciate America stepping in to assist them. America's presence in Okinawa will enable them assist with some degree of speed, whereas without that presence it would be much harder.

In reality Japan has no meaningful military power whatsoever to defend itself against China - even if Emp Akihito and the Government managed to convince the Japanese people to sacrifice their lives again. And if you think that is not the case, then you are kidding yourself.

China's potential conflict with the rest of the world is becoming a potential reality more and more as every day passes - and Taiwan and Japan are right at the top of China's list.

The leaders in the East had their chance to foresee and control what was coming 10 - 15 years ago, and they chose to do nothing because everyone had an insatiable desire for the cheap products that China produces, and because we all chose to elect people into power that had very limited intelligence. As a result we are all soon going to reap the rewards of the seeds we've sowed.

-5 ( +10 / -15 )

“The government says we are to blame that the issue has stalled for 19 years and they tell us to find an alternative place (for the base relocation). That’s outrageous,”

Not outrageous, 100% fact. Inamine wants the government's money, he wants the US' protection, he wants everything but to live up to Okinawa's part of the agreement -- and they have agreed THREE TIMES to the relocation.

I say enough is enough. Cancel the relocation plan and announce that the US is staying at Futenma, no ifs, ands, or buts. They will be moving Osprey and other vehicles and troops that would have been going to Heneko to Futenma, and yes, the people can thank Onaga, Inamine, and themselves for the troops and base going nowhere. Money given to Okinawa in exchange for housing the bases should also be further reduced dependent on how much the costs of local government blocking has added up.

“We have to remove the risks of exposing Okinawa to war again,” she said."

That's what the American military presence is doing, lady. Notice how there's been no war there since you guys fought against the Allies in WWII?

-1 ( +10 / -11 )

@BertieWoosterMAY. 18, 2015 - 08:53AM JST There were far more than 35,000 at the event yesterday. The stadium holds 35,000 and that was full, the park was also flooded with people. The numbers at these rallies just keep on increasing. Okinawans will not give up until there is some actual change. They are fed up with being continually lied to

That is plenty people ! Placard written "Kusshinai" (We) will not going to yield. Meaning You can not coerce us. Get lost Stay away from our home land Mainland politician, go home. Let Yankee Go home or any cursings accumulated in their mind until now,

4 ( +7 / -3 )

US must have the courage to restore the independence of Ryukyu Kingdom to savage its last bit of honor as a nation for liberty.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

@Nicholas Tee "China's potential conflict with the rest of the world"

It is a myth that justifies the existance of U.S. military bases in Japan. China never invaded Okinawa. Nowadays China is surrounded enough strong opponents (India, Russia) to stop the country in case of possible aggression. During Mao times Vietnam, India, Soviets effectively stopped China's attempts to grab pieces of their land.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

But the economy of Okinawa is based on having that base.

-3 ( +10 / -13 )

Reclaim around Senkakus and move the Marines from Futenma there. The Chinese are reclaiming in disputed area west of Palawan, the Philippines too. Time to think out of the box. Problem solved.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

If the US military bases alone protect Okinawa, why hasn't China invaded the Philippines? They would make some fine bases and they are wide open to invasion. They have no real air force, army or navy. So the US protecting Okinawa from Chinese invasion is nonsense.

-4 ( +9 / -13 )

But the economy of Okinawa is based on having that base.

After kicking off the base like neighboring Philippines, Okinawa economy will become like roaring tigers of Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong. Okinawa is very poor in natural resources like Singapore. However it is strategically located for maritime trade and logistic Hub as Singapore. If Singapore can become third richest nation as purchasing power parity, Independent Okinawa will make it too.

Beijing’s growing regional assertiveness, a sizable proportion of Okinawans want a dramatic reduction in their numbers.

Many Okinawans do not buy the theory of Beijing will occupy Okinawa. Unlike Japan and US, China has never colonized Okinawa. They have got plenty of opportunities in the history.

Sizeable propotion of Okinawans not only want to reduce the numbers but also they want the complete military free zone which has fresh air, clean water, no air craft noise, pollution, no traffic jam and no single serviceman.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@Aaron Lloyd BrummettMAY. 18, 2015 - 11:23AM JST But the economy of Okinawa is based on having that base.

''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''''

There are more bases in Okinawa Prefecture than rest of entire Japan. How come Okinawa is the poorest Ken in Japan, there are 45 more kens. Not base. Many bases. And poorest

6 ( +8 / -2 )

the economy of Okinawa is based on having that base.

And it has the weakest economy in the whole of Japan. It would seem lots of bases taking up prime land, disrupting traffic and creating noise (and other?) pollution = a strong economy is an economic theory that has been proven not to work. Maybe it's time to try basing the economy on something else?

1 ( +9 / -8 )

In reality Japan has no meaningful military power whatsoever to defend itself against China - even if Emp Akihito and the Government managed to convince the Japanese people to sacrifice their lives again. And if you think that is not the case, then you are kidding yourself.

Japan, an island nation with the second strongest navy in the world. China, landlocked with not much of a navy.

Please tell us the strategy you see China applying in attacking Japan from the mainland. How exactly will that work?

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

@Strangerland

China's "landlocked"???

11 ( +11 / -0 )

smith

Cancel the relocation plan and announce that the US is staying at Futenma, no ifs, ands, or buts. They will be moving Osprey and other vehicles and troops that would have been going to Heneko to Futenma, and yes, the people can thank Onaga, Inamine, and themselves for the troops and base going nowhere.

This is one of the least democratic things I have ever seen.

