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Gov't starts surveying seabed for Nago landfill work

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How can they do this?

"Reducing the burden on Okinawa," means building yet ANOTHER huge base in Henoko.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7xhKBFftAgU

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It is hard to believe but readers and writers on this site suggested this solution several years ago. It worked in Kansai, and it left a beautiful park behind at the quarry for visitors to enjoy. Why is there objection to this plan? Is it a matter of land developers wanting a "piece of the pie" or a political pay-off? The objection needs to be investigated. Okinawa can benefit from this solution by turning the former property into a Las Vegas casino environment. Imagine all the people coming from Japan and the nearby Asian countries to spend money during Golden Week and Obon. Full employment, for the residents, and best of all, the drunk GI's can stay on the island base. Win-win for Japan.

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The J-Govt. are in a big hurry to get this started because they are afraid that a real anti-base Governor will be elected later this year.

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The U.S. State Department naturally welcomed the start of construction work. This means Washington has been pressing Tokyo to go ahead with the agreed-upon relocation plan quickly, fully knowing that Tokyo might take most undemocratic and inhumane action.

Does the relocation reduce the U.S. military foot print on Okinawa, as State Department spokeswoman Marie Harf says? In one area, maybe, yes, but in another area, no, NEVER. The overall burdens, that is, the U.S. military footprint, remain the same or will rather increase and perpetuate. The spokeswoman doesn't know the reality of Okinawa being a congested U.S. military colony. She is merely parroting what her superiors at the Japan desk told her to say.

Outrageous, indeed!

The majority of Okinawans, more than 70 percent, are opposed to the Henoko relocation plan and fully support protesters and demonstrators now at Henoko. Activists on sea kayak trying to prevent landfill work, always daunted by a flotilla of coast guard ships, may be small in number but they have our full moral support and sympathy.

The U.S. intention to colonize Okinawa militarily is devilish and demonic, nothing different from erstwhile colonialism. Think about it, Ms. Harf.

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voiceofokinawa,

My wife just got back from Henoko.

Things are very definitely hotting up.

I very much doubt that they will be able to build the base in Henoko.

This is turning into a country-wide fight. Not just Okinawa.

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Are there US bases in Okinawa because China might attack Japan? What for? Kyushu has more industries and economically better situated. Maybe US bases should be relocate in Kyushu? It is far from Tokyo and close to Korea and China, too. Not to Haneko but to Fukuoka, Moji or Kokura. US still can collect huge Omoiyair-Fund, How much was last year? More than 2 billion dollars? Which one is main reason US bases stay in Jaoan? Money or protecting Japan from China?

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Incoming inflated protest participant numbers from the anti-base crowd. I guess the offer of a free trip to Okinawa isn't enticing enough to get enough naicha to attend your protests.

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toshiko: How much was last year? More than 2 billion dollars? Which one is main reason US bases stay in Jaoan? Money or protecting Japan from China?

Japan is not paying ALL of US defense spending in Japan. Only a percentage. So US is losing money. Why stay in Japan to lose money? And be cursed for it?

Somewhere else someone complained about the Y380M Japan paid as compensation for incidents/accidents involving US military personnel over 10 years.

According to Japan Times that is only 25% of the total bill! (link below) But the US military is in Japan to defend Japan, from itself and neighbors! Why should US pay anything?

You could say the deterrence of having US in Japan prevents China et al from getting jiggy and starting war that US would later have to come and help with. But I could say US's best choice is to stay out of any conflict until other participants have burned through their resources, then come in and clean up. Bad for Japan, but good for US. Doing it this way, deterrence benefiting Japan but US pays for it, bad for US, good for Japan, Japan still complains.

88 USA bases in Japan, including 33 in Okinawa! Think of all the unemployed professors we could employ in the USA with that money! They are crying from hunger!

http://www.japantimes.co.jp/news/2014/08/13/national/japan-paid-%C2%A5380-million-past-decade-compensation-accidents-caused-u-s-military-personnel/#.U_OetET_NFY

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@!turbostat: I wrote about Omoiyari Fund that US wanted to keep same level eaxh year,. Don't you think USA should pull out if it is losing money by staying in Japan? Have you checued Business Board in which USA owes China 1.27 trillion dollars and to Japan 1/22 trillion dollars? Do you think USA should spend money in Japan? If USA gets out from Japan, I am sure USA have some money to spend in Irqque etc and GOP would be quiet for a while. Japan will save money and USA will be able to reduce its expenses in Japan. Staying forever will not reduce USA wastes in Okinawa. Don't you know Japan and China are cooperating on Industrial growth of Japan by Mitsubishi, etcs for several years now.

