politics

Abe says Japan will stick to plan to relocate U.S. base to Henoko

68 Comments

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Tuesday that the Japanese government will stick to its plan to relocate the U.S. Marine Corps Air Station at Futenma to the less populated Henoko area in Okinawa.

Abe was speaking in an Upper House question and answer session on his policy speech last week.

Japanese Communist Party leader Kazuo Shii criticized Abe for ignoring the wishes of the Okinawan people and the local government in Okinawa, TV Asahi reported. Shii said it is unthinkable in a democracy for a government to disregard the feelings of local residents on such an important issue.

Abe said the plan to relocate the base to Henoko is the only realistic option and said the central government will move ahead with the plan while trying to win the understanding of the prefectural government and local residents.

In another development Tuesday, NHK reported that Okinawan Gov Takeshi Onaga said he will order an investigation into whether underwater drilling in the seabed for the base at Henoko have been conducted outside the designated area, resulting in the destruction of coral reefs.

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Having committed to the Americans and staked his administration in large part on its pro-America stance, this is not at all surprising for Abe to do this. Also ignoring Okinawan wishes is not surprising for Abe.

8 ( +12 / -4 )

the central government will move ahead with the plan while trying to win the understanding of the prefectural government and local residents.

Abe doesn't care at all about the understanding of the local residents. If he would the project would have been cancelled long ago.

The way Abe and the LDP are ignoring the clearly and democratically expressed will of an entire prefecture is starting to remind me of a fascist government.

If Tokyo keeps going like this it will damage the relation between Okinawa and Tokyo for generations to come and could push Okinawa on a path towards independence.

4 ( +12 / -8 )

Also ignoring Okinawan wishes is not surprising for Abe.

Kind of hard for Abe and just about every PM before him to know just what Okinawa wants. Just because an anti-base governor gets elected does not automatically mean that things grind to a halt and stop(as some people here seem to think).

Imagine if governments that changed hands suddenly made all the previous leaders agreements null and void just because they were against the policies or prior decisions that were made. It would be chaos.

Tokyo made and agreement with the prior duly elected governor and the agreement is legally binding. They did nothing wrong and now Onaga is looking for what ever angle he can to get the construction stopped.

And another thing, for years local communities around the bases held anti-base rallies or made announcements against this or that about the bases, seemingly to say they are against them, then they demanded money and contracts for local companies doing work with the bases because they host them, and then the prefecuture elects a pro-base gov. (really cutting things short there) long story short, Okinawan's have shown throughout recent history that THEY don't know what they want.

That is a fact. (Now watch the anti-base folks jump in here and start using the protests outside of Henoko as a sign that ALL okinawan's want the base closed and construction stopped.....the protests are miniscule at best, local media makes them sound like armageddon, but in reality it's a tiny group of folks hogging on the air time. If it was SO major it would make national news, it doesnt, so that says quite a bit too. Don't be fooled by the reality, people here are apathetic to the situation at best.)

1 ( +9 / -8 )

Okinawa wants all American bases out of the islands. It is impossible to accept. National policy preempts local government wishes. Okinawans should know how poor they were before. If they think they can do without the support of the central government, go independent from Japan.

-10 ( +8 / -18 )

Why does Abe think the Henoko plan is "the only realistic option"? He and his cohorts in the central government always give two reasons for this: (1) A hazardous Futenma must not be fixed at the current site forever; (2) the U.S. military's deterrence must be maintained.

It's true that Futenma sits in a densely populated residential area and so it's a most dangerous U.S. air base. But if you insist that, Kadena Air Base must be removed first and foremost because accident rates there far exceed those of Futenma.

As for the deterrence issue, it's become a consensus among experts that the Marine contingent (about 3,000 members of the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing) does not have to station in Okinawa, especially in view of the fact China's newly developed ballistic missiles have Okinawa in their target range. Talking about deterrence is thus nothing but a farce.

Despite this, why is Abe so insistent upon the Henoko plan? The answer is: He fears a U.S. pressure to relocate Futenma's facilities to the mainland. Remember Marine bases were significantly reduced in mainland Japan in the 1960's when anti-American and anti-U.S. base demonstrations stormed there in violent forms? These Marine bases were relocated to Okinawa, that was still occupied by the U.S. military at the time. Can Abe accept the idea of re-hosting these Marine bases once again in mainland Japan? NEVER.

