politics

Gov't takes measures against Okinawa blocking U.S. base work

104 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© KYODO

©2018 GPlusMedia Inc.

104 Comments

Comments have been disabled You can no longer respond to this thread.

"I told Prime Minister Abe that the burdens of national security should be shared by all prefectures of Japan, and asked him to establish a dialogue (between the central and Okinawa governments)," Tamaki said, referring to his meeting with Abe in Tokyo last Friday, their first since Tamaki took office.

Fine, you shared your opinions, and the government disagreed.

This is a cherry picked statement made by Denny, and it makes he come across as a whining child. "I told you so".....

Yet Denny should also be aware he is in the big leagues now, and just because he "said something" does not mean that everything is going to come to a sudden halt either.

-18 ( +6 / -24 )

On Aug 31, Okinawa again retracted the landfill work approval as instructed by Onaga before his death earlier in the month. The prefecture cited illegality in the relocation work procedure and put the base construction on hold.

No, this is misinformation here. The government put the construction on hold, and kept it there after Onaga passed away. The prefecture can not put the construction on hold, it does not have the authority to do so. Making this statement makes it appear that the prefecture has control, it doesn't.

The landfill work was approved in 2013 by then Okinawa Gov Hirokazu Nakaima, but his successor Takeshi Onaga revoked the approval in 2015, citing legal defects in Nakaima's decision. In an ensuing court battle, the revocation was found illegal and Onaga rescinded it in 2016.

This is also a very key point in the fight between the prefecture and national government. Onaga made a promise to abide by the decisions of the court and he reneged on it after he lost. This will also come into play once again IF it ever gets to another court decision. The court will take this and other decisions into consideration and the prefecture will lose again.

The best thing Denny can do at this point is try to be a true politician and negotiate the best deal he can with the national government. He is going to lose in court, and it's his responsibility to look out for ALL the people of the prefecture and not just those in Henoko.

Hiroshi Ashitomi, 72, who heads a civic group, said, "We'll call for international attention (to the problem) in cooperation with the prefecture."

Lastly, this is a pipe dream. Onaga went all over the place, was politely listened to, and then shown the door, as the people he talked with were in fact insignificant and there was nothing they could do.

And if this guy thinks international pressure of any kind is going to influence the Japanese government he needs to start sharing what he is smoking with me. Trying to exert or get international pressure against anything the government is doing is a wasted effort. If Japan doesnt bend on whaling and other issues, does he think they will here? Yeah right!

-16 ( +6 / -22 )

I repeatedly said "Go independent." So long as Okinawa remains a part of Japan, they have to obey to the central government particularly about defense matters. When Okinawa gets independent, they can deal with U.S. directly.

-1 ( +6 / -7 )

I repeatedly said "Go independent." So long as Okinawa remains a part of Japan, they have to obey to the central government particularly about defense matters. When Okinawa gets independent, they can deal with U.S. directly.

I will ask you. While I dont agree with the tactics of Onaga and Denny , they are doing their jobs. What about the people who have been protesting about the runways at Narita?

Should the people of Chiba "go independent" to get their way? Go back in history and that area was an "independent" area so don't they have the same rights?

-7 ( +0 / -7 )

@baruyu, the majority of people in Chiba didn’t vote to stop the Narita expansion. QED. @sensei258, close, but no cigar. No period/full stop.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Japanese democracy at work. If elections don't return the desired results the will of the people will be invalidated.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

YubaruToday  06:58 am JST

"I told Prime Minister Abe that the burdens of national security should be shared by all prefectures of Japan, and asked him to establish a dialogue (between the central and Okinawa governments)," Tamaki said, referring to his meeting with Abe in Tokyo last Friday, their first since Tamaki took office.

Fine, you shared your opinions, and the government disagreed.

This is a cherry picked statement made by Denny, and it makes he come across as a whining child. "I told you so".....

Really, a whining child? There's nothing in Tamaki's statement that sounds as if he's whining.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@yingyank, that isn't the point. The majority of the people of Okinawa did not vote for Denny. The point is that talking about independence for Okinawa is just as ludicrous as my statement about Narita.

Japanese democracy at work. If elections don't return the desired results the will of the people will be invalidated.

This is a misconception as well. Denny got elected, yes, but there is more to the issue than just an election. People seem to think that the "state", in this case Okinawa, has the right to dictate to the national government international treaties, and the needs of security and defense.

Security and defense are under the control of the national government, not the state.

-9 ( +3 / -12 )

@baruyu, what you writing is wrong, and not true.

Denny got 55.1% of the popular vote (396,632) the people of Okinawa ARE the point, you can not dismiss the facts with misinformed red herrings. A majority of Okinawans do NOT want the relocation to go ahead in their prefecture. The people of Chiba have never voted against Narita’s expansion.

6 ( +10 / -4 )

Denny got 55.1% of the popular vote (396,632) the people of Okinawa ARE the point, 

Do you know how many people voted? What percentage of the electorate? The point is that you are taking these numbers to say that the "majority" of Okinawa....

That is disingenuous, the "majority" of voters who actually voted, elected Denny. BUT that is NOT the majority of Okinawa. Nearly 40% did not vote, and for whatever reason, you can not just add that 40% on top of Denny's margin of victory to make a statement that the MAJORITY of Okinawa voted for Denny. They did not.

Denny won the election. Either way though, Denny does not have the authority to dictate defense issues to the national government.

He wants time to get his point across to the nation, and the national government is unwilling to give it to him, as it has been over 20 years, and they are unwilling to wait 20 more, particularly now that the construction is nearly 1/3 completed.

-8 ( +5 / -13 )

Denny does not have the authority to dictate defense issues to the national government.

It's about time they made the local government understand this.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Okinawa is a political pawn these days.