"It doesn't matter if you want these bases or not, you are getting them." Wow, what a thing to tell citizens of a democratic nation. Horrible.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

Amazing. Nearly 20 years. And in the meantime, the U.S. has continued to use Futenma. Consider that some of the U.S. servicemen at Futenma weren't even born when this process started.

Not to belittle the issues involved, but it is a little absurd when one steps back and thinks about. To put in perspective, in the same amount of time, Japan went from the end of WW2 in '45 to hosting the '64 Olympics and commencing service of the Shinkansen.

What I do know is that there is never going to be a perfect solution, particularly when the parties involved have competing objectives. At some point, though, a decision does have to be made and people just get on with it. Regardless of the decision. But that said, for any decision, there will likely be repercussions.

At this point, regardless of the outcome, no one will likely be happy. One party may get a better outcome than another party, but even there, I can't help believe that it will be a pyrrhic victory.

Who knows?! Maybe I will still be reading about this in another 19 years, when I will be in retirement!!

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@lucalast: I believe China has been labeled landlocked because northern, western, and southern China were not faced with Ocean, Just eastern side faces seas. It is a large country in Asian Continent and has been mentioned as landlocked in geography reference books.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

China's "landlocked"???

Oh, that word didn't mean what I thought it did.

I guess my statement should be revised as:

China, a mainland country with not much of a navy.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

yamashi: "China never invaded Okinawa."

And you have the US and its alliance with Japan to thank for that, first and foremost with its bases in Okinawa.

Strangerland: "China, landlocked with not much of a navy."

Ummm... 'landlocked'? That's pretty illogical.

"Please tell us the strategy you see China applying in attacking Japan from the mainland. How exactly will that work?"

If China got a foothold in the islands they have ample ships to carry weapons batteries that would take out any air support Japan has, as well as navy. Troops ships would follow. The problem, of course, would be getting to the islands to begin with, given said air support. China has some threats to counter this, but at the moment they are too rare and would be the prime targets, and if lost it would be game over. But the point is, the islands are key -- and they would be even more threatened without the US in Okinawa.

-7 ( +7 / -14 )

If China got a foothold in the islands they have ample ships to carry weapons batteries that would take out any air support Japan has, as well as navy.

It's the 'if' that needs explaining. They'd have to get past the Japanese navy.

1 ( +5 / -4 )

If China got a foothold in the islands they have ample ships to carry weapons batteries that would take out any air support Japan has, as well as navy.

It's the 'if' that needs explaining. They'd have to get past the Japanese navy.

1 ( +4 / -4 )

Good on them

Okinawa should say we don't want U.S. bases as well as financial support from the central government.

They could probably manage without it, after they convert the land the bases occupy into tourism ventures. Okinawa was getting along just fine until Japan and the US started meddling

0 ( +5 / -5 )

In reality Japan has no meaningful military power whatsoever to defend itself against China - even if Emp Akihito and the Government managed to convince the Japanese people to sacrifice their lives again. And if you think that is not the case, then you are kidding yourself.

I was going to take your comment seriously until you said this...so ignorant lololol. No I'm not kidding my self when i think that's not the case. Not the same government in power and a completely different time period cut it with that irrelevant argument/theory that the Japanese populace in this century would do such a thing.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

@Strangerland

Agree re the two nations' navies relative strengths, but the concern for me is China's nukes. It would only take one to level Tokyo and I seriously doubt the USA would react in any significant way militarily. Japan just ain't worth it.

@Toshiko

Seriously, geography texts refer to China as "landlocked"? I weep for the English language....

You might as well say Italy's an island because it's surrounded by sea on three sides.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

For the one who feels China would never invade Okinawa. Ignorance is bliss. Look what they do to their own people and to think for 1 minute they would not invade Okinawa IF they thought it would advance their agenda is dumb.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

We have to remove the risks of exposing Okinawa to war again, she said.

Perhaps America should let Okinawa/Japan have what she wants. A bigger Japanese military. Check. US military leaving Okinawa and moving to anywhere outside of Japan. Check. Japan being completely responsible for her actions, with no US support. Check.

Obviously, there would be economic and political ramifications worldwide, so this is not going to happen, but just from the viewpoint of protecting Japan and all those who think they'd rather have the US presence gone, I'd like to see them get their wish.

Exposing Okinawa to war part...that would be caused by Abe's plan for a military build up, and not the US bases in Japan. But what the heck, blame the US bases for everything, because peaceful, prosperous Japan came to be as militaristic, poor Japan was defeated by you know who.

There are those who think Japan is Japan, and Japan's been ruined by American influence, and the bases in Japan are almost purely for the American good. The American viewpoint is maybe a bit more appreciation would be appreciated. Either way, if Okinawa wants American gone, listen up Tokyo, follow suit, just get rid of the American presence, and build your military to your Abe heart's desire.

Give 'em what they want, and let history be what it becomes. And if it fails, just revise. Easy squeesy.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

@Jerry TheDissenter "they would not invade Okinawa IF they though it would"

You are making lots of assumptions.

@smithinjapan "And you have the US and its alliance with Japan to thank"

You are wrong, plain and simple. China has no intentions to invade Japan mainland, Okinawa, Taiwan or Philippines. Note that there are no U.S. bases on Taiwan and Philippines.

-4 ( +5 / -9 )

Yet Tokyo recognizes a tiny rock with a population under 2000. Or is there a plan to annex Niue?