That's the reason why the Abe administration repeats the stock phrase that Henoko is the best and only solution.

4 ( +11 / -7 )

Keep up the good work Prime Minister. What a great man he is.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

Woot!!!

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

voiceofokinawa,

Exactly. If Abe's American handlers forced him to relocate the bases to Kyushu or Mainland Japan, they would make such a fuss of it that he would be out of a job.

At the same time, he is on a very sticky wicket because there is so much anti-base sentiment in Okinawa. Let's not forget that Onaga was elected because he is fiercely anti-base. He was chosen by the voting public of Okinawa, not the other three.

With all this pressure, he is probably going to have another nervous breakdown and disappear from PMship for good.

I hope it's soon.

4 ( +9 / -5 )

Keep up the good work Prime Minister. What a great man he is.

Keep ignoring the will of the people. Keep promoting your military agenda. Yes, a great man.

5 ( +10 / -5 )

Kind of hard for Abe and just about every PM before him to know just what Okinawa wants.

Of course every PM knows exactly that Okinawans want significantly less or no US bases. That's why the central government has designed a filthy carrot and stick policy to make Okinawans dependent on money from Tokyo. Okinawans know very well that Tokyo threatens to withdraw money if they dare to elect the "wrong" candidate. This happened on several occasions, for example just before the pro-Tokyo governor Inamine was elected in 1998.

To get an idea for how this carrot and stick policy looks like in a small town we can take a walk around Henoko, the center stage of Tokyos anti-democratic policies. There are several huge public works projects including a supersized "cultural exchange plaza", an "Okinawa National College of Technology", a "Global Oceanographic Data Center", an "Employment and Human Resources Development Center" and more in a village of less then 1800 inhabitants. It is exactly the same kind of anti-democratic carrot and stick policy that Tokyo implemented in the underdeveloped areas surrounding nuclear power plants.

(really cutting things short there) long story short, Okinawan's have shown throughout recent history that THEY don't know what they want.

In regard to the US bases Okinawans have been very clear and consistent all along the way, but in regard to their island economy Okinawans have been torn in between the desire to get rid of the US bases and the need to feed their children.

To try to make Okinawans look like they don't know what they want is disrespectful and insulting.

6 ( +8 / -2 )

Defense of Japan should be implemented by multiple sites across the "mainland" of Japan, focusing on coast guard and fighter jet, bomber and submarine capabilities. But the Japanese government is quite happy to leave 75% of US troops in Okinawa, which has 0.6% of the landmass. (In 1996 the bilateral Special Action Committee on Okinawa issued a plan to reduce the US.military's presence on Okinawa. One of the major facets of the plan was a proposal to close Marine Corp Air Station Futenma within seven years, if Marine units could be transferred to an alternate site on Okinawa). It's time Abe expired like a magazine subscription.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Given the choice between PM Abe and the Okinawa Governor and cabinet members who are in the hip pocket of Communist sympathizers I'll take Abe hands down.

-5 ( +5 / -10 )

The base relocation plan also comes with the removal of about 8-9000 military personnel from Okinawa (as well as their families, and other smaller bases). This is what Okinawans want. Furthermore, the US is not going to unilaterally leave Okinawa.

People seem to want to blame the Japanese government, but the US OWNS those bases due to the terms of the Okinawa reversion treaty and cannot simply be asked to leave or move. Lastly, the hands of the Japanese government are tied, security wise, because of article 9. You can't have it all. Its a crappy situation, but gradual redeployment (what the Japanese government is attempting) is the only way, and criticizing a plan to remove over a third of the troops stationed in Okinawa is not productive, at all.

1 ( +6 / -5 )

Henoko or Futenma, let the public decide -- but let it be known it's one of the other, and their choice which. The US is not leaving.

-7 ( +6 / -13 )

It is pure hypocrisy, Abe style. He ignores the wishes of local citizens and government in this case and listens to their wishes when it comes to restarting nuclear plants.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

People seem to want to blame the Japanese government, but the US OWNS those bases due to the terms of the Okinawa reversion treaty and cannot simply be asked to leave or move.