I am beginning to feel like its kind of the wild west in location with Japanese politics.

The issue with the bases has evolved over the years too. From occupation after war to becoming a permanant American Asian base and trying to balance Japanese sovereignty later on and add to that the Okinawa / Japan divide...

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

Yubaru, I'll ask you again, please show us all the politicians who've won the total majority of Okinawa's total population.

Its obvious that none of the posters are attempting to say Denny did that, though you'll try to make it the centerpiece of the discussion. Well, that and type-o's, which everyone makes from time to time, including yourself.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

They (Tokyo) may use mafia tactics against Okinawan people, but they don’t understand about Okinawan history, and after 70 years it is still occupied by America.

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

So, they’ve been complaining for years to get the base moved because it’s currently within a built up area. Then, a new location was chosen, which was originally agreed to. Now, they are still complaining? The US base in Okinawa is there to stay. They had better just get used to it.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

I was actually quite disappointed when I visited Okinawa main Island. It's a bit of a mess in the southern half with poorly planned development, so this isn't really a surprise.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Yubaru - as far as the laws of democracy exist at the moment, a majority of voters means just that - a majority of voters - and this majority voted for Denny who is opposed to Henoko. The fact that about 36% didn't choose to vote, is sad imo, but the result reflects the will of the people who cared enough about the issue at hand to make an effort and create a voice. They have the right to be heard. The silent 36-ers didn't act on their right, so lost any additional voice. If we applied your logic nationally, Abe has no right to rule Japan as he does, because he garnered less than 30% of the eligible vote. Try telling that to the ldp. This is why I believe in compulsory voting.

And Yubaru - I respect your opinions on Okinawa, as I assume you live there and have a 1st hand view and are privy to much more than many of us. However, living locally doesn't always guarantee that ones opinion is right or the only opinion that has a case. My next door neighbours opinions on local politics is way removed from mine. He sees things only his way.

And re Henoko - I'm pretty pessimisstic about any success for the opponents. The might of the the govt and US military looks surely to prevail. The only possible chance, would be for the US to have a change of heart and not demand / agree to the construction for it's own reasons and deploy the forces /base elsewhere. The national govt will never because they are 1) always right & 2) will never lose face.

I suspect this story will gather much more international interest over the coming year(s).

4 ( +6 / -2 )

The deal was made between the US and the GOIof Japan so all they can do is delay the process.

they are not going undo everything they have done up until now!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

While it would make more sense for the rest of Japan to stop taking Okinawa for granted, there's no way Tokyo is going to be able to get other prefectures to take a base.

If Okinawa were independent, it would still need a USA base to thwart China, otherwise join with Taiwan. It can't be about removing all bases from Okinawa as that's never going to happen regardless of the prefecture/independent status

Therefore moving the base to a less dense area makes the most rational sense, regardless of whether Okinawa wants a base with the USA now with Japan or if independent.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Look at that picture. Look at how greedy and stupid officials are ruining a perfectly beautiful place. disgusting.

4 ( +7 / -3 )

Goodlucktoyou:

[T]hey don’t understand about Okinawan history, and after 70 years it is still occupied by America...

With Japan being surrounded by dictatorial hostile nations with nuclear weapons, US military is not going anywhere. Free the people from the dictators, then US bases will be gone in minutes.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

I could be wrong but didn’t they give ¥300billion to the local government a while back and even the most Anti-base guy at the time did an about face?

These politicians only pretend to be concerned about the plight of people when it’s convenient for them, let’s see how they react when ¥¥¥¥ is put in the mix.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

The real discussion should be about whether the US military should be in Japan at all. I think they should just pack up and go.

-2 ( +4 / -6 )

Tamaki has lined pockets from Ozawa, Kan and Hatayoma association landowners in the northern part of Okinawa. What about the mountains in northern Nago that will never be returned and what is left is worthless for building. The raped the mountains and say nothing.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

@baruya, being purposefully obtuse is childish, and far too obvious an attempt in its fumble to misinform, change the subject. The simplest of web searches will give you the answers you crave, but, well, seeing as that may not be your forfeit, a service: Tamaki got 396,632 votes, the most ever in an Okinawa governor’s election. The people of Okinawa spoke, loud, and in a clear majority.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Tokyo has abused and used Okinawa and its people since day dot. They have used it as a pawn and sacrificed it continually for the Japanese and Japan.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Seems pro-relocation people are coming to life the moment the central announced it would take legal actions against Okinawa Prefecture, declaring it would proceed with the reclamation work at Henoko as early as possible. To them and to the government, the result of the recent gubernatorial election doesn't mean anything at all. In other words, democracy is a bs for them.

It's said the government intends to take legal measures under the Administrative Complaint Review Act by arbitrarily interpreting it. As Tamaki points out, the law is for citizens to file complaints against the government, not the other way around. But arbitrary interpretation of law and stomping on citizens' human rights is the government's shtick always.

In Japan, a quasi-democracy, the judicial branch is not independent of the executive branch whereby any legal fights between citizens and the government concerning U.S. bases have almost always been ruled in the central government's favor since Supreme Court Justice Kotaro Tanaka's infamous ruling in 1959.

So we must be prepared for the worst to come.

Defense Minister Tsuyoshi Iwaya says the grand purpose of the Henoko relocation is "maintaining deterrence while reducing the base-hosting burden on the island prefecture." But readers following my posts must know that this is nothing but shenanigans.

-3 ( +4 / -7 )

Another example of democracy in action...