Restore Ryukyu.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

They're people out the Okinawa prefecture to participate. Therefore this assembly can't be called an opinion of Okinawa-ken people. There are people of left wing radical for a participant group. In other words, it's the purpose to make democracy collapse. A participant is announcing at 35000 people, but this isn't right. We're about 16500 of about half actually.

参加しているのは、ほとんど沖縄県外の人たちです。よって、この集会は沖縄県民の意見とは言えません。 参加者団体には、左翼過激派の人たちが居ます。つまり、民主主義を崩壊させるのが目的なのです。 参加者は35000人と発表していますが、これは正しくありません。 実際には約半分の16500人程度です。

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

yamashi: "You are wrong, plain and simple."

No, actually. You cannot prove that whatsoever. You CAN prove, however, that Japan has not been invaded while the US has been there.

"Note that there are no U.S. bases on Taiwan and Philippines."

Note that Taiwan is geographically the closest nation to Japan after South Korea, hence with the bases on Okinawa there is no need for there to be bases on Taiwan. And the reason the US does NOT build bases there, besides having them already in Okinawa and there being no need, is because they don't already have them there (ie. like with Japan after the war, before China built itself up) and deciding to put them there would most certainly mean war. As for the Philippines -- too far to wage war, and the US presence, once again, is in the way.

So, once again, you can thank the US presence in Okinawa for the peace that has lasted since WWII. Why else do you think Abe is so keen to INCREASE ties with the US while declaring his desire to change article 9 and give Japan the ability to wage war? because they would be far more threatened without the US being where it is.

-4 ( +8 / -12 )

Japan needs to understand that freedom is not free.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

@smithinjapan "No, actually. You can not prove that whatsoever"

Smith, you should realize that U.S. bases were established to protect solely U.S. interests in Asia Pacific region, not Japan let alone Taiwan or Philippines. Real life shows that USA were unable to protect Georgia in 2008 or Ukraine recently. Furthermore, when small Kyrgyzstan had showed a door to personnel of U.S. base, they simply left. Yet nobody invaded Kyrgyzstan. You, perhaps, feel enormous love to Americans but it has nothing to do with real interesrs of Okinawa people.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

Stop this embarrassing propaganda about a "China threat" for Japan. China isn't a threat, it's an opportunity for everyone. In Europe also ordinary people like me are understanding it, I think, for this I'm happy Italy joined AIIB. Okinawa people are right.

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

So, once again, you can thank the US presence in Okinawa for the peace that has lasted since WWII. Why else do you think Abe is so keen to INCREASE ties with the US while declaring his desire to change article 9 and give Japan the ability to wage war? because they would be far more threatened without the US being where it is.

Perhaps, but those people who suffered from Agent Orange will be cursing it. http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/07/11/national/agent-orange-ingredients-found-okinawa-military-dumpsite/#.VVl3kvAprcQ Not only do the Okinawans have to put up with dumped chemicals, they also have the noise from military aircraft, as well as the occasional rape by military personnel. If the US truly respects the democracy that it proclaims its preserving by keeping its troops in Okinawa - then it should respect the wishes of those same people who clearly want it ended. (In Okinawa)

2 ( +5 / -3 )

It is ok.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I wonder what will happen if they actually get their wish? They won't know what to do. Maybe they can protest the lack of bases to protest against.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

I wonder what will happen if they actually get their wish?

I suspect they'd convert the land into tourism usage - and become a thriving hub.

-1 ( +5 / -6 )

To Nicolas Tee

While the United States and its foreign policies are far from perfect, I have say to all those people so busy protesting that they are showing a complete lack of knowledge about history and current affairs globally.

I'm not sure what gives you this idea but yes, we do know.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yubaru (May. 18, 2015 - 07:18AM JST) says:,

When Futenma gets moved to Henoko a "dramatic" number will be reduced.

That's the hype the U.S. side, and Tokyo at that, is making. 70 percent of the base land south of Kadena Air Base would be returned if Futenma were relocated to Henoko in Nago City. But did you know that the lands promised for return will be returned on the strict condition that replacement sites be provided within Okinawa? Futenma is a typical example of that.

The only exception is the West Futenma Housing Area (51 hectares), which was returned with pomp and circumstance on March 31. But since the total area of bases south of Kadena is 1,629 hectares, that accounts for only 3 percent.

Aaron Lloyd Brummett (May. 18, 2015 - 11:23AM JST):

You seem to have been brainwashed to believe "the economy of Okinawa is based on having that base." That is a naive view on your part. There's an increasing number of people who believe and opine that U.S. bases are more a hindrance than a help for Okinawa's economy. Please read "Economics of U.S. base redevelopment sway Okinawa mindset," run on The Japan Times: May 17, 2017.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

After kicking off the base like neighboring Philippines, Okinawa economy will become like roaring tigers of Taiwan, Singapore and Hong Kong.

Sizeable propotion of Okinawans not only want to reduce the numbers but also they want the complete military free zone which has fresh air, clean water, no air craft noise, pollution, no traffic jam and no single serviceman.

You forgot to mention rainbows and unicorns.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Okinawa doesn't need to defend itself against China because, China would gain NOTHING from doing so.

There is NOTHING in Okinawa for China. Thanks to the US military, Okinawa is still pretty poor.

In fact, I don't see China doing any attacking anywhere.

It is, however, doing a lot of business and its economy is looking MUCH healthier than the USA's or Japan's.