No the US does not own the bases, whomever or where ever told you this is 100% wrong. Stop spreading false information please.

The US government uses the Japanese land leased from Japanese landowners. The land is Japanese and like it or not if the Japanese chose to not renew the leases the US would be forced to leave. (Remember the Philippines? Doubt it but that's the case)

The landowners are paid a heft sum of cash for the leasing of their land.

Okinawa's bases are different than mainland in that the bases are on private vs public property.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

Im really not sure what the answer is, and I think like most things, the answer is not that simple.

Perhaps in the past I would have said why are they there at all, but given China's increasing military presence around that part of Japan, on top of territory claims and so on, and the lack of a Japanese "military", and the local economic benefits that must surely come from having the base there, of which at least the airfield has been there since 1945, so this isn't something that has popped up recently and probably older than the majority of the residents in the area, though looking at aerial photos it does appear to be right in the middle of the population, and the proposed area much less so.. though I doubt the people in the new location are all that happy about it either.

There are a lot of things to consider on top of the fact that, quite understandably the locals are concerned about noise, safety and so on.. I genuinely don't know how you would go about managing all of these things.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

So the wishes of the Okinawan people mean nothing then? Thought so

1 ( +8 / -7 )

Can someone please drag Abe 4 kilometers out to sea and let him try to find his way back on his own (as is being done with the protesters by the Japanese coast guard).

I suspect that even if he does get the Henoko base constructed he'll lose Okinawa in the process.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

"Prime Minister Shinzo Abe said Tuesday that the Japanese government will stick to its plan to relocate the U.S. Marine Corps Air Station at Futenma to the less populated Henoko area in Okinawa."

Abe is simply stating the obvious. All the protest noise aside, did anyone actually think it would ever be otherwise? This has been a done deal for a decade, only more so now that we have a defense-minded chicken-hawk steering the ship.

Let's not forget what brought down previous-prime minister Hatoyama's rather inept reign (you remember, the guy dubbed "Soft-Cream" by a contemptuous Yasuhiro Nakasone?): he went to Okinawa and flippantly promised everyone he'd scrap the plans for the base...then had a talk with the Americans...came out, said he had failed and then promptly retired. Lesson learned.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

You can't say Okinawa hasn't been clear and obvious when it elects an anti-base Governor.

Okinawa can hardly secede either since it would then need the US to stay to keep China at bay!

The only chance is for neighbouring prefectures to also pick up the slack, but that won't happen. Japan federation isn't much of a fraternity these days. The only option is within.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

since it would then need the US to stay to keep China at bay!

What makes you even think China has any designs on Okinawa? I doubt they would ever invade anyway. All this "fear of China" talk is simply to justify US and Japan military expenditure

3 ( +9 / -6 )

What is the real secret reason why the Japanese dont want the US bases there? Left wings, nationalist etc...come on out with it. Its ok its time now; 2015 let it be known, let it loose.

-4 ( +2 / -6 )

What is the real secret reason why the Japanese dont want the US bases there?

Many of the Okinawans (annexed by Japan in 1879) don't want the bases there. The majority of Japanese are either indifferent or supportive because they only have to host a few of the bases. If the situation were to be reversed one might find public sentiment in Japan to be closer to that of Okinawa now

5 ( +7 / -2 )

The locals should be grateful!

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

While all attention is being paid to the Henoko relocation, there has been another nuisance going on in Okinawa involving the unwelcome move of the U.S. Marines. Tokyo has been constructing 6 landing zones for MV-22 Ospreys in lush forests around Takae village in northern Okinawa Island -- not very far from Henoko. Two of them will be offered to the Marines prior to the official date of hand-over

For years vigilant sit-ins have been going on there day and night as in Henoko. Okinawa is thus forced to undergo one misfortune on top of another. Everyday participants in the protests may be small in number as in Henoko but they have the majority of Okinawans' full spiritual support.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

First off, America should just let go and tell Japan the ball's in your court now, protect your own house.