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Okinawa is reaching the stage of the bullet or the ballot.The people won at the ballot,but became ignored,so there need to be a more robust approach to get the change they want.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

 "The request is distorting the spirit of the law," underscoring that the law is designed to protect citizens, not the government. thats just it the courts already ruled that the base relocation was legal and attempts to thwarf the relocation illegal, so unless Okinawa is ruled under a different set of laws the relocation will go ahead.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Hope they posted signs saying they welcome the indefinite stay at Futenma, because they do if they Don't want this relocation site built.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

Good.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

smithinjapan,

Opposition to the Henoko relocation means the unconditional closure of the Futenma air station and return of the land it sits on.  This demand of ours is quite legitimate in light of international law and humanity. 

Futenma sits on stolen property which no one can deny. Toward the end of the Battle of Okinawa and more than two years after it, the U.S. occupation army encroached upon large swaths of private land with impunity to build an air field while herding area residents and villagers all in camps like POWs,   

You can't negotiate terms of the return of the land. It must be returned to Okinawa's control immediately. No room for negotiation. Period. If you say no, then yours is no different from that of a rogue.

-4 ( +3 / -7 )

You can't negotiate terms of the return of the land. It must be returned to Okinawa's control immediately. No room for negotiation.

Nobody is negotiating anything with regards to the return of the land. Once Henoko is built the land will be unconditionally returned.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@browny...I apologize for not being clearer. Far too many people are making the assumption that the "majority" of Okinawan's what this or that.

That obfuscates the issue, as there has never been a candidate to truly get the "majority" of all Okinawan's in any vote. Only a majority of the voters who voted in any given election. They extrapolate the results to be 100% inclusive of everyone on the island, even those who voted against any given candidate.

The next point is that there has never been any poster who is against the bases, give any reasonable answer when asked "How do you differentiate between an Okinawan and Japanese voter?"

They make off the wall comments that "All Okinawan's this" or All Okinawa's that" when ALL of the people voting are JAPANESE.

They comment about it's up to "Okinawan's" to decide. Ok, differentiate between the ethnic Okinawan's and Japanese, and lets discriminate against the people who are NOT ethnic Okinawan, and only allow Okinawan's a voice in the issue. It's downright ludicrous.

I am sure you can see where this is going, Denny represents Okinawa as the Gov. He will, whether I agree with him or not, do the best that he can, I respect him for it. He is a far more respectable person than his predecessor who lied far too many times to keep his agenda going.

But Denny is not going to face an easy battle, as the national government wants Henoko finished.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

And Yubaru - I respect your opinions on Okinawa, as I assume you live there and have a 1st hand view and are privy to much more than many of us. However, living locally doesn't always guarantee that ones opinion is right or the only opinion that has a case. My next door neighbours opinions on local politics is way removed from mine. He sees things only his way.

Thank you, I do live here, and I am not so far jaded to think that my opinion is the only one.

But there is one thing I believe, that far too many of the people against the bases refuse to accept, is that it is NOT an "all or nothing" issue. We have been waiting over 20 years for Futenma to be closed. There are a plethora of reasons why, but lost in all the noise is the one thing that everyone keeps pushing aside, Futenma is still there, it hasn't gone anywhere, and everyone just like to ignore THEM, the people of Ginowan and focus only on Henoko.

The people of Futenma and ME TOO, want it closed. The sooner the better. The people should not be forced to wait any longer, and if Henoko is the place it needs to go, as decided by the government, then let's get it done.

Don't make the people of Futenma the scapegoat any longer, Henoko is a sparsely populated, undeveloped section of Okinawa that is going to get a shot in the arm economically by hosting the extension of the base at Camp Schwab. The economy is going to get a huge influx of money, and the people, like many other towns that host bases, are doing rather well because of it. The benefits of hosting the bases are always kept quiet, and the people keep their hands out wanting more, at the same time saying no. That is a FACT, and it's damn hypocritical in my opinion!

I believe that negotiation vs confrontation is the best response. Confrontation has caused this issue to drag on for nearly a generation. Confrontation leads to further conflict and nothing gets resolved.

It is not a black and white issue.

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Utter nonsense, there's no amount of debating, shouting, or voting, or dodgy delay tactics that will work here. Decisions once reached upon in somber and uncohersed intergovernmental agreements, cannot be reneged on. And remember that the US military is on the ground by right, atleast that's the winner of a war gets, the last time I checked.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The theme that is reoccurring here is that since Gov Tamaki won the election it means that the people of Okinawa have voted against the base transfer.

That's the crux of the current problem. The truth is Gov Tamaki won the election on a platform of preventing the base transfer. 

Ultimately it means nothing to the central government unless Gov Tamaki can find legitimate legal reasons to end the expansion to Camp Schwab or a binding referendum from the people stops it. However, the plan is legally sound and the referendum won't be a binding one. The best, and frankly, a great thing for Okinawa would be to negotiate for more financial and economic advantages in exchange for a smooth transfer of Futenma .

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Why Denny and the Okinawan government do not go to the International Court of Justice in The Hague. If all judicial channels in Japan are closed. There is always that possibility to fight against the relocation of the base. Even fight for a condemnation of the Japanese government for not listening to the opinion of its citizens.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

The Hague has way more important things to do than listen to complaints about the location of a US military base that is covered legally by a security treaty.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Okinawan government do not go to the International Court of Justice

Because Okinawa ken is prefecture in Japan making it a domestic issue meaning the ICJ has no involvement.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Tamaki has lined pockets from Ozawa, Kan and Hatayoma association landowners in the northern part of Okinawa. What about the mountains in northern Nago that will never be returned and what is left is worthless for building. The raped the mountains and say nothing.

It's comments like this, that reinforce falsehoods, people read it believe it, and then base their opinions upon it.

There is a tiny kernel of truth, prefectural promoted (not national) development, has destroyed unbelievable amounts of the natural environment of Okinawa. Untold harm has been done to the environment in the name of economic progress. That happens world wide and is not limited to Japan nor Okinawa.