Maybe that's the problem.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

Strangerland - China is not landlocked. Mongolia is. Please get a map. As far as Navies go:

USA

China

Russia

United Kingdom

Japan

Also, China is at #2 in the world in military spending at $171 billion which is almost three times that of Japan's which comes at # 10 in the world at only $59 billion dollars. China would have no problem with Japan at all. They are hungry, Japan is lazy. It would not be much of a contest. Frankly, if you move the bases you are going to have major problems with China. They would love it. And I am sure that they are loving these short-sighted protests. There is nothing that they would like better than to see the US bases go. The bases must stay in place until the relationship between China and its neighbors has been fixed and China stops flexing her muscles in the South China Sea. These protests are naive at best. But that is what happens when you raise a group of people on the sole idea that war is wrong and they do not have to take any personal responsibility for their nation's defense. These people bite that hand that protects it. 50% of me wants to see Japan suffer the consequences of such foolishness at the hands of the Chinese due to their arrogance and ignorance, while the other 50% knows that such a thing would be disastrous at best.

0 ( +6 / -6 )

Strangerland - China is not landlocked.

I guess you missed this above:

China's "landlocked"???

Oh, that word didn't mean what I thought it did.

I guess my statement should be revised as:

China, a mainland country with not much of a navy.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

yamashi: "You, perhaps, feel enormous love to Americans but it has nothing to do with real interesrs of Okinawa people."

Wrong on both counts. I have no love for the military at all, and you can see that in any posts regarding US military actions around the world (in particular the invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan), save for the base issue. And I have the interests of Okinawans very much at heart when I say I don't wish to see them bowing to a Chinese flag.

As for the US bases, they were established because the US and the allies conquered Japan, which had declared war on them in the first place. When Okinawa was generously given back to Japan, the bases were kept there because, yes, in part, it protected already established US interests in the region, and not exclusively because it did so against China, which had become a rising power.

The bases are there to stay, whether you like it or not. You can thank people like Inamine for the base staying longer in Futenma, if not permanently as it now should, instead of moving further out the way where the complaints about noise would be addressed. You made your bed, my friend. You lie in it.

-3 ( +5 / -9 )

Restore Ryukyu

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The US should leave Okinawa and let them be "independent" again. In less than a year, Okinawa would have the poorest economy in the Pacific, even less money than they have now, and all of the people working on the bases would be on unemployment. I wonder who would pay for all of that? How could Okinawa even pay for its own health care, let alone everything else.

This place is not some "paradise", it is a collection of concrete buildings with lousy roads with weeds growing all over the place.

By the way, maybe you should look at some pictures of Futenma in 1967; just the base with no houses there. If the Okinawans did not want the noise and 'danger' from an air base, why did you move there?? If the base is moved up north, the exact same thing would happen.

And BernieWooster " There is NOTHING in Okinawa for China. Thanks to the US military, Okinawa is still pretty poor. (Really, all of that money that flows into Okinawans pockets and the US makes them poor. Here is an idea for you, go work in a Chinese sweatshop and see how much you get paid.)

In fact, I don't see China doing any attacking anywhere. (Right, just ask Vietnam and the Philippines how China is treating them)

It is, however, doing a lot of business and its economy is looking MUCH healthier than the USA's or Japan's. (Again, Bernie, you really need to read up on what is going on today; the Chinese economy has been stalled for the last two years whilst the American one is the only STABLE economy in the world. Try checking into the financial markets and see where people are putting their money.)

-1 ( +9 / -11 )

@Tired of Whiners! Great points. Me, too. I am tired of whiners. If the USA left Okinawa they would be whining to Tokyo and they would suddenly become more Japanese than anything.

-3 ( +5 / -9 )

@Tired of Whiners and sdluv. All great points. Me three-

-3 ( +5 / -8 )

Tokyo and Okinawa—a once independent kingdom that was annexed by Japan in the 19th century. I for one would love to STOP seeing this. Ok Okinawa was annexed, but do the authors about articles of other countries that took land keep on stating the obvious?a sizable proportion of Okinawans want a dramatic reduction in their numbers. DOH! When Futenma gets moved to Henoko a "dramatic" number will be reduced.

Next time you moderators want to censor a post do a person a favor and at least get the encoding right along with at least trying to keep the original (proper) grammar and spelling in place too.

Bye bye this thread too.

-4 ( +4 / -8 )

@strangerland. That's okay, we all make those mistakes. Sorry for my reaction to your mistype. Anyways I do have to disagree about one point though as well. China does have a a very up and coming Navy that will very soon rival the U.S. Navy in the region very shortly and this is very worrisome for Washington and all of the other ASEAN members! China's actions in the South China Sea are extremely agrressive because it knows that the USA will not do anything to provoke a war between the two nuclear powers and that there is not really a navy besides the USA that can rival it or wishes to go to war again with China. I really think it is just a matter of time before the USA will be pushed into either getting confrontational with China, which will not happen or the USA will have to leave the region, something that the U.S. greatly feared. China is just a big bully on the playground that knows there is nothing that can be done to stop it from stealing the candy from its neighbors.

2 ( +4 / -3 )

Tired of Whiners (May. 18, 2015 - 04:00PM JST):

The US should leave Okinawa and let them be "independent" again. In less than a year, Okinawa would have the poorest economy in the Pacific, even less money than they have now, and all of the people working on the bases would be on unemployment. I wonder who would pay for all of that? How could Okinawa even pay for its own health care, let alone everything else

You also seem to believe Okinawa depends on U.S. bases economically. Seems U.S. service members are taught that way in their first orientation when they were deployed to Okinawa. Poor soldiers. That, among others, is indoctrination and brainwashing. I suggest you too read "Economics of U.S. base redevelopment sway Okinawa mindset," run on The Japan Times: May 17, 2017.