Second off, Okinawans should put Tokyo in their line of fire and not the US. Then, they should vote to secede. Protect your own house.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

people seem to forget in this discussion, that the current location of that base is just ridiculous. look at pictures of futenma. its in the middle of a city. the priority of all okinawans should be to relocate that base, as soon as possible.

and i totally understand they don't want a new base, or any base at all. but maybe they should fight that battle over another issue, after this base is relocated away from so many civilians

1 ( +2 / -1 )

If Okinawa seceded, China would flood it with money, not to mention Chinese tourists and businesses. Then, once they have firmly established "an interest" in Okinawa, they would apply political pressure on Okinawa to support China in international politics and territorial claims.

I could actually see Okinawa doing financially well out of the deal, but at a great political cost. Ultimately, they could even end up with Chinese bases where the Americans once were.

So, no, seceding is not a good idea.

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

I know Okinawans who grow real quiet about this issue, if they protest at all (some are pro-base), whenever a Chinese sub tries to sneak through the Ryukyus, and one constantly contradicts himself saying, "We don't need the US military!" in breath and then screaming about how the US "MUST protect them if China were to attack".

It's also amusing to watch those who complain about the dangers of the Osprey having nothing to say about Japan's order for them from the US to be used in the SDF.

-6 ( +2 / -8 )

You can't say Okinawa hasn't been clear and obvious when it elects an anti-base Governor.

Ok where are you from? I will guess that elections get held where you are from, and I'll ask you this question:

When an opposition candidate gets elected do all previous agreements made by the former elected official get automatically reversed?

Obvious answer: NO

Welcome to Okinawa. Anyone who thinks that just because a (currently anti base) new governor got elected evverything changes. That is not how things work. He is attempting to find any little thing he can to stop the construction, BUT the prior agreements are solid. He has almost nothing to do to stop it and he can complain all he wants but things are not going to change just because he wants it.

People need to get that through their heads.

People also need to get through their heads that Okinawa is a part of Japan, and it has a responsibility to participate in the collective defense of the country. The government is easing the burdens on the island and a HUGE portion of the land WILL be returned when the base gets extended and Futenma moved.

People need to use their heads and not their hearts.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

The solution that was never looked at was building a new base on the disputed island of senkaku. It's possible that it could be done and take out two birds with one stone, 1. it would close the base and keep one from expanding, to a place where there are no anti-base protesters to begin with, 2.end the dispute once and for all on who has ownership. The US says the base is to secure the Pacific from possible intrusions, well putting that base at the throat of the intruder is one way to keep an eye on things.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

The solution that was never looked at was building a new base on the disputed island of senkaku. It's possible that it could be done and take out two birds with one stone, 1. it would close the base and keep one from expanding, to a place where there are no anti-base protesters to begin with, 2.end the dispute once and for all on who has ownership. The US says the base is to secure the Pacific from possible intrusions, well putting that base at the throat of the intruder is one way to keep an eye on things.

I suppose you expect China to pay for the construction too right?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

No the US does not own the bases, whomever or where ever told you this is 100% wrong. Stop spreading false information please.

While the US does not formally own the base land, the Okinawan land owners in return don't "own" their land as well, as they don't have the power to decide on what they want to do with their land.

Large parts of the US base land was illegally stolen from its owners after WW2 against international law and even after the reversion to Japan Okinawan landowners never had a say. Landowners only had a choice to take compensation money or not. Odd kind of private land ownership isn't it?

So Yubaru is omitting some important details if he/she says it's "privately owned". On paper yes, not in reality.

It is this kind of experience of being without proper rights and being treated like 2nd class citizens, first by the US and then by Tokyo, that Okinawans are completely fed up with. Some posters here don't seem to understand that Okinawans are fighting against Futenma AND Henoko, because they are fighting to gain back their dignity and freedom. They have been part of filthy deals without having a say since WW2 and they don't won't to take part in another one of those.

With 18% of their main island being US military land Okinawans have been living in-between dangerous US bases for generations and the you-don't-have-and-never-had-a-choice hybris of power that Abe (and prior to him the US military and previous PM's) is displaying towards Okinawans would instigate a desire for resistance in any sensible human being.

If Abe says "Japan will stick to plan to relocate U.S. base to Henoko" Okinawans can only say "we will stick to our plan to regain our dignity, our rights as equal citizens of a democratic nation, and break free from this hybris of power arrangement we have been thrown into against our will".