But it sure the HELL wasn't Tamaki, he just got elected! Not even two months ago, so how in the hell did HE line the pockets of these politicians?

0 ( +2 / -2 )

Yubaru ,

Nobody is negotiating anything with regards to the return of the land. Once Henoko is built the land will be unconditionally returned. (Oct. 18 05:23 pm JST)

The U.S. has had no ears to listen to our case all these years. But I tell you the U.S. has no legitimate right to dictate terms for the return of Futenma, a stolen property. Only a rogue can say he won't return it unless his conditions are met.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

The U.S. has had no ears to listen to our case all these years.

It's not up to the prefecture to decide or even talk about, and that is something you are going to have to eventually understand. Whether you like it or not, that is a fact.

It's also a non-issue, so you will also have to eventually accept that as well!

1 ( +4 / -3 )

But I tell you the U.S. has no legitimate right to dictate terms for the return of Futenma, a stolen property. Only a rogue can say he won't return it unless his conditions are met.

So let's just toss out international agreements and treaties between governments because YOU think something is wrong? You are seriously (again and again) barking up the wrong tree!

0 ( +3 / -3 )

Yubaru,

Any agreement signed between two parties in total disregard of the party most concerned -- the party that may suffer most under that agreement -- is void and in violation of democratic principles. That must have been allowed when the law of the jungle dominated the world matter-of-factly.  We don’t live in the days of colonialism any longer.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Any agreement signed between two parties in total disregard of the party most concerned -- the party that may suffer most under that agreement -- is void and in violation of democratic principles. That must have been allowed when the law of the jungle dominated the world matter-of-factly. We don’t live in the days of colonialism any longer.

This is nonsense, plain and simple. It has nothing to do with Okinawa today, with the exception of you and the other fringe elements that call for a return of the Ryukyu Kingdom, no one pays attention to them.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Any agreement signed between two parties in total disregard of the party most concerned -- the party that may suffer most under that agreement -- is void and in violation of democratic principles. That must have been allowed when the law of the jungle dominated the world matter-of-factly. We don’t live in the days of colonialism any longer.

Okinawa is not a colony or a country it is a part of Japan so they are a part of one of the two parties in this agreemebt.

Stop trying to treat Okinawa as if it is a separate entity, it’s not. It’s a prefecture with of Japan with no extraordinary rights allowing it to dictate international agreements so get used to it

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Prefecture within Japan*

2 ( +2 / -0 )

CyburneticTiger,

Stop trying to treat Okinawa as if it is a separate entity, it’s not. It’s a prefecture with of Japan with no extraordinary rights allowing it to dictate international agreements so get used to it

(It's a) prefecture within Japan.

Certainly, it's a prefecture within Japan and so an integral part of it. But PM Abe betrayed how he thinks about it at heart. When he met with new Okinawa Governor Tamaki, who made a courtesy call at the Prime Minister's Official Residence, Abe said, "their land is still occupied by a heavy U.S. military presence more than 70 years after World War II," as if Okinawa was still occupied by the U.S. military and so not part of Japan." ("**New Okinawa governor wants U.S. to rethink Marine base relocation": **Japan Today: Oct. 13)

The U.S. side makes the best use of such mentality on the part of many mainlander Japanese whereby the two governments agreed that negotiations over the Futenma relocation must go without consulting with Okinawa Prefecture.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

 due in a large part to Okinawa being able to come up 

Should read; due in a large part to Okinawa being unable to come up with.... (my bad)

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Well, it’s an international issue between two nations so the central government doesn’t have to consult the prefecture. But, Okinawa is always treat like a special case with higher privilege than other prefectures so they have consulted but they don’t agree with the prefecture’s position.

If I enter a business deal I will consult my wife on this issue since she is an integeral part of my family. However, just because she doesn’t agree with the options of the business deal doesn’t mean I am going to follow with her recommendation if the deal is a better option.

That being said, PM Abe is betraying nothing. The relocation of Futenma to Camp Schwab is the method of reducing base burden for Okinawa. It leads to the removal of roughly 10,000 personnel and closure of 3 bases (Futenma Kinser and Lester) and portions of Foster. Sounds like a huge win if the OPG stops stonewalling

1 ( +2 / -1 )

CyburneticTiger,

If I enter a business deal I will consult my wife on this issue since she is an integeral part of my family. However, just because she doesn’t agree with the options of the business deal doesn’t mean I am going to follow with her recommendation if the deal is a better option.

Can you sell something very important for your wife without ever consulting her, saying it's a deal between men? Your analogy doesn't work.

As I've been saying, which no one on this thread has been able to prove wrong, Futenma sits on stolen property. In other words, Marine squadrons using Futenma are like squatters illegally occupying others' land.  As such, the U.S. has no right whatsoever to offer and negotiate conditions for its return.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Can you sell something very important for your wife without ever consulting her, saying it's a deal between men? Your analogy doesn't work.

You are again trying to obfuscate the discussion, His analogy works perfectly. You are trying to say something he did not!

Read his comment again!

If I enter a business deal I will consult my wife on this issue since she is an integeral part of my family.

Now YOU wrote, "selling something FOR his wife". He never stated that, he stated it was for his business and consulted her!

He is Japan, his business is the USA, and his wife is Okinawa! He isn't selling something for Okinawa, he is selling to the US and CONSULTED with Okinawa, which the government clearly did, and never got a timely answer, nor an answer that helped them so, they choose not to agree.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

As I've been saying, which no one on this thread has been able to prove wrong, Futenma sits on stolen property.

And just because you say it does not make it a fact. Using this argument then just about the entire United States of America sits on stolen property. Along with a who hell of a lot of other places.