Population is growing in the southern part of Okinawa as the result of higher birth rate and migration. A hermit becomes a town, which in turn becomes a city. The more grows a population, the more migrate rural people to a city, attracted by jobs and city life, thus resulting in a population decrease in rural areas, especially in remote islands.

But land is scarce in Urasoe and Ginowan, the prime land being occupied by U.S. bases. Where then do newcomers live? They have to live in land adjacent to bases, fully knowing that bases are hazardous, because land is much cheaper in such places.

1 ( +9 / -7 )

@Noble713

Economic GDP is based on never ending creation of consumer goods but ignores the importance of nature. Okinawans have a different dream than being another tiger economy but first they need to be given the responsibility to make choices for the land.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Noble713 May. 18, 2015 - 06:17PM JST:

I don't know what part of the U.S. or the world you come from, but your post certainly betrays your intimation that you are very diligent and highly educated. Shame on you.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

Tired of Whiners,

This place is not some "paradise", it is a collection of concrete buildings with lousy roads with weeds growing all over the place.

It doesn't look like you ever get off base.

Try it some time.

It's a very beautiful island.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

If it wasn't for the U.S., Japan would be named East China Islands! The ignorance and complete stupidity of people here is sickening, crazy is so thick here you can shovel it with a spoon. Any teachers here looking for part time (1 day) work at a school near Kawasaki area?

-3 ( +4 / -6 )

David T. Adair May. 18, 2015 - 09:07PM JST:

If it wasn't for the U.S., Japan would be named East China Islands!

On what basis can you say that? If there's no basis whatsoever on which you make such a claim, then you are simply mongering a China fear. On the other hand, isn't it an undeniable fact that Japan, Okinawa in particular, is being occupied by the U.S. military right now, so that the island chain from Nznsei Shoto to Hokkaido be called U.S. Pacific Islands in East Asia?

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

I say remove all U.S. military presence from Japan so China can swiftly move in and set up shop. Let North Korea 's trigger finger apply a little more pressure to the button. Japan doesn't have either the resources or population to defend itself. It'll be a campaign of kamikazes all over again.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Mr. Noidall says:

... remove all U.S. military presence from Japan so China can swiftly move in and set up shop.

So his stance is that the status quo rearding the U.S.military presence, especially that in Okinawa, must be maintained indefinitely to prevent China from moving in here and set up shop? And the Henoko relocation must be implemented without a hitch? Then, for him, rallies such as held in Naha on Sunday are nothing but an obstacle hampering the bilateral agreement on the relocation?

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

I suspect they'd convert the land into tourism usage - and become a thriving hub.

Yeah, sure. Just wave your magic wand, and, presto, we are now a thriving tourism hub. It works like that all the time. I see lots of places that are unused, have cane fields, etc. on Okinawa. Why don't they start there? Let me guess, they are afraid all the crime-committing military people will cause trouble so they need them all out first.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

@Tsutomu Nakasone

They're people out the Okinawa prefecture to participate. Therefore this assembly can't be called an opinion of Okinawa-ken people. There are people of left wing radical for a participant group. In other words, it's the purpose to make democracy collapse. A participant is announcing at 35000 people, but this isn't right. We're about 16500 of about half actually.

投稿ありがとうございます。 沖縄反米デモに関しては私もまだまだ勉強中なのですが、こと極端な反日反米リベラル色の強いJTにて、本土ないし中国韓国北朝鮮からの活動家が米軍撤退、果ては沖縄の独立をけしかけているという事実を指摘して下さったのは心強いです。 JTに常駐している投稿者の殆どは日本語の読み書きが不自由で、APやロイターなどによってリサイクルされた情報を全てと思っているきらいがありますが、どうでしょうか。 もう少しバイリンガルの日本人投稿者が増えてくれると嬉しいですね。

If any posters here read and write in Japanese, Google "沖縄 デモ 実態" to find out what the Okinawa protests are really about.

Join Anti-U.S. Base Protest and Get Paid Up To $300 + Lunch https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Rsv0mimJ9O4

1 ( +2 / -1 )

@Alex80

Stop this embarrassing propaganda about a "China threat" for Japan. China isn't a threat, it's an opportunity for everyone. In Europe also ordinary people like me are understanding it, I think, for this I'm happy Italy joined AIIB. Okinawa people are right.

The more I learn about Okinawa's truth, the more I find out that ordinary Okinawans do 1. find peace and friendship with the existance of the U.S. bases (of course, not all Okinawa residents feel that way, I know), 2. feel more threatened by Chinese ships appreance 24/7 everyday illegally poaching, fishing, and crossing boarders, and, 3. find it extremely bothersome that are protesters from mainland, China, and Korea gathered to speak their opinion as "ALL OKINAWA'S" opinion.

I am still learning about Okinawa/U.S. base issue but there are many articles and documentaries published by journalists and independent media. You will see among protesters are flags of Japan Revolutionary Communist League (Revolutionary Marxist Faction,) Revolutionary Communist League National Committee, Japan Teachers' Union, other radical socialists/communists groups of Japan, China's Communist Party, Korean political organizations. Why Chinese and Koreans care? (Besides, it is illegal for foreigners to join a political demonstration or protest in Japan.) Some are paid $20 to $300 to join the protest daily.

Many protesters voiced their "anti-Ospray" "anti-U.S." opinion on media interviews as "Okinawa's Voice," but with no Okinawan accent. Japanese can tell the slight nuance even when people with dialect try to speak the Tokyo (standard) way. There are many videos on YouTube where you can find some Okinawans' true voice.