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The $1.2T the USA owes Japan is debt that Japan bought and the US is supposed to pay back. Not gift such as the billions of military spending US dropped over the years and will never recover, for guarding Japan and Japan's neighbor, Korea.

And yes, I think US should pull out of Japan, as I said.

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If Okinawa loses bases, Japan Incs more likely create their factories in Okinawa instead of everything in S E Asian countries where they have to deal with none Japanese speaking employees. North and South America was OK as Japanese corporation big shots sent had English classes since Jr HS and many of them graduated in US Universities. But Okinawan people, they don't have to worry. Any Japanese can work together w/o using language dictionaries. How about tourism mecca? Better than snowy Hokkaido even It is way better than Russian plan to create tourism mecca in Siberian Tundra with casinos,

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turbostat (Aug. 20, 2014 - 04:11AM JST):

If Japan had asked the reluctant U.S. to come to Japan and defend it, then I would buy what you were saying. Japan should provide 88 bases with the U.S. military for free; shoulder all operation and maintenance costs of these bases, not just 74 percent of it; award compensation to Japanese victims involved in accidents caused and crimes committed by U.S. service members; pay salaries to all U.S. military personnel and civilian employees of U.S. and third-country nationality; and more.

But were U.S. military forces invited to station here for starters? Are U.S. service members invited guests? Are they "good neighbors" as they like to ballyhoo themselves?

Remember they were/are carry-overs from the post-war Occupation, a virtual occupation thus continuing. All other Allied powers withdrew their troops when Japan restored sovereignty in 1951. Why are U.S. forces still stationed here 69 years after the end of the war?

And when we ask them to close one out of 33 bases (Futenma Air Station) located in a crowded city section, the U.S. demands its replacement be built in Nago in northern Okinawa. This is probably the most preposterous and outlandish bilateral relation the world has ever seen.

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No to all that, because Japan could easily ask or order USA to leave but Japan hasn't. Phillipines order USA to leave and USA left. So go ahead.

And by "And when we ask them to close one out of 33 bases", I'm thinking you mean some percentage of Okinawans, who themselves are about 1% of total Japanese populace, the rest of whom probably couldn't care less.

If Japan didn't want the new base to be in Nago, it wouldn't be there. No use saying USA demanded it when USA has no right to demand anything. If Japan says no what's USA going to do?

You say "preposterous and outlandish bilateral relation" but that's because you are comparing apple's relation with orange. Okinawa (or that percent of Okinawans who don't like it) with USA.

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Ryukyu Asahi news report on the "No new base at Henoko - Island Costume Conference" held in Naha on July 27, was attended by 2,000 Okinawans. Supporters & attendees included representatives of all 41 Okinawan municipalities, business leaders, academics, students, & retired elders. The theme of the conference: united Okinawan opposition to the attempt to transform Okinawa into a prefecture dominated by V-22 Osprey training & a mega-base at Henoko.

Attendees criticized the current Okinawa governor's fixation on economic subsidies, stating that peace, human rights, & human dignity are more important. They criticized the use of militarized force to impose a new base at Henoko: "This is trampling on the dignity and will of the Okinawan people, a denial of the basic aspects of democracy and social justice. We reject a future of Okinawa dominated by a new mega-base. We want to provide hope to our children & have the right & responsibility to decide the future of Okinawa. We want to build a friendly society, for everyone.

[Today 100 people from civic groups, business circles, & volunteer groups, with the leaders of the "Island Conference" held recently in Naha arrive at the Henoko sit-in in front of the base. All together, around 300 people raised their voices together, chanting "Don't allow reckless construction," & "Residents are Angry." Hiroji Yamashiro, chair of Okinawa Heiwa Undo (Center Okinawa Peace Movement Center) and Ms. Suzuyo Takazato, joint representative of the conference, commented on the the level of anger throughout Okinawa; the Japanese government's show & use of excessive force. They vow to keep fighting, & mobilizing the 70+% of Okinawans who are opposed to construction of an airbase & military port at the Sea of Henoko.]