Which means it makes it a moot point  is an expression meaning that something doesn't matter so there is no point for debate

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Can you sell something very important for your wife without ever consulting her, saying it's a deal between men? Your analogy doesn't work.

Well, you missed the part where I said I would consult with her (LIKE JAPAN HAS CONSULTED WITH OKINAWA). But, my role (like the national government) is to provide security and welfare. Sometimes, when it best for the family I’ll have to sell something very important to her even if she says she doesn’t want me to.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

As I've been saying, which no one on this thread has been able to prove wrong, Futenma sits on stolen property. In other words, Marine squadrons using Futenma are like squatters illegally occupying others' land. As such, the U.S. has no right whatsoever to offer and negotiate conditions for its return.

The burden of proof is on you as the accuser. You have offered zero legal proof or judicial precedence that back your claim. If you took your case to court you would lose.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

CyburneticTiger,

But, my role (like the national government) is to provide security and welfare. Sometimes, when it best for the family I’ll have to sell something very important to her even if she says she doesn’t want me to.

Suppose you sell that precious something on a mistaken notion? Are you confident your action is always right?

Futenma sits on stolen property and demanding by the U.S. to build its replacement at Henoko for the return of it is preposterous. outrageous and beyond belief. Naturally, iIt must be returned without any strings attached immediately

Besides, the so-called replacement is not a mere replacement; it's a new base to become a hub of the Marines' base complex in northern Okinawa with many new facilities and functions added to it..

If you say this measure is for providing "security and welfare" with Okinawa, how do you explain why the most active elements of Okinawa-based Marines are to be relocated to Guam and elsewhere, leaving only support units in Okinawa? They come to Okinawa on a regular basis for training for jungle and urban warfare, and what not. Where does the Marines' quick mobilization fit in the theory of Okinawa having a superior strategic location?

Furthermore, the two governments signed a deal that primary responsibility to defend Japan at the time of contingencies rests with the JSDF, not with the USFJ, that is, the U.S. Marines.

Under such circumstances, how can you say constructing a new base for the Marines at Henoko is absolutely necessary? Please explain.

The Henoko relocation means selling Okinawa to the U.S. and sanctioning the U.S. to keep Okinawa as its permanent military colony. Therefore, anyone for the relocation (above all, the Abe government) is a culprit committing to selling Japan’s sovereignty and independence to a foreign power.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

^All anecdotal evidence based in your individual perception of reality. Still waiting for well cited academic evidence....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Futenma sits on stolen property and demanding by the U.S. to build its replacement at Henoko for the return of it is preposterous. outrageous and beyond belief. Naturally, iIt must be returned without any strings attached immediately

Once again a moot point, meaning again, that there is no point in discussing nor debating it.

I and everyone else, who wants Futenma closed will be very happy when the extension at Schwab is finished and the bases down south are returned to Japanese control.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Furthermore, the two governments signed a deal that primary responsibility to defend Japan at the time of contingencies rests with the JSDF, not with the USFJ, that is, the U.S. Marines.

Let me correct you again here, USFJ, United States Forces Japan, refers to the United States Army, United States Navy, United States Air Force and United States Marine Corp. It isn't just the MC

0 ( +1 / -1 )

CyburneticTiger,

Is this all you can say after challenging me by presenting such a poor analogy?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Is this all you can say after challenging me by presenting such a poor analogy?

It was a proper analogy, it's just you who can not accept that fact. In the bigger picture, what you, I or anyone else writes here matters ZERO.

If ANYTHING you wrote had even a 1.0% chance of being viable, I am quite sure that there would be others who would have taken up the banner and used them in their fight with Tokyo.

But, as you can see, no one, has, which means one thing, no one agrees, because no one is doing anything.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

No worries Voice, I’ll wait

i bet the relocation is completed before you have anything factual.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

CyburneticTiger,

Unless Tokyo and Washington give a reasonable explanation to the question I raised above, the confirmation by both U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis and Japanese Defense Minister Takeshi Iwaya, who met at Singapore yesterday, that Henoko relocation is the only solution for the Futenma issue is nothing but a farce and shenanigans. Mr, Iwaya, do you want to be part of the same gang as the Abe cohorts (of course, you do) and fall in a trap set by the U.S.?

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

 I would consult with her (LIKE JAPAN HAS CONSULTED WITH OKINAWA).

And then wilfully ignore her opinion?

But, my role (like the national government) is to provide security and welfare. Sometimes, when it best for the family I’ll have to sell something very important to her even if she says she doesn’t want me to.

It's never 'best for the family' to sell one member down the river.

Maybe other families work differently but if my husband asked my opinion on selling something very important to me, I said No, and he sold it anyway because it was 'best for the family' - I doubt we would continue to have a family.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Unless Tokyo and Washington give a reasonable explanation to the question I raised above,

And just who are you that even matter? lol!

Maybe other families work differently but if my husband asked my opinion on selling something very important to me, I said No, and he sold it anyway because it was 'best for the family' - I doubt we would continue to have a family.

Never said it was important to you, but lets say otherwise.

If it means that in the end you are going to get something a hundred times better, and not have to wait another 50 years for the possibility of some type of reward, I am quite sure you would be jumping for joy too!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

cleo,

Nice rebuttal. It's really mind-boggling that Okinawa housing somany  bases or, more broadly, the Japan-U.S. alliance is based on such shaky grounds.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

If it means that in the end you are going to get something a hundred times better, and not have to wait another 50 years for the possibility of some type of reward, I am quite sure you would be jumping for joy too!

What??

Who's to decide that something else is 'a hundred times better' for me than what I already had and didn't want to lose?

Jumping for joy? More like jumping on his neck.