You and I don't live in Okinawa, and of course, each Okinawa people have different opinions over this issue. That's why, I find it extremely important to pick up as many voice as possible instead of swallowing a big picture with someone's hidden political agenda. Again, many journalists and media have posted many documentaries and interviews online. It is unfortunate that many posters here don't read and write in Japanese but many videos are available for all of us to watch.

Local Residents v.s Anti-Base Activists (from Mainland)

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=98V1LBgbdqI

Interview with Henoko Fisherman

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=omcciwCiUfo

Chinese and Korean Activists in Futenma

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=6EBM2umPUpQ

0 ( +2 / -2 )

toshikoMay. 18, 2015 - 08:45AM JST People: if you believe US military need to stay in Japan to protect Japan, read an article "Foreign ownership of U.S. debt rises; China reclaims top spot" on JT Business board to see how their relationships are not like enemies,

Obviously if you truly believe that China is not your enemy then you need to read about Tibet. Ask the people how liberated they feel everyday since being overtaken by the friendly neighbor with a big smile.

The best solution is no solution. Mr.Onaga is only interested in one thing. big construction projects in Nago and being pushed by Ozawa and Hatayoma who owned mega real property near the proposed upgrade to the Henoko project.

Build more bases

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

@bjohnson: Japan is not near tibet.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

bjohnson23

Obviously if you truly believe that China is not your enemy then you need to read about Tibet. Ask the people how liberated they feel everyday since being overtaken by the friendly neighbor with a big smile.

-So you care about Tibetans, and not Okinawans? This is a common hypocrisy among pro-base people.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Yeah, the entire American military should leave Japan and Korea.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Oh that Ja[anese writing indicate that the writer mentioning he is still studying about Okinawa anti america demo. So, he is honestly telling that he does not know yet/ So, I will make my opinion regarding demo, depending JT article. and Bertie;s comment of his eye witnessing.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Americans the local Okinawa economy is not your problem. Really the American bases make Okinawa a target of the PRC. The Americans use it as a base for their spy planes and places to put their surveillance equipment. The Americans want much more than a new airfield, they want a new port to host an atomic carrier and new storage base for all of their needs. Perhaps they will close Sagamihara to please the people of Tokyo. Do not worry about Okinawa and again the Chinese have not invaded the Philippines which has no military. Lastly the Americans see the people of Okinawa as subjects and not people. They are so condescending that they make me sick. This new airfield will kill off the last coral reef and I bet they will demand more land for all of the new bases. American military are at best liars. Okinawa lost to the USA by right of conquest.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@ NYtoday MAY. 19, 2015 - 12:50AM JST

Obviously you have no idea what is going on in Okinawa at the moment. Okinawans all across the political spectrum are united against the construction of a new US military facility in Henoko as never before.

Okinawans are completely fed up with the way they have been deprived, cheated, pressured, bribed, threatened and by how their wishes have been constantly ignored since they became a US military colony after the war. It seems as if every attempt to go on like this by Tokyo and the US military will just unify them even more and strengthen their resolve to stop this ill-fated "relocation" project.

The talk about communists and payed protesters is just a display of your lack of meaningful arguments.

Btw we're not living in the McCarthy era anymore so saying "communists!" with a trembling voice doesn't scare the hell out of anybody, except maybe for some tea-party hillbillies for who going to the local Walmart is the most diverse cultural experience that they will have in their lives.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

@toshiko and @bam_boo

I would much rather be humble and say I am still gathering information for my extensive multi-perspective research on this subject than pretend know-it-all like you people. As I stated in my previous comments, there are different opinions among Okinawans on how Okinawa should thrive with or without the US bases. This matter isn't as simple as your mind. . By the way, who are you to represent the whole Okinawa? And how arrogant are you to ignore some real Okinawa people's voices that differ from your ideal Okinawans' opinions? Stop using them to express your ideology. What needs to be heard isn't your opinion but theirs.

Google "fence clean project okinawa" and see how local Okinawans and the US soldiers and the base officers hand in hand clean up the sticky, ugly mess anti-base protesters have left. They have been doing this every Sundays, rain or shine.

Stars and Stripes OKINAWA: the Fence Clean Project (English)

http://okinawa.stripes.com/base-info/volunteering-and-fence-clean-project

Local Okinawans volunteered to clean the mess left by protesters

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=2Tu8y2IKkOg

Within few hours after the cleaning, another vandalism done by "anti-base" activists

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=b-wQWc1l8TE

All I am saying is there are many voices in Okinawa, and many are from outside of Okinawa, with different political agenda, and against local Okinawans will. You cannot deny those videos, which capture all the action the locals have taken to voice their true opinion.

And bam_boo, if you cannot logically rationalize members of CCP protesting against the US base in Okinawa, please refrain from commenting further. Please Google for images and videos of them and their Chinese flags before you ask me for source as well. There are too many to hide.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

When Okinawa was generously given back to Japan, the bases were kept there because

Given back? Okinawa was never historically a part of Japan. The bases there serve no useful purpose beyond providing a dumping site for Agent Orange, and a justification for military expenditure

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

@ NYtoday

By the way, who are you to represent the whole Okinawa?

I'm not a representative of Okinawa... I'm merely conveying facts that you can find all over Okinawa, in the news papers here, on the internet and while talking to people.