5 ( +5 / -0 )

While the US does not formally own the base land, the Okinawan land owners in return don't "own" their land as well, as they don't have the power to decide on what they want to do with their land.

No kidding that is what leases are.

Large parts of the US base land was illegally stolen from its owners after WW2 against international law and even after the reversion to Japan Okinawan landowners never had a say. Landowners only had a choice to take compensation money or not. Odd kind of private land ownership isn't it?

Stop....instead of making comments trying to stir the pot sit down a second and think about what you are saying. What international laws in 1945 prevented the US from taking possession of Okinawa?

Well.......

So Yubaru is omitting some important details if he/she says it's "privately owned". On paper yes, not in reality.

No I omitted nothing and the reality, paper or otherwise is the landowners are compensated for the use of their land. The land IS privately owned on that there is NO argument. You attempt to obfuscate the topic, nothing more nothing less.

Get your facts straight next time.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

onagagamo,

The locals should be grateful!

For what?

The chance to take a hit for the mainland like they did in WWII?

But in fact, there is no danger of an attack from China. The biggest "threat" from China is to the US economy.

Let's not forget that the US debt to China is HUGE and economically, China is winning where the US has lost.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Just like Narita Airport was built and opened to the benefit of the majority over the objections of a small but vocal minority, so will the transfer of USMCAS Futenma to Heneko.

-8 ( +0 / -8 )

@Bertie Wooster I encourage you to bet it all on the roulette wheel that is the Shanghai stock market. China has a joke of an economy: 100% manipulated for the party.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

I know Okinawans who grow real quiet about this issue, if they protest at all (some are pro-base), whenever a Chinese sub tries to sneak through the Ryukyus, and one constantly contradicts himself saying, "We don't need the US military!" in breath and then screaming about how the US "MUST protect them if China were to attack".

It's also amusing to watch those who complain about the dangers of the Osprey having nothing to say about Japan's order for them from the US to be used in the SDF.

In your imagination, smith.

There exists 'contradiction' simply because they are two sets of people.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Given the stratigically important location of Okinawa, there will be bases there whether they have US or Japanese troops on them.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

What international laws in 1945 prevented the US from taking possession of Okinawa?

While nothing could prevent the US from "taking possession of Okinawa" you might have heard of the Hague Convention, which prohibits the confiscation of private property during and after war. The US has ratified the convention in 1902.

Laws and Customs of War on Land (Hague II); July 29, 1899 Annex to the Convention SECTION III. -- ON MILITARY AUTHORITY OVER HOSTILE TERRITORY Article 46

Family honors and rights, individual lives and private property, as well as religious convictions and liberty, must be respected. Private property cannot be confiscated.

So the land was taken in violation of international law from its rightful Okinawan owners.

No I omitted nothing and the reality, paper or otherwise is the landowners are compensated for the use of their land. You attempt to obfuscate the topic, nothing more nothing less.

So please tell us where my information is not factual. You are the one obfuscating the story by trying to make it look like this was a normal lease of land process, which it wasn't.

If you believe Okinawan land owners are in possession of their land, Yubaru, then please explain to us the due process if a land owner wants to make use of the land he "owns".

3 ( +4 / -1 )

For what?

Grateful that they have the US to protect them. Do you really think the Boy Scouts of the JSDF would cut it in real combat?!

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Yubaru (Feb. 18, 2015 - 07:01PM JST) says "Okinawa is a part of Japan, and it has a responsibility to participate in the collective defense of the country." In the same vein, he can say "Hawaii is a part of the U.S., and it has a responsibility to participate in the collective defense of the U.S." Sounds reasonable.

There are a lot of fallacies in Yubaru's argument, though. First of all, what does he mean by "the collective defense"? It means the 18% land mass of the island must be given to foreign contingents for their unrestricted use of it as training bases. When a base becomes dilapidated, you must build its replacement on land reclaimed from the sea that is designated by the local government as the Rank No. 1 category for preservation.

Hawaii is a part of the U.S. Then, does Hawaii have no right to say anything about similar agreements between Washington and a foreign country that were struck over their heads and against their wishes?

