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Gov't to revise U.S. base work in Okinawa; delay expected

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OK Then:

you'll get to KEEP Futenma; right where it IS, for another 80 years...which just happens to be in the Flight Path of my Okinawan family...would prefer to take it OUT of Ginown, to somewhere LESS congested.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

WA4TKG,

But if this construction is let go, the U.S. Marines will stay in Okinawa not just for 80 years but forever.

Tell me why this new base is absolutely necessary from the U.S.'s Pacific strategy when the most active elements of Okinawa-deployed Marines are to move to Guam, leaving command and support elements only in Okinawa, and when Japan and the U.S. have struck a deal to the effect that primary responsibility to defend Japanese territory rests with JSDF and not with USFJ.

Tell me, also, on what legal basis the U.S. can use Futenma, apparently a stolen property in light of international law, and demand its replacement built at the planned site if we want Futenma to be returned.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

Tell me, also, on what legal basis the U.S. can use Futenma, apparently a stolen property in light of international law, and demand its replacement built at the planned site if we want Futenma to be returned.

Actually, the legal basis has nothing to do with international law.

If Japan was demanding the land back and the U.S. refused, then one could argue that there is a dispute between sovereign nations that could theoretically be governed by international law.

However, the use of the land in Okinawa and elsewhere in Japan has been agreed to between both countries and is governed under agreements between the two countries. Therefore, it is not a matter that involves international law.

That does not make it right or fair, especially to the Japanese landholders whose land was confiscated for military facilities, but that is between the Japanese government and its citizens.

Here is thing. If Japan wanted to kick the U.S. out of Okinawa / Japan, it could do so. The Philippines did so in the 1990s.

The truth is that the Japanese central government does not want the U.S. to leave Japan. At least, they sure don't act like it.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

@zones2surf

While everything you said is true, you're trying to present logic to the wrong person.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

zones2surf,

Actually, the legal basis has nothing to do with international law.

Maybe, you would cite the 1971 Okinawa Reversion Agreement and the Japan U.S. Security Treaty as a legal basis. But they are mere agreements reached between the two governments in disregard to international law, and so the legal basis has nothing to do with it here, as you say.

Remember, however, the bilateral agreement is void under international law however vocally you may insist it must be kept strictly because the Japanese government agreed to it. You know, the U.S. occupation army confiscated private lands with impunity while all Okinawa residents who survived the Battle of Okinawa  were herded in detention camps at various locations like POWs. The land expropriation at the time was a blatant violation of Article 46 of the Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, that clearly states "private property cannot be confiscated."

Can the bilateral agreement exonerate the irregularities committed by the U.S. occupation army?

In my opinion, the irregularities of land requisition committed by the U.S. occupation forces can never be exonerated by the 1971 Okinawa reversion agreement even if it stipulates Japan waves all claims against the U.S. for any damages done by U.S. military itself and its personnel during the occupation of Okinawa.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

extanker,

While everything you (zones2surf) said is true, you're trying to present logic to the wrong person.

If you think everything zones2surf says is true, it's your obligation to prove why he is right and disprove what I argue immediately above.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

@voiceofokinawa,

In my opinion, the irregularities of land requisition committed by the U.S. occupation forces can never be exonerated by the 1971 Okinawa reversion agreement even if it stipulates Japan waves all claims against the U.S. for any damages done by U.S. military itself and its personnel during the occupation of Okinawa.

You seem to think that I support the continued presence of the U.S. military in Okinawa. However, that is not what my point is about.

Japan IS a sovereign country.

It regained its sovereignty in 1952 for everything except for Okinawa.

It regained sovereignty over Okinawa in 1972.

It has full sovereignty over its territory and has never argued that the U.S. is exerting unfair control over territory that it has sovereign claims to.

So, you may be angry about the situation, about what happened after WW2, and about the current situation. BUT, this is still not a matter for international law, no matter what your opinion may be.

If Japan truly felt unfairly treated, they would expel the U.S. from Japan and then file claims against Japan in any / all venues available to it!!

The truth is that your anger is misplaced. You should be angry at the Japanese central government for agreeing to the current situation.

You should be angry at the Japanese central government for not voiding all postwar agreements and demanding that the U.S. vacate all territory in Japan they currently occupy.

Channel your anger at the party that can ACTUALLY change things!!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

zones2auef,

Japan IS a sovereign country.

It regained its sovereignty in 1952 for everything except for Okinawa.

It regained sovereignty over Okinawa in 1972.

At the first glance, the three points you point out are all true. The catch is whether Japan is really a genuine sovereignty as you think it is, not subservient to the U.S.

Under what circumstances do you think Japan signed the 1951 Japan-U.S. Security Treaty?  Under what circumstances did Japan sign the 1971 Okinawa Reversion Agreement? 

Japan recovered independence in 1952 all right when the San Francisco Peace Treaty took effect but it was independence in disguise because Japan was obliged to sign a separate security treaty with the U.S. concurrently with the peace treaty, in which the presence of the Occupation forces-turned Japan defense forces (USFJ) was firmly guaranteed with all the bases and U.S. military personnel's perquisites remaining intact. U.S. bases in Okinawa were incorporated into this regime in 1972 when it was returned to Japan. 

Allowing the Henoko relocation means we sanctioned this regime to go on forever either in mainland Japan or in Okinawa. That's the reason why the Henoko relocation plan must be blocked by all means. As such, the Henoko relocation is not simply a local Okinawan issue but it is genuinely Japan’s national issue per se.

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Allowing the Henoko relocation means we sanctioned this regime to go on forever either in mainland Japan or in Okinawa. That's the reason why the Henoko relocation plan must be blocked by all means. As such, the Henoko relocation is not simply a local Okinawan issue but it is genuinely Japan’s national issue per se.

I certainly feel more comfortable with this security treaty to continue. Japan would be a dangerous country without the US here.

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

This heavy U.S. military footprint must come to an end someday if not now. For starters, it's the Marine units that are stationed in Okinawa for no other reasons than for their own sake that must blaze a trail.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

Abe will do as he is told by the US. When will the Japanese people admit that they are still under US occupation? By having its base in Japan the US is making Japan a target. As far as the US is concerned it is better that Japan is a target than mainland US. Surely, after over 70 years of US occupation, the Japanese people should demand that their sovereignty be restored and the US leave Japanese shores and take their bases with them.

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

If you think everything zones2surf says is true, it's your obligation to prove why he is right and disprove what I argue immediately above.

You've been disproved at every turn. Zones2surf comment stood on it's own just fine and did not need any further explanation from me.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Reckless,

I certainly feel more comfortable with this security treaty to continue. Japan would be a dangerous country without the US here.

Japan's security would be threatened without this so-alled Futenma's replacement being built in Okinawa? 

Tell me why this new base is absolutely necessary for the security of Japan when the most active elements of Okinawa-deployed Marines are to move to Guam, leaving command and support elements only in Okinawa, and when Japan and the U.S. have struck a deal to the effect that primary responsibility to defend Japan's territory rests with JSDF and not with USFJ.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

extanker,

You've been disproved at every turn. Zones2surf comment stood on it's own just fine and did not need any further explanation from me.

For clarification's sake, let me recapitulate what was at issue in the discussion between Zones2surf and myself. Zones2surf said the Futenma issue had nothing to do with international law but everything to do with bilateral agreements between Japan and the U.S.: that is, the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty and the 1971 Okinawa Reversion Agreement. In the 1971 agreement, it's stipulated that Japan, as a nation as well as nationals, waves all claims to whatever the U.S. military presence has caused.  

So is Zones2surf correct in his claim that the Futenma issue has nothing to do with international law? But despite the bilateral agreement, Futenma's illegality that it sits on illegally confiscated private lands remains the same. Article 46 of the Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land clearly states that "private property (in an occupied country) cannot be confiscated."

The 1971 agreement is like a contract between a thief and a fence dealing with stolen goods. However in detailed language the contract may be written, their dealings are illegal under a state's criminal law, and therefore the fact that Futenma sits on illegally confiscated private lands remains the same. The U.S. side can’t thus demand its replacement be built within Okinawa in exchange for its return. Futenma must be returned to Okinawa’s control with no conditions attached.    

extanker, you say you have disproved this claim of mine, but have you?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

extanker, you say you have disproved this claim of mine, but have you?

Yes, and so has everyone else. Repeatedly, at every turn.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

extanker,

Really? How and when?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

Are you serious???

1 ( +1 / -0 )

CrucialS,

Probably, you must be taking issue with what I said about Futenma's legal status: Futenma sits on illegally confiscated private lands whereby it's an illegal facility. The basis on why I say so is  Article 46 of the Convention Respecting the Laws and Customs of War on Land, that clearly states "private property cannot be confiscated" in an occupied country.

How do you justify the forceful confiscation by U.S. occupation forces of private lands during their administration of Okinawa?

You may cite the 1971 Okinawa Reversion Agreement as your basis, Article 4 of which says “Japan waives all claims of Japan and its nationals … arising from the presence, operations or actions of forces or authorities of the U.S. in these islands.”

I am contending this bilateral agreement is completely void under international law and so the illegal “actions of forces or authorities of the U.S.” can never be exonerated, whereby Futenma’s illegality remains the same as ever despite the bilateral agreement.

Do you think a contract over stolen goods between a thief and a fence, however explicitly it may be written, is effective under a state’s criminal law?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

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