The vast majority of Okinawans (depending on which survey you look at somewhere between 75% and 90%) want either a clear reduction of US military presence or no US military at all and oppose the construction of a new military facility in Henoko.

Your smokescreen talk about "different voices" (of course there are different voices in Okinawa and nobody denies that) mainly serves your own twisted narrative and can't hide the fact that you are ignoring the clearly expressed will of the Okinawan people.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

NYtoday (May. 19, 2015 - 12:50AM JST):

I watched the Internet blogs you referred to and was surprised to find how 180 degrees different their view was from mine. The covering of Channel Sakura was especially mind-boggling.

It was a report by Mr. Satoru Mizushima, chairman himself of the company that runs the channel, about his visits to the venues of sit-ins and protests against the Henoko relocation plan, one at Camp Schwab in Henoko and the other at USMC Air Station Futenma. His criticism of protesters is very myopic and dogmatic, though, putting too much importance on minuscule matters.

For example, pitching vigilant tents along base fences and parking cars in vacant lots not reserved for parking violate law, he says. He also points out a double standard held by protesters who protest against the reclamation of coastal waters off Henoko while keeping mum on a similar reclamation work that is going on for the expansion of Naha Air Port.

He accuses protesters of committing vandalism by tying anti-base ribbons on fence wires at the gate of the Futenma Air Station.

He may be right in pointing out these facts, but he should see the problem from a broader perspective. He must know that Okinawa is still under virtual occupation of the U.S. military 70 years after the end of WW II. That's a hard fact no one can deny.

As I posted on other threads many times, Futenma sits on stolen land requisitioned illegally in violation of international law (Article 46 of Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land). So the Henoko relocation means base laundry, exonerating the U.S. from one of the serious crimes it committed during the Occupation period. It also means pepetuation of the sttus quo and the suffering of Okinawa from base hosting indefinitely.

As for land reclamation, the case for Naha Airport and that for Henoko are two different matters. The expansion of Naha Airport is motivated from a domestic necessity but building a new base in Henoko is done in order to satisfy the U.S. military's demand. Note that the relocation plan has nothing to do with deterrence. Can you tolerate such absurdity?

1 ( +4 / -3 )

.

China isn't a threat, it's an opportunity for everyone.

It's an opportunity for big businesses, but it'll ship off the jobs of ordinary workers. "Made in China"

And China is a threat to its neighbors - that's why its neighbors are asking for help.

Like any nation, China is not magnanimous - they have their own ambitions and national interests, mainly to supply it's humongous population with resources - the bigger their population gets, the more resources that need to keep up. That's the internal pressure that forces them to strike outward. (Why do ya think they desire to claim all of the South China Sea?)

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Mostly government workers forced to attend. Others are paid to attend ¥5,000 to ¥10,000. There's not much creditability with this group.

-6 ( +0 / -6 )

There's not much creditability with this group.

Which group are you talking about "True Okinawa"? The Okinawan population?

I think there's not much credibility with someone calling himself "True Okinawa" and spreading completely unverifiable rumors that discredit the Okinawan people.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@lostrune2"And China is a threat to its neighbors-that's why its neighbors are asking for help"

You know, never heard any ask for help from India, Kazakhstan or Russia. They are all neighbors of China.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

@yamashi

You know, never heard any ask for help from India, Kazakhstan or Russia. They are all neighbors of China.

Russia is well-known for maintaining a "First Use" nuclear weapon policy if its borders are violated, so they don't need any outside security assistance. Kazakhstan is in Russia's sphere of influence. The Chinese aren't going to poke the Russian bear without a good reason.

India's border with China is uniquely defensible due to the Himalayas....and they have nukes....and they have a sizeable (if somewhat underfunded) military and an equally-large population base to supply conscript infantry if needed.

But pretty much every other country in South Asia doesn't have any of these advantages.....so yeah, they are more than a bit paranoid about having a growing industrial power with modernizing military might and a hunger for resources near them. Because they still remember how the Greater East Asia Co-Prosperity Sphere was anything but, and don't want to see it repeated.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Noble713, you are correct. I would add that neither Russia, nor China have clear and solid intentions to invade Okinawa. Therefore, U.S. bases are provocative and useless. Besides, as it has been said before, in case of sudden military conflict with any of regional powers, those bases will be annihilated by multiple strikes in few minutes. Modern ballistic missiles and hypersonic cruise missiles allow to do it. Remove bases and turn Okinawa into tourist resort like Saipan and guests from China, Russia, South Korea will rest and spend money there.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

The fundamental problem is that the United States is trapped in a strategic nightmare situation of it's own making: the need to maintain the supremacy of the Petrodollar. So yes this means that the US will pursue an interventionist and overbearing expeditionary military posture. In this case, Okinawan bases serve to hem in the one nation in the Pacific theater most capable of disrupting the dollar. However, I think that the US-Japanese military alliance is in Japan's interests as well.

We can agree that China has no imminent plans to invade/occupy various Japanese island chains. But China's economic growth is slowing. If they suffer any serious domestic instability as a consequence they will be quick to distract the populace with an external enemy, with Japan as the obvious target given justifiable historical grievances. The weaker Japan's security situation is, the more likely it is that a diplomatic or even military conflict could escalate into a net loss for Japan (whether that's offshore mining/fishing rights, actual territory, etc.). In which case it's beneficial to have the large and capable US military willing to share the burden for Japan's defense.

@voiceofokinawa

As for land reclamation, the case for Naha Airport and that for Henoko are two different matters. The expansion of >Naha Airport is motivated from a domestic necessity but building a new base in Henoko is done in order to satisfy >the U.S. military's demand.