Cool off!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Better Henoko than being stuck in the status quo, it seems

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

The United States was attacked by terrorist on 9/11 so I think that Japan should send Japanese troops to the United States to help defend the United States. So, about 50,000 Japanese troops should be stationed in the US with 75% of them placed in Hawaii. The new Japanese bases should take up the main corridors along H2 and H1 and should be spread out from Pearl Harbor all the way through to Waipahu. The American bases should be downsized even more so that the Japanese bases can take up most of the defense of the United States in the Pacific region.

Of course, the Japanese solders and their families should be given special license plates and drivers license, they should get a cost reduction in car insurance and inspections. Also, the Japanese military police should be required to be at all accidents, incidents or anything involving the Japanese soldier, civilian or their families. Like in Okinawa, the United States would not have a say as which Japanese soldiers, civilians or family members would be able to be stationed in Hawaii.

If a Japanese soldier rapes or causes a problem, they should be sent immediately back to their base and sent back to Japan. Americans living in Hawaii would just have to suck it up since these Japanese soldiers are their to protect their freedom. Who knows, the Japanese soldiers could be protecting Hawaii from the Chinese?

If Hawaii does not want the Japanese bases then who cares if they speak Chinese in a few years!

Since this would be a large Japanese base, there would also need to be a large ammo storage facility the size of Kadena ammo dump. The Japanese troops should be able to fly anything anywhere at anytime over Hawaii since the Japanese soldiers would be there to protect the American freedom...oh the sound of F4's/F15's...the sound of Freedom.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

diveit,

Your post drips with sarcasm. I chuckled at reading it. But, of course, in order for that to come true, Japan must be a big military power, like a pre-war empire, which I hate to see.

lostrune2,

You say: "Better Henoko than being stuck in the status quo..."

I'm interested in how you have come to this conclusion. That's what Tokyo has been preaching: Henoko is the best option. But I think I have refuted that argument in my postings above. My stance is: Futenma must be returned without any strings attached. Read my postings and give your reason concretely why I am wrong.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

But I think I have refuted that argument in my postings above.Futenma must be returned without any strings attached.

Your argument holds no water since it is just the ramblings of someone who wishes dreams could be reality. We don't live in a Utopian world, and you are not the PM here.

Your arguments are biased and do not take into fact that there are international treaties in place with regards to the US-Japan Security agreement.

You dismiss them and refuse to accept the facts.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Your argument holds no water since it is just the ramblings of someone who wishes dreams could be reality

What you call "ramblings" Yubaru is an expression of the will of the Okinawan people.

It is up to you to say I don't care what the people of Okinawa want, but it is a display of your disrespect for Okinawans and for democracy.

Your arguments are biased and do not take into fact that there are international treaties in place with regards to the US-Japan Security agreement.

There are no multilateral international treaties about US military facilities in Okinawa, Yubaru, only bilateral ones between Japan and US.

And please note that the treaties regarding the status of Okinawa and the US military facilities there were made in secret and without consulting the Okinawan people.

Some of the contents of the treaties just came to light recently and revealed how Okinawans were cheated on. When Okinawa became a Japanese prefecture again in 1972 it was already decided that Okinawans would not have a say about crucial political decisions regarding their prefecture.

With carrying the burden of 75% of the US military stationed in Japan, Okinawa became a kind of military colony for Japan without having been asked.

You dismiss them and refuse to accept the facts.

While it is a fact that the hybris of power that Abe and the US stands for is destroying a precious part of Okinawan nature, it is also a fact that a vast majority of Okinawans reject the current so called "relocation plan" and the construction of a new military facility in Henoko and that Abe and the US are ignoring the clearly expressed will of an entire prefecture.

Something unthinkable in the US or in any other serious democracy.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yubaru,

I asked you in my posting of Feb. 19, 2015 - 10:56AM JST: "Hawaii is a part of the U.S. Then, does Hawaii have no right to say anything about similar agreements between Washington and a foreign country that were struck over their heads and against their wishes?"

You didn't answer it. No, you couldn't answer it. Instead, you pick on me for my posting directed at lostrune2 (Feb. 19, 2015 - 05:22PM JST).