No way what's going on in that photo - lumps of concrete and black plastic bags dumped in an already stressed and beleaguered marine environment, followed no doubt by engine oil leaks, plane crashes and the noise pollution of jets screaming overhead 24/7 - is by any stretch of the imagination in any way 'better' than leaving the goddam environment alone. Or even - gasp - trying to protect it.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yubaru,

You opine as if you were an expert on Okinawa and keep telling people living outside Okinawa that persons "as ignorant as voice" are few in number. But they don't have to come to Okinawa for a first-hand observation of the fact that the majority of Okinawa people are opposed to the Henoko new base. They can know the relevant fact through various public polls conducted by the news media and, above all, through the result of the recently held gubernatorial election.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Wow, guess you have never been to Okinawa

Wow, guess you're wrong. I've spent plenty of time in Okinawa, love the place, love the people. Hate the noisy jets and the bases taking up huge chunks of land.

As for military pollution -

In the late 1980s, the United States military discovered levels of toxic polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) at land on Kadena Air Base that exceeded safe standards by many orders of magnitude, suggests an in-house report obtained by The Japan Times. Despite the possible risks to service members and local Okinawans, it appears the U.S Air Force failed to alert Japanese authorities and has been concealing information about the contamination — which potentially remains dangerous today — for more than 25 years.

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/community/2014/03/17/issues/u-s-military-report-suggests-cover-up-over-toxic-pollution-in-okinawa/#.W8tT8S17GOE

Since 2002, at least 270 environmental accidents on U.S. Marine Corps bases on Okinawa have contaminated land and local waterways ...... recent USMC guidelines order service members not to inform Japanese authorities of accidents deemed “politically sensitive,” 

Marine Corps Air Station Futenma experienced 156 accidents between 2005 and 2016, resulting in the release of 14,003 liters of fuel (including jet fuel and diesel). Camp Hansen experienced 71 accidents between 2004 and 2016, including the leak of 2,596 liters of fuel and other substances such as 678 liters of antifreeze. Camp Schwab experienced 43 incidents between 2002 and 2016, involving 2,628 liters of fuel .... Of the total 270 accidents, it appears only six were reported to Japanese authorities 

https://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2016/11/19/national/contamination-documents-reveal-three-u-s-bases-okinawa-slow-disclose-environmental-accidents/#.W8tUsy17GOE

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Wow, guess you're wrong. I've spent plenty of time in Okinawa, love the place, love the people. Hate the noisy jets and the bases taking up huge chunks of land.

Fair enough. Remember though, it's a noisy jet that brought you here, and those other noisy one's help keep the peace.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Our good friend VOA, at least for the several years I've read his posts on this thread, fails to grasp one key issue - he has done nothing to convince the populace and elect national level leaders that share his view and would abrogate the US-Japan Security Treaty, leading to not only the cancellation of the move to Henoko, but closing many or all of the US bases on the island. The Communist Party share this view but are a small, fringe party at best.

As has been pointed out time and time again, the national government sets security and national defense policy. The national government must look at threats to Japan not just from a prefectural perspective, but from a much broader outlook. And given the threats Japan faces today, and more importantly in the future, by electing LDP and Komeito politicians, the US-Japan Security Alliance is something Japanese voters see as clearly in the nation's interest.

He must take action to change the government or change the Constitution that places national defense at the national level. Posting long-winded circular arguments on JT does nothing to elicit that change.

My own view is that local government stalling of implementation of the 2006 ATARA Agreement move to Henoko just penalizes the people of Okinawa who would benefit most from the return of Futenma, Kinser, Lester and parts of Foster. Those bases could have been closed and returned years ago, and the land used for commercial or other purposes that create local jobs and contribute to the local economy.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

lincolnman,

I haven't seen your comments regarding the Futenma issue for such a long time. I'm ashamed to admit I'm not familiar with the acronym ATARA. What does the acronym stand for?  I have never seen it in the media or anywhere.  Is it an insider jargon used by members or observers who were involved in the discussion of the U.S. military realignment in Japan that led to the 2006 Roadmap?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Alliance Transformation and Reallignment Agreement....

1 ( +1 / -0 )

The document is readily available on the MOFA website.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

lincolnman,

.... the national government sets security and national defense policy. The national government must look at threats to Japan not just from a prefectural perspective, but from a much broader outlook.

Who will dispute that? But governments are not infallible. They fall in grave errors way too often. And you suggest people should be reticent about what governments do?

When you say "The national government must look at threats to Japan not just from a prefectural perspective, but from a much broader outlook," I assume you are referring to a nudlearized North Korea and a rising China. The catch is how the maintaining of Futenma's function intact or even expanding within Okinawa fits in such a theroy.

The ATARA document also mentions the Marines' mobility. They can quickly respond to contingencies, it says.

OK, then, please answer the following questions:

(1) Why are the most active elements of Okinawa-deployed Marines planned to move to Guam, leaving only support and command units in Okinawa? The infrastructure to house them in Guam is already under construction with Japanese taxpayers' money. How do you explain, even so, the new base at Henoko, the so-called Futenma replacement, must be built?

(2) The ATARA document mentions roles of USFJ and JSDF, and it was clearly agreed upon last year that primary responsibility to defend outlying islands rests with the JSDF. Under such circumstances, why is it absolutely necessary to build the new Marine base at Henoko?

(3) In my opinion, allowing the construction of the new base at Henoko means Japan has agreed to the permanent U.S. military presence in Okinawa, a pseudo-occupation, or more broadly in Japan.  I think such action on the part of the  government is the same as selling the nation's soveraignty to a foreign  country and therefore the new base construction must be prevented by all means.  Don’t you agree?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Addendum:

You say my political stance as regards the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty is on the same line as the Japanese Communist Party. It's true that I'm of the opinion that the current treaty must be done away with for a new one because it is the root of all evil in Okinawa vis-a-vis U.S. bases.  

