politics

Gov't says it will go ahead with U.S. base plan despite Nago election result

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Word to change his mind "patiently"? You mean bribery, and failing that, threats. Once again the Japanese government shows what it truly is - a puppet of the US

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

So here we have Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga, stating that "“Japan is a country ruled by law and we will carry out (the project) calmly based on legal procedures”. who's law. It seems the electorate are wasting their time voting for a representative who is acting on the wishes of the voters, because central government is dictating Okinawa policy from Tokyo, totally ignoring the wishes of the residents, as shown by the flip flop of the Okinawa governor. Now here is Japan, who calls itself a democracy, degrades China for its one party policies along with other so called democratic countries, and here it is doing the same to the population of Okinawa. Free Okinawa from the clutches of Japan, and let them return to a proud self governing nation in there own right,"The Kingdom of Ryukyu" Then let Japan if it wants the US military on it shores, bring all the bases to the mainland. Oh !! I forgot the mainlands population don't want the bases, funny how two sets of rules, both voting no bases, but Tokyo only listening to mainland voters. Question, are the rights of the people of Okinawa equal to the rights of the population of mainland Japan ??

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

are the rights of the people of Okinawa equal to the rights of the population of mainland Japan ??

I couldnt agree with you more on this. If anything, Okinawa should become a self-governing state. Its been messed around alternately by the US and Japan for too long

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Defending Senkaku islands from China invasion needs V-22, which needs to station in Okinawa prefecture for prompt response. Government and US make sure that the new base will be as far away from residence areas as possible. Every citizen or foreigner who loves Japan more than China should support the plan.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Bingo! A small-town mayor simply vying for popularity points cannot override the government. Susumu would change his tune in an instant if a Chinese sub went by (then when it passed go back to anti-US ranting).

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

The relocation of Futenma is in the interest of both countries, therefore it will go ahead.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The agreement reached in December was hailed as a breakthrough that could remove a running sore in relations between the two allies.

Who hailed the agreement as a breakthrough? Definitely not the vast majority of Okinawans. Only someone with no insight into the situation could describe Nakaimas stunt as a "breakthrough".

Okinawa's Governor Hirokazu Nakaima, long a thorn in the central government's side, gave the plan his approval after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe promised Okinawa financial aid of at least 300 billion yen every year until fiscal 2021.

The article makes it look like the financial aid is a completely new turn, which it is not. Basically the aid, I rather refer to it by the hilarious term "comfort money", was already in the fiscal planning, just that it was raised slightly by some billion yen, but not without relabeling funds from the central government that where due in Okinawa anyway like the Naha Airport 2nd runway and the OIST University support. So Nakaima didn't even extort a big new budget, he just did a theatrical performance with Abe (dramatic adviser: Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga) to justify his "u-turn" (that in my eyes wasn't surprising at all).

Also Nakaima apparently never was a thorn in the central governments side, rather were the Okinawan voters a thorn in Nakaimas side. Nakaima never was "anti-base", he rather was and still is "power-hungry".

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Enough with the China threat already. Even if Futenma was relocated off island, Kadena and the Air Force would still be here as well as the remaining Marines, the Navy and the Army, not to mention support from the DOD in mainland Japan. Do you really think the US would sit on a real threat because they didn't get their way with Futenma? Jeez, give it a rest.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Okinawa will NEVER be free of being taken by America and still allowed to keep it as a prized possession to do with it as they please.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The population of the area does not want this new airfield. The US government says (by action) they do not respect the voice of the Okinawa people. The Americans want this new training airfield at all costs. Well the cost is paid for by the people of Japan. Honest Abe would never go ahead without the approval of the Americans. So again America why do you disrespect democracy? Close MCAS Futenma now with the rest of the Marine bases. Respect the democratic voice of Okinawa. Respect Democracy in Okinawa!

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Some hikyou Japanese want America to protect them from China invasion, also want to curse America. After free lunch, say thank you, that's etiquette.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Honest Abe would never go ahead without the approval of the Americans.

Honest Abe? ? ?

Yuri, you might be missing some important information...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

bam_boo I am being sarcastic of course. The PM's name is not pronounced the same as the US President. I think that Abe and now Nakaima are being blackmailed into supporting this training base. It is too far from the disputed islands and will host too few helicopters. If built the Americans will find some excuse to keep MCAS Futenma open. What good will 12 Ospreys do in battle? They are meat on the table (have watched too many John Wayne movies!) even to Mig 15's! if you look at all of the US bases only one Kadena AFB actually helps defend Okinawa. Even that base is more about surveillance against the Peoples Republic of China. Japan can set up the Pac III's to defend them from a bankrupt starving nation

So let's look at this closer. The pro-base candidate for Nago mayor lost big time. The Pro-base candidate in Ginowan last badly as well. The people have spoken and if America respects Democracy they will close Futenma and respect the Okinawa people.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