I asked lostrune2 to give his reason concretely why my stance on the Futenma issue is wrong. Since you volunteered to answer it for lostrune2, I ask you to read my posting dated Feb. 18, 2015 - 08:18AM JST and argue against it logically and rationally. Don't simply dub it as a rumbling.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The U.S. would not agree to give Okinawa back to Japan unless it retained full control of the bases. The Japanese Govt. really has no say, all they can do is what the U.S. wants. The agreement that for every facility that is closed a new one must be provided ensures a perpetual U.S. presence. A good example is the return of Awase Golf Course. In order to get Awase Golf Course returned the Japanese Taxpayers had to build the U.S a new 18 hole course to replace it even though the Military has another 18 hole course on Kadena Air Base and a 9 hole course at Chibana and a 9 hole course at Okuma. The following is from the web page of the new Japanese Taxpayer built U.S. Marine Golf Course called Taiyo Golf Club.

Although it replaced a legend in the form of the Awase Meadows Golf Course, the rich and historic legacy lives on at the new Taiyo Golf Club. The name Taiyo is derived from the Japanese kanji "sun", the literal translation is "Golf Club of the Sun." Taiyo is located in Uruma City near the Kurashiki Dam in central Okinawa. Golf awaits on a visually stunning 18-hole layout that unfolds across 247 acres of rolling fairways, lush wetlands, scenic vistas, dramatic elevation changes and large, well-manicured greens with subtle breaks. So reserve your tee time, gather your clubs, and ready yourself for a satisfying new experience at what we believe is among the finest U.S. Marine Corps golf facilities in the world.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@jPnnot4lifw: Which state of USA Okinawa belongs?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@toshiko: If Okinawa was a part of the United States, the Okinawan people would have more rights than they do now.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@japan4lifeFEB. 20, 2015 - 12:24AM JST @toshiko: If Okinawa was a part of the United States, the Okinawan people would have more rights than they do now

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

How you analyze? Which state? Are you talking of right to be shot down? .

0 ( +0 / -0 )

japan4life: @toshiko: If Okinawa was a part of the United States, the Okinawan people would have more rights than they do now.

US occupies 20 pct of Okinawa land.

toshiko's squeezed into the 15.5 percent of NV the feds don't own.

http://assets3.bigthink.com/system/tinymce_assets/944/original/federal_lands.jpg?1422311293

Who Owns the West? Federal Land as a Percentage of Total State Land Area (excludes trust properties)

NV: 84.5, AK 69.1, UT 57.4, OR 53.1, ID 50.2, AZ 48.1, CA 45.3 ...

... FL 8.2 ... TX 1.9 ... NY 0.8 ... MA 0.4 ...

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@turbotsat: The island of Okinawa is 463.72 square miles and the state of Nevada is 110,567 square miles. Most of the U.S. Military Bases on Okinawa are in Prime Locations.

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@japan4life

They're prime locations now, but they were farmland back in the day, right? I think Nevada people probably complain a lot about the large proportion of land given over to the feds. That number doesn't even count state and local lands.

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Once in a while Fed Land m tries to sell lamds to our city. we have a lot of emply our land. Fed specify purpose of land usage. No one is interested. Last, baseball fie;d. Just because we watch Angels and Dodgers do not mean we want one. So no one was interested. You never know some skeletons are dug from fed land. Fed lands are too far away from Vegas and other cities. Howard Hughes Co purchased entire one city wheb all private properties were on sale and created to small casino city for Arizona visitors. Probably fed gonna sell some again but no one will buy again. So, I don;t think Fed will buy Okinawa even it becomes on sale. Fed has been trying to sell to our city every year/ It has land in north but billionaires and movie stars live in our city. Not north.

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On January 27, 2013, 144 Okinawa municipality heads, Prefecural legislators and Okinawa constituency-elected Diet members marched in Tokyo streets to protest against the deployment of Ospreys at Futenma and the planned relocation of Futenma's facilities within Okinawa -- that is, to Henoko.

That day, right-wing groups also gathered and counterdemonstrated along the way, shouting at the Okinawa demonstrators with "traitors" and the like. Traitors? They don't seem to understand who in the world are undermining the nation's sovereignty, thus being traitors themselves literally.

They don't understand building Futenma's replacement at Henoko is nothing different from the act of selling sovereign soil or, more broadly, sovereignty itself to a foreign military power.

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Being a strategic enitiy between the Philipines and Iwakuni, will you ever except your fate?

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Jandworld,

The Marine Corps Okinawa has blatantly demanded the durability period of the planned new base at Henoko be 200 years and the utility period 40 years. In other words, their mindset is formed such that they can be stationed here forever.

We feel we are already being occupied by a foreign army with such exorbitant footprint as this. So your intimation that we may be invaded by a third country unless we accept the Henoko plan sounds silly and nonsense.

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Difference between Marine bases in Okinawa and in Orangew county Calif.

Camp Pendleton marines can visit Disneyland and Knotts Bueey Farm. Also Los Angeles Angels game. ' Okinawa Marines want to see ancient Japanese culture can trop tp Iwakuni and walk on Kintai Bridge. Stretch to Hiroshima to see Peace Park. ,

Hope American youngsters will not be assigned to ME dangers.

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Toshiko,

So, in your opinion, the marines should spend more time at amusement parks and game parks as tourists? Near Iwakuni is Hiroshima City, a home of the Hiroshima Carp, to which Hiroki Kuroda, a veteran pitcher for the New York Yankees, made a comeback after turning down a lucrative offer by the Yankees.

Japanese taxpayers must support these marines financially so that they may be model tourists feeling no anxiety about being deployed in Okinawa. They've recently had Tokyo construct a first-class 18-hole golf course, Taiyo Golf Club, in return for an old golf course being closed and returned. Return of a military facility thus means building its replacement in another place, as always.

What's the meaning of all this absurdity?

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voiceofokinawa Feb. 21, 2015 - 05:06AM JST Japanese taxpayers must support these marines financially so that they may be model tourists feeling no anxiety about being deployed in Okinawa.

Japanese taxpayer is getting a bargain. Let's see, Japan's expenditure in defense is meager 1 percent of GDP for how many decades? Compare that to U.S. that is close to 4 percent, and UK at 2.3, France 2.2, Germany 1.4. Japan should contribute more to defense that is in line with other nations.

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Angels needs quality pitchers but it skipped Kuroda. Often Yankees game Kuroda was used to explain what pitching coach or manger wanted to tell other Japanese pitchers of Yankees. We Angels funs wanted Kuroda but... Kuroda came back to Japan and we can not blame him. Too cold in east. I believe touring Japan is better than going to be killed in ME. Are you hoping youngsters get killed quickly? Soldiers pay is vwry low. Let them enjoy life before they get killed.

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@voice: I compared their life/ I did not recommend. It is comparison,. Y=The comparison is not an opinion/

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sfjp330,

True, Japan's military spending has been 1 percent of its GDP for years compared with the U.S.'s perennial 4 percent or over (4.9 percent in 2014). But I think Japan's 1 percent is still too much for a pacifist country that vowed to outlaw war as "a means to settle international disputes involving the state."

Dollar-wise, Japan's defense budget (2013) amounts to $45,860 million, which is not strikingly so different from France's $54,545 million and the UK's $53,298 million. Incidentally, how many U.S. troops are stationed in these countries and how many U.S. bases exist there? How much host-nation supports do they pay to the U.S. coffers?

If you insist that Japan should increase its defense budget in line with other nations, then in the same vein you should recommend other nations, including China, to up their defense-GDP ratio to close to the U.S.'s 4.9 percent. Nonsense.

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Every year, Japan pays to US (now about) 2 billion dollars a year for letting the US Forces to stay in Japan/ (Omoiyari Fund). So, USA will not pull out their ShinChuGun in Japan. Good income for US armed forces. The Omoiyarifund could be distributed to Okinawa but unlikely. I don;t think Any US state is interested in purchasing Okinawa anyway.

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From 2000 to 2015 Japan paid host-nation supports to the U.S. coffers in the amount of $30.6 billion. Housing, utility, water and maintenance costs of bases are covered with this fund. Shopping centers, movie theaters, golf courses and what not are built and operated with this fund.

AAFSS, MWR, MCCS are private businesses operating on bases but the buildings and facilities they use are built and maintained with this fund. Recently-built golf courses for Taiyo Golf Club attest to this.

My assumption is that even though they are private businesses, their executive officers are amakudari officers descending from the Pentagon. Thus, their connection with the Pentagon is tight, secure and inalienable.

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