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The original Japan-Us Security Treaty was signed on 8 Sept. 1951. One of its provisions stipulated that Japan must guarantee the US the same stable use of military bases as it did under the occupation. Without accepting that requirement, Japan could never have won its independence. This stipulation was carried over to the revised Mutual Security Treaty of 1960 (Article 6) and with it the US has been assured of its continued formidable military presence in Japan. As a condition for allowing Okinawa to revert back to Japan the US was allowed to keep its massive bases more or less intact. There was even a secret agreement which allowed the US to store nuclear weapons on Okinawa in emergency situations. So its not fair to say that the US did not demand that they have bases in Japan. Apparently, from early on, the U.S. had Henoko in mind as a site for the relocation. The Marine Corps Okinawa submitted a blueprint every fiscal year to the Pentagon and eventually to the U.S. Congress for approval in the 1960's, with an air station and port facilities to be constructed on reclaimed land off the coast at Henoko. However, the '60's plan didn't materialize, probably because the U.S. Congress didn't pass the bill for the necessary appropriations due to skyrocketing expenditure on the Vietnam War. The situation is totally different today because Tokyo will shoulder all the expenses for land reclamation and the construction of runways and other facilities, not to mention the high-end equipment.

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It's up to Japan to arrange bases on Okinawa as they see fit. If US tries to influence Japanese elections isn't Japan capable of squashing the attempt and kicking US out?

japan4life: So its not fair to say that the US did not demand that they have bases in Japan.

If US gave Okinawa back to Japan in exchange for keeping bases on Okinawa, it's still better for Japan than US keeping Okinawa, which they certainly could have done. Now many years later it seems Japan could tell US "out of Japan" just as Phillipines did, but chooses not to.

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turbotsat (Aug. 20, 2014 - 02:21PM JST):

You post your opinion as if you were a critique of great authority, saying that "If Japan didn't want the new base to be in Nago, it wouldn't be there. No use saying USA demanded it when USA has no right to demand anything. If Japan says no what's USA going to do?"

Are you sure of what you are saying?

When Yukio Hatoyama took office as the 93rd Prime Minister with the promise to Okinawans that he will relocate Futenma Air Station abroad or at least outside Okinawa, how did Washington react to this and what happened? Did Washington close the air base as was suggested? NEVER.

Tohru Magosaki, a former Japanese diplomat, details in his book ("The politicians who were wiped out by the U.S." (Shogakukan Publishers, 2012) how many U.S.-defiant Japanese politicians have been wiped out by the suzerain U.S. in the past.

As for this, Kakuei Tanaka comes into our mind at once. Of course, Tanaka's crime was concerned with the Lockheed scandal. But where was this scandal pried open first and for what purpose? Hatoyama and Ichiro Ozawa, for that matter, may fall under the category of these fallen Japanese politicians.

So your opinion lacks any substantial meaning.

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turbotsat what you are saying is the majority can bully the minority. The vast majority of Japanese do not care about Okinawa or have a stake in it. They do not want it where they live so they dump it on the minority. The Japanese majority might as well decide to evacuate Okinawa and give it to the Americans. Lastly since this new base can be used to dock an Nuclear powered Aircraft Carrier, one will be based at Okinawa. In the event of war Okinawa will be destroyed from one end to another, the new base will be target #1. It is just a matter of time before the Americans expand their new port. Henoko can be in real danger of being absorbed into this new base. What if the real relocation is the naval base at Yokusuka to Okinawa? turbotsat you do not understand that tyranny in the name of freedom is wrong.

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Lockheed probably would not have traded [getting a punch into the Japanese PM] for [Lockheed's status as the posterboy for the bad old days of American corporate bribery of foreign governments], that Okinawa's status as fortress island is necessary to Japan and the bases have to be somewhere and will probably not be attacked except in a minor way unless we all become subject to attack, that moving a base from very populated to sparsely populated area is something a lot of people probably asked for, no further comment. Good luck with your efforts and bye bye ...

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Tokyo must foot all the bills for the new base at Henoko that are estimated to be over $12 billion. Tokyo will also have to shoulder about $6.1 billion of the $10.2 billion necessary for infrastructure development for 8,000 marines moving from Okinawa to Guam.

Under the 2010 bilateral agreement, Tokyo must pay a total $11.35 billion to the U.S. coffer for a host-nation support (sympathy budget) during the 5-year period from 2011 to 2016.

The U.S. government has successfully cajoled the Japanese government into buying 17 MV-22 Ospreys to the tune of $1.7 billion (about $98 million per one aircraft).

The total sum amounts to an astounding $31.15 billion. Shouldn't this money be used for the reconstruction of the 2011 Tohoku disaster and the most recent Hiroshima landslide disaster areas?

The Henoko new base construction for the U.S. Marines is nothing but a waste of money -- and meaningless, too, as far as Japanese taxpayers are concerned.

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