****The vote reflects the majority opinion of those who voted. Based on this vote, moving forward appears to be contrary to the opinion of those majority who voted, and may reflect the sentiment of the majority as a whole. Having stated this, the key question is: How does this vote affect the long range atmosphere between the United States and Japan, not only in terms of the relocation of the Marines, but also in terms of the overall presence of American Forces in Japan? Earlier, proposals were made to relocate American Forces from Okinawa to Guam and Hawaii, along with possibly New Zealand. While relocating American Forces to New Zealand may not be easily accomplished given that New Zealand, like Japan is a sovereign nation, and previously, New Zealand has expressed concern over nuclear warships visiting New Zealand, the transfer of American Forces to both Guam and Hawaii should be able to be accomplished much easier, given that both Guam and Hawaii are "part" of the United States. Perhaps, both America and Japan need to re-examine our bilateral military relationship as a whole. Clearly, given the tensions in the region, especially the current tensions between the PRC and Japan, and North Korea and Japan, some presence of American Forces appears to still be necessary, especially given Japan's Constitution. Should Japan's Constitution be revised, i.e. the portion describing the presence of American Forces in Japan and the restrictions placed on Japan's Self-Defense Forces, then, perhaps, the bilateral military relationship between Japan and the United States will be changed. In the interim, the relationship most likely will remain relatively unchanged. This will cause much stress for those in Japan who would appreciate a reduction in the presence of American Forces throughout Japan, not only in Okinawa. Thank you very much.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Okinawan's are not Japanese. Their kingdom was annexed by Japan about the same time Japan annexed Korea and Taiwan. And since then the Okinawans suffered from the war and occupation by Japan and then the US, until this very day. 100,000 Okinawans died when Japan fought the US over it in the 1940s.

Nothing but bad came to Okinawa ever since Japan occupied it. When can they be freed of all these foreign colonialist repressions?

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Taiwan under Japan was heaven, till WWII (1937~45). When China came, they kill and they are dirty and they corrupt. Okinawans fancy good life under China? then drive US out. If not, help defend Senkaku. It's the platform for China invasion of Okinawa.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Thank you goyabento, finally someone who understands the situation. It seems that a lot of the posters have never been to Okinawa and have definitely never been inside the bases. If you have been inside the U.S. bases you would know that if MCAS Futenma was closed tomorrow without any replacement the U.S. Military still has enough firepower on Okinawa to take care of any threat. If you add in the JSDF Air Base in Naha and their various missile sites located on Okinawa there is no reason to worry about Okinawa at all.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

id say that J Gov slush fund will be kept in overdrive trying to convince Nago mayor that its relocation plan will go ahead.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yep, "bribery" or under the table handouts will be the other of the day. The Japanese government is already paying about 2 billion dollars a year for the "privilege" of hosting US bases, now it seems they have to resort to bribing Okinawan politicians to relocate said bases as well

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Using money to buy support for the bases is a specialty of the Japanese Government. Before reversion, some of the most vocal anti-base people were the Okinawan on-base workers themselves. Then when the J. Govt. made them National Civil Servants and started paying them more than their jobs are worth their opposition all but disappeared. Same with the base landowners, they are paid a lot more than what their land is worth to buy their support. The only way the Japanese Government can get any type of support from the Okinawan people for the bases is to bribe them.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

"The population of the area does not want this new airfield."

The population of the area around Narita Airport didn't want that airfield either, but since it was good for the rest of the country, not to mention other countries, they got it.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

The planned location is habitat for various marine animals including dugong. If Ms. Kennedy is against dolphine hunt, she could also be against the construction of the US base on Henoko.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"The planned location is habitat for various marine animals"

Good grief, the marine animals have the whole ocean to go swimming in.

-4 ( +0 / -4 )

Good grief, the marine animals have the whole ocean to go swimming in.

@ Serrano, now we know how much you know about marine biology...

@ YuriOtani, I suppose the reason for the US military being so keen on Henoko is the a deep-water Oura Bay port capable of hosting deep-sea vessels and nuclear submarines. It seems incredible convenient to have such a secluded harbor with plenty of storage space and an adjacent airfield. I do believe that is the most wanted on the Pentagon list of wishes and what is lacking now in Okinawa.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

bam_boo you are saying the Americans want to take over Teima and Seneka for their new port and displace it population? I am sure this will NEVER happen! The government of Japan will not be able to displace the population. So will the Marines be sent in again with their guns to do it? It will look really nice on world TV. The Americans will destroy the most beautiful coral reef for their new bases. NO BASE! NO RAPE!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Me: "Good grief, the marine animals have the whole ocean to go swimming in."

bam_boo: "@ Serrano, now we know how much you know about marine biology... "

OK, the marine animals don't have THE WHOLE OCEAN to swim around in, but they have a heck of a lot more water to swim around in other than around the coast of Nago. No?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Serrano "they (marine animals) have a heck of a lot more water to swim aroung in other than around the coast of Nago. No?"

The answer is "No" as you suspect. If you'd like to know why, please study some animal ecology...but I'm afraid if we stick to this issue, the site management would come to say "off topic!"

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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