But this is a consensus, one way or the other, of all Okinawa citizens. You know, there's an increasing number of people in Okinawa who demand the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement (SOFA) be revised right then and there. The SOFA is an integral part of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty. Therefore, my opinion is shared by the majority of the Okinawa people. It’s not a fringe opinion.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

You say my political stance as regards the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty is on the same line as the Japanese Communist Party.

Which explains much. There is only idealism, hence it, the communist party, staying a fringe element in the bigger picture of politics and life, here in Okinawa and Japan. No one really pays attention to the communist party.

Makes things easier now!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Addendum 2:

If Futenma were moved to Henoko, its dirty past would be washed clean (Remember the land it sits on is stolen property?), and the Marines could use the new base unashamedly with no qualms. This is the reason why I’ve been saying Futenma’s relocation to Henoko is no different from money laundering, and so it can be aptly called “base laundering”.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

If Futenma were moved to Henoko, its dirty past would be washed clean (Remember the land it sits on is stolen property?),

Your opinion, not a fact, and would not stand up in a court of law.

I’ve been saying Futenma’s relocation to Henoko is no different from money laundering, and so it can be aptly called “base laundering”.

Again, your opinion, not a fact.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yubaru,

Of course they are my opinions, but I'm not saying things randomly and irresponsibly like some empty chatterbox on this thread. 

Prove that Futenma doesn't sit on stolen property. Prove also that the Henoko relocation isn't "base laundering" just as much as money laundering.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Prove that Futenma doesn't sit on stolen property. Prove also that the Henoko relocation isn't "base laundering" just as much as money laundering.

The burden of proof lies with you the accuser. As you state, your's are opinions, not facts.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"Prove that Futenma doesn't sit on stolen property"

Are you unaware that not only Japan lost the war, but from the end of the war to 1972 all of Okinawa was U.S. territory?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yubaru,

As you state, your's are opinions, not facts

Certainly they are my opinions but they are based on facts, never something I’m uttering randomly and haphazardly. If you want to deny my opinions, you must prove these facts didn't exist. So prove it.

Serrano,

Are you unaware that not only Japan lost the war, but from the end of the war to 1972 all of Okinawa was U.S. territory?

A very interesting opinion. Do you want to say that since Japan lost the war, the U.S. owned Okinawa from 1945 to 1972 whereby it was quite legitimate for the U.S. to freely expropriate private land for whatever purposes it suited them?

Apparently, you haven't read my posts on other threads. So let me refer you to the "Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land", Article 46 of which clearly states: "Family honour and rights, the lives of persons, and private property, as well as religious convictions and practice, must be respected. Private property cannot be confiscated." 

You must know that a victor cannot play it his own way on a conquered land and expropriate private property with impunity.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

If you want to deny my opinions, you must prove these facts didn't exist. So prove it.

That's not how it works. YOU have to prove your opinions are correct, not the other way around. Plenty of people have refuted your opinions with actual facts, but you continue to provide nothing but baseless conjecture.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Certainly they are my opinions but they are based on facts, never something I’m uttering randomly and haphazardly. If you want to deny my opinions, you must prove these facts didn't exist. So prove it.

They are based upon conjecture, bias, mixed with a thimble of truth to make everything appear to the casual reader here that you know what you are talking about.

You truly think that the base, and by extension ALL bases in Okinawa, not just Futenma, sit on stolen property in violation of the Hague convention, yet you have not once responded to numerous requests from myself and others, to, like yourself here, in detail, explain why no one has ever made this claim, or raised this issue.

You carry the burden of proof as the accuser, so far nothing you have stated on this thread, or countless others proves otherwise.

Start by answering why no one besides you, brings up the issue of the Hague Convention. Start by explaining, in detail, how is it that the Gov.(s) past and present, of Okinawa, have conveniently overlooked this issue, and even so far as going to the Hague itself (Onaga) but bringing up the Futenma issue and relocation to Camp Schwab as a HUMAN RIGHTS violation and NOT one of the Convention you commonly pull out to support your opinions?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

extanker,

An executer charges a suspect based on law and a judge rules the case based on relevant provisions of the law also. They don't deliberate the case randomly as their fancy and imagination guide them. Now you say my presenting a legal basis in this case is "nothing but baseless conjecture". Really? LOL.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Considering the case has already been brought to court and deemed illegal, yes, I'd say confidently that your theories are baseless conjecture. LOL.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The case being the blocking of the base move by the local government, in case you are thinking otherwise.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yubaru,

The fact that no one else has provided legal evidence except me doesn't prove you are right.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The fact that no one else has provided legal evidence except me doesn't prove you are right.

That is your opinion, and is not proof that you are correct. Respond in detail to this, with irrefutable proof as well.

Start by answering why no one besides you, brings up the issue of the Hague Convention. Start by explaining, in detail, how is it that the Gov.(s) past and present, of Okinawa, have conveniently overlooked this issue, and even so far as going to the Hague itself (Onaga) but bringing up the Futenma issue and relocation to Camp Schwab as a HUMAN RIGHTS violation and NOT one of the Convention you commonly pull out to support your opinions?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

extanker,

Please don't go off track. We are talking here about whether or not the land Futenma sits on was legally acquired by the U.S. occupation forces.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

An executer charges a suspect based on law and a judge rules the case based on relevant provisions of the law also. They don't deliberate the case randomly as their fancy and imagination guide them. Now you say my presenting a legal basis in this case is "nothing but baseless conjecture". Really? LOL.

In a court of law, the prosecution MUST present his or her case based upon the law, and not conjecture, opinions, or theory.

Charges are one thing, getting a decision in their favor is something totally different.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The fact that no one else has provided legal evidence except me doesn't prove you are right.