But you DO recognize the hypocrisy of "destroying the coral is bad!.....unless we get rich off of it", don't you?

And are you suggesting that the Prefectural government/population should have final authority over how its land is utilized?

What is your position on the existence of Narita Airport? The farmers of Chiba Prefecture staunchly opposed having their farmland seized and turned into an airport. But the national government possesses the right of eminent domain and forced the issue. Is Okinawa somehow exempt from the same standards/procedures of national authority that the rest of Japan's Prefectures operate under?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@lostrune2"And China is a threat to its neighbors-that's why its neighbors are asking for help"

You know, never heard any ask for help from India, Kazakhstan or Russia. They are all neighbors of China.

First, I didn't say all the neighbors. As for those specific ones: Russia is powerful that China can't bully; Kazakhstan has nothing that China wants; India and China still has an unresolved border dispute (why hasn't it yet resolved after all these decades, if they're so neighborly?):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sino-Indian_border_dispute

https://theconversation.com/china-and-indias-border-dispute-rises-to-dangerous-new-heights-32125

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Noble 713:

The fundamental problem is that the United States is trapped in a strategic nightmare situation of it's own making: the need to maintain the supremacy of the Petrodollar. So yes this means that the US will pursue an interventionist and overbearing expeditionary military posture. In this case, Okinawan bases serve to hem in the one nation in the Pacific theater most capable of disrupting the dollar. However, I think that the US-Japanese military alliance is in Japan's interests as well.

The U.S. is blatantly coercing Japan to build Futenma's replacement in Henoko in order to maintain the supremacy of the Petrodollar? For this purpose, the U.S. maintains its domineering military forces in Okinawa?

Probably, you are frank enough to be telling the whole truth about this excessive U.S. military presence in Japan, in Okinawa in particular.

But that is in sheer contradiction to what the Japan-U.S. Security treaty says about why the U.S. forces are stationed here. The USFJ brass keep telling the Japanese people that troops under their command are always ready to sacrifice their life to defend Japan. Poor Japanese taxpayers believe them and pay about 6 billion dollars annually to the U.S. coffers as a host-nation support ("sympathy budget") to have bases maintained and operated without any hitch.

Let's Washington stop duping this nation.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

@ Noble713 MAY. 20, 2015 - 09:42AM JST

But you DO recognize the hypocrisy of "destroying the coral is bad!.....unless we get rich off of it", don't you?

You are touching a sensitive point here, but please note that there are quite a lot of environmentally conscious Okinawans who oppose both Henoko and the the new runway at Naha airport, though it is not the majority.

And please note that it was the central government who first installed a carrot and stick policy which used big, meaningless but very environmentally destructive construction projects as a means to corrupt and divide Okinawans. With government money useless roads were built through the jungle and hilltops were flattened to create completely unprofitable pine plantations.

And guess who started fighting against those projects first? Some of the people who are also at the forefront of the anti-Henoko coalition now. For them democracy, citizens involvement and sustainable, environmental friendly development is inseparable and I hope that eventually a majority of Okinawans will understand that those strategies possess the key to a prosperous future for Okinawa and not the corrupt Kokuba-Gumi-Kariyushi-Gumi-etc.-Gumi construction mafia, who if provided with enough money would do almost anything.

And are you suggesting that the Prefectural government/population should have final authority over how its land is utilized?

I believe what Okinawans are suggesting is that for decisions with such a massive impact on the lives of the people there ought to be some kind of democratic process involving the citizens. Is that so difficult to understand? In any truly democratic nation it would be impossible to treat citizens of an entire prefecture (state, region, etc.) in way Okinawans have been treated up to now.

What is your position on the existence of Narita Airport? The farmers of Chiba Prefecture staunchly opposed having their farmland seized and turned into an airport. But the national government possesses the right of eminent domain and forced the issue.

As I have mentioned in another thread Narita Airport actually exposes the double standards in Japan and Okinawa. Have you never seen the farm in the middle of Narita's 2. runaway? The government did its best t threaten, scare, corrupt, intimidate and divide the opposing farmers, still a proper interpretation of the law allowed farmers to keep their land. So Narita actually is a perfect example for how Okinawa would look like if the U.S. had respected basic human rights in Okinawa. U.S. military facilities would be spotted with private land enclaves. It has been said over and over again the U.S. illegally confiscated a large part of the land U.S. bases are built on and it is important to keep this fact in mind when discussing the matter.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Noble 713:

In 1979 the Okinawa Prefectural Government announced a plan to build an airport by reclaiming the coral-rich waters off Shiraho District on Ishigaki Island. Upon hearing it, the Shiraho residents took no time to oppose the plan and they were soon joined by environmentalists at home and abroad. The chief organizer of the anti-Shiraho Airport, an acquaintance of mine, asked me to join him in the campaign.

I dipped into water a little bit, telling the organizer that, if you were to be seriously involved in any environmentalist campaign, you would eventually have to come to face off the U.S. military because they are the most berserk forces of natural (and cultural) environment.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

I wish Mr Onaga all the best in his efforts

0 ( +1 / -1 )

China and Russia have no intention of having war with Japan. However in the event of limited war with the US, Okinawa is first to receive explosion of conventional missile or nuclear bombs on their city. This liability is inevitable because Okinawa is hosting the foreign base with ulterior motives. It is best to remember that it was the US which nuked Japanese, not the Chinese or Korean. Therefore, there is a high probable that atomic bomb is transited whether through ship or plane using the US base in Okinawa.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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