Do you actually believe that you know better than all the legal scholars here who have painstakingly gone over all documentation and evidence to present a case to the Japanese courts and have over-looked this?

The only thing they could come up with was a possible procedural point and nothing really of other substance, yet you believe that you are the only one that has provided "legal evidence" to the contrary? Not to mention they lost too!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yubaru,

In a court of law, the prosecution MUST present his or her case based upon the law, and not conjecture, opinions, or theory.

What do you want to say here by simply repeating what I already said. No matter, I presented "Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land" as a legal basis on which one can definitely say the Futenma air station sits on private land illegally confiscated and therefore that the U.S. has no inherent right to demand Futenma’s replacement be built at Henoko in exchange for its return.

What's your legal evidence to counter and deny my contention?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land" as a legal basis on which one can definitely say the Futenma air station sits on private land illegally confiscated and therefore that the U.S. has no inherent right to demand Futenma’s replacement be built at Henoko in exchange for its return.

Simply put, it's a moot point. No need for anything else.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

For what it's worth here; the issue of whether or not the bases on Okinawa, currently being used by the US military, being "legal" or not is purely academic. It can be argued that the US took the property as spoils of war, it could be argued that they took the land, while it was under the administration of the US, hence it, the US having the legal right as well, and probably a bunch of other reasons as well.

I think I can safely say that no one at the time, from the US side at least, thought anything about it, as, like it or not, "to the victor goes the spoils". Was it morally correct? Maybe not, but the people who appropriated the land were not thinking about the distant future, where we are today. They were thinking about the needs of the US at THAT TIME, and the needs at THAT TIME dictated their actions.

There are some that are using hindsight to attempt in an attempt to make the argument that there are legal claims to be made by the Japanese against the US. But even that was settled following the war, so legally the Japanese who lost land here, have no claims.

People are trying to separate the Okinawan's from the Japanese, ethnically, culturally, yeah there are plenty of differences. Yet Okinawa is a part of Japan, and Okinawa is also fully integrated into Japan, which makes the discussion regarding votes about becoming independent, 100% nonsense.

Okinawan's take much pride in their history, and rightfully so, but they are Japanese citizens. Sometimes I get the feeling that posters here too can not or choose not to accept or differentiate that fact.

There is no legal issue TODAY about how the land was acquired, none. No one makes the argument otherwise.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

And to satisfy any questions about the legalities of the issue, (academically speaking)

The Treaty Of San Francisco gave the US the rights to Okinawa under it's trusteeship system, specifically article 3.

https://www.documentcloud.org/documents/1338718-san-francisco-peace-treaty-1951.html

The trusteeship system was administered through the UN and actual governance was under the control of the US. In the UN trusteeship system, strategic areas, as deemed by the governing authority were under the control of the governing authority (US) the bases were covered under this provision.

http://www.un.org/en/sections/un-charter/chapter-xii/index.html

There is no argument. It is a moot point,

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yubaru,

In a nutshell, you want to say, as Serrano and others, that Japan lost the war and the U.S. could do whatever it wanted to do in Okinawa. Some people even go further and say Okinawa's plight is the end result of the Pearl Harbor attack of 1941, so that all responsibility for Okinawa's current state of affairs rests with Japan.

There's truth in such thinking, but the catch is that that war ended in 1945 and the resulting occupation was supposed to have ended in 1951 in mainland Japan and 1972 in Okinawa when it was reverted to Japan. In spite of Japan's independence and Okinawa's reversion, however, the virtual occupation of Japan, especially of Okinawa, continued under treaties Japan was obliged to sign.

So, on the surface, everything seems to be going in accordance treaties and so lawfully. But the fact the U.S. occupation forces and their bases have remained almost intact, especially in Okinawa, attest to my claim that virtual occupation is still going on. In other words, treaties that guarantee this state of affairs are shams and fake, and must be scrapped and replaced by genuine ones. The reduction of this enormous U.S. military footprint in Okinawa may be the first step toward that end.

Remember, also, that Japan's surrender in 1945 and resultant treaties don't exonerate the U.S. from offenses it committed during Okinawa’s occupation to expropriate private land with impunity.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Addendum:

It’s mind-boggling to always find that you, a naturalized Japanese citizen living in Okinawa, are so hectic about trying to maintain the current state of affairs, that is, this preposterous U.S. military footprint that can be called none other than military occupation. Are you offering your opinions, thinking you are still a U.S. citizen?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Remember, also, that Japan's surrender in 1945 and resultant treaties don't exonerate the U.S. from offenses it committed during Okinawa’s occupation to expropriate private land with impunity.

Who is looking for exoneration here? Has Japan ever been exonerated for it's actions during the war?

It’s mind-boggling to always find that you, a naturalized Japanese citizen living in Okinawa, are so hectic about trying to maintain the current state of affairs, that is, this preposterous U.S. military footprint that can be called none other than military occupation. Are you offering your opinions, thinking you are still a U.S. citizen?

Hectic? Funny that you of all people use this word.

Also do stop trying to put words into my mouth. It's an unbecoming habit that you have. My positions regarding the bases are well known here.

Be careful about throwing stones in glass houses.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yubaru,

Also do stop trying to put words into my mouth. It's an unbecoming habit that you have. My positions regarding the bases are well known here.

If you aren't hectic, you are at least trying hard to hold down Okinawa's public opinion that the new base construction at Henoko must be prevented.  I'm not putting words into your mouth. That's your firm stance on this problem, isn't it? 

Again, let me ask. Are you offering your opinions, thinking you are still a U.S. citizen?

0 ( +0 / -0 )

This thread is closed for discussion. Furthermore, voiceofokinawa and yubaru, please stop bickering every time we have a story on Okinawa.

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites