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Okinawa residents seek U.S. base referendum with 93,000 signatures

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I’m interested to see how this vote ends up. Anyone see how they plan to word the refferendum? I imagine it will be a very leading one.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

CrucialIS,

How about providing us with data that is indicative of the overwhelming support of the Henoko Relocation plan by the people of Okinawa.

Only needed 23, 000 signatures but got 93,000 and from May 23 to July 23 a 2 month period or an average of over 1,500 per day which is not an easy task on Okinawa.

Why don't you start getting signatures of eligible voters who say they want MCAS Futenma to be relocated to Henoko and see how many you get in the next 2 months?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

93,000 out of a population of 1.4 million...

1 ( +4 / -3 )

if they have the signatures, then it it over. america out and mass tourism and prosperity in.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

So Okinawa if the BASES leave what will you do for income???? You make more babies than the rest of Japan and yet have the highest poverty rate and welfare rate.  That welfare rate will only climb higher after the BASES LEAVE, meaning my taxes and the rest of Japan too. 

Can you provide an answer to how you will support yourselves financially after you get all that land back.  NO, you cannot, because all you have is tourism nothing more.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

93,000 out of a population of 1.4 million...

...is a tremendous number of signatures.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

CrucialIS,

93,000 signatures out of eligible voters which were verified by local election boards not the total population of Okinawa that you implied which makes the number impressive. The last thing the Central Govt. wants to see is a referendum about Henoko. I personally believe that if the people are given a chance to vote just on the relocation of MCAS Futenma to Henoko only then they will reject the relocation plan. The problem is the Central Govt. will not accept the results if it goes against them just like they refused to accept the results of the people of Nago voting against the relocation plan in 1997.

0 ( +4 / -4 )

... Candidates who support relocation for Futenma have won every local election since the end of 2016. Pretty indicative of the support. The only claim that the opposition has is Gov Onaga’s win in 2014. Times have changed, my friend. Okinawans are focused on other issues

0 ( +1 / -1 )

had their validity checked by local election boards.

I'd recommend checking their validity by someone not local. Otherwise, it's pretty much the same as an accountant auditing themselves.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Your post is written as if the referendum had already taken place. It hasn't.

Thank you but no, my post is written exactly how it should be. I am refering to checking the validity of the collected votes.

From the article:

"The civic group collected signatures for two months from late May and had their validity checked by local election boards."

0 ( +1 / -1 )

extanker,

Vote counting in either gubernatorial elections or referendums as such is done justly and fairly.  I assure you there'll be no rigging in vote counting as was suspected in recent U.S. presidential elections.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

voice

I trust all those votes to be real about as much as I trust all the anti-base protesters are actually from Okinawa and not paid to be there...

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Yes, I'm sure you must be right, the side you don't agree with is the only one that does anything underhanded or dishonest.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

This is the same argument you always try to engage in. This time I'm not biting.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

I sometimes wonder what patriotism means to Americans.  A dictionary defines it as "love of and devotion to one's country."  Nothing wrong with it, I think.

But through discussions with seemingly American posters on JT, I've found that many Americans take it as an act to bring immediate material profits to the U.S. regardless of whether or not such action by them may be detrimantal to another country or region and may eventually hurt Americans thenselves

0 ( +1 / -1 )

But through discussions with seemingly American posters on JT, I've found that many Americans take it as an act to bring immediate material profits to the U.S. regardless of whether or not such action by them may be detrimental to another country or region and may eventually hurt Americans thenselves

In other words, greed is the same as patriotism for them.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

In other words, patriotism is the same as greed for them.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

In colonial days it was taken for granted for Western powers to exploit other countries and regions to the bone. The dominating principle running behind it was greed and egotism. 

No doubt, there's a vestige of colonialism robustly alive in Okinawa vis-à-vis the U.S.

Haha! Hey, here’s a hint. Japan doesn’t have a very good history of exploiting other countries either. You probably didn’t think that one through did you.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I’m not refuting your post because I’m not even arguing with you. I’m just pointing out the irony of your using America’s past as some sort of example, when Japan’s past was equal if not worse. Meaning, it’s completley irrelevant. But in the end, you’re really just arguing with yourself at this point and I’m just here getting a kick out of listening to your rambling.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

In the 2014 Gubernatorial election there was a total of 691,343 votes making up 64.13% of eligible voters. 691,343 is 64% of 1,078,033.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Okinawa_gubernatorial_election,_2014

Although it’s more likely the number of eligible voters has increased with Okinawa’s population growth i’ll use this data. The 93,000 is roughly 9% of eligible voters. 9% doesn’t indicate anything and is not impressive.

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

The government will ignore any referendum result they do not agree with.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

CrucialIS,

Sorry my friend but all of my years on Okinawa have taught me that the elections on Okinawa are not a barometer of the people's true feelings. They vote in cycles and they will vote the LDP in for 4 or 8 years and then vote them out again. You are a LDP supporter but do you really think the new LDP mayor of Nago is going to bring economic prosperity to that city? Do you really think that companies with good paying salaries are coming to Nago? if Sakima is elected governor do you really think that he will bring economic prosperity to Okinawa? Do you really think that companies with good paying salaries are coming to Okinawa? The LDP politicians will be voted in for a cycle but once the people of Okinawa realize that they can not deliver on their promises to make their lives better then they will be voted out again.

Anyway, I personally hope the referendum takes place and the people of Okinawa have the say in this matter that they deserve and that the central govt. will be forced to accept the results of the referendum no matter what it is. And people should never forget the real reason that MCAS Futenma was decided to be closed and the U.S. Marines are getting this new facility built at Henoko courtesy of the Japanese Taxpayers and that reason is the kidnapping and brutal gang rape of a very young girl by 3 Marines.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

CrucialS,

The number of signatures required by law for organizers to be able to request a referendum be held is 23,000 at least, and so it's significant the citizens group collected 93,000 signatures in such a short period of time.

The signature campaign took place a bit too late, though. It even took some time for the general public to come to know such campaign is actually being carried out.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

extanker,

Your post is written as if the referendum had already taken place. It hasn't.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

extanker,

I trust all those votes to be real about as much as I trust all the anti-base protesters are actually from Okinawa and not paid to be there...

There're morbidly pro-U.S. ultra-rightist factions in Okinawan society who are hell-bent on propagating such fake news as you believe: protestors at Henoko are paid for their sit-ins and not all demonstrators are from Okinawa. The claim that Henoko demonstrators are paid professionals is a blatant lie propagated by these people, but there's a certain truth in the claim that some of the demonstrators are non-Okinawan but are Koreans and Japanese mainlanders. 

Koreans have a similar problem on Jeju Island to the one we have in Henoko, where a huge naval base is being constructed in defiance of Jeju islanders' opposition. If there're a few mainlanders among Henoko demonstrators, that's because they embrace problems derived from the U.S. military presence in Okinawa as their own. They clearly recognize the relocation issue is not a small local issue but a broader one -- Japan's central  issue that must be tackled by the nation as one, so that more mainlanders should participate in Henoko sit-ins, I think.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

In colonial days it was taken for granted for Western powers to exploit other countries and regions to the bone. The dominating principle running behind it was greed and egotism. 

No doubt, there's a vestige of colonialism robustly alive in Okinawa vis-à-vis the U.S. .

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

extanker,

You didn't give any convincing counterargument to refute my post, only saying that Japan did the same and thus intimating there's nothing wrong with the U.S. controlling Okinawa like a colony. Yes, Japan emulated Western powers, diligently following their colonial footsteps.

You may thus categorize pre-war Japan together with the Western powers. But you must know that that Japan was crushed to the nail with two atomic bombs dropped on the two cities.

Japan’s imperial past doesn’t justify this huge U.S. military footprint in Okinawa. Imperial Japan’s emulation of Western colonialism was completely wrong and so is the U.S. controlling Okinawa like a colony

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

extanker,

I’m not refuting your post because I’m not even arguing with you

You may not be arguing with me, but you’ve been hell-bent on supporting the Futenma-to-Henoko relocation plan which Washington took the initiative to suggest and Tokyo agreed to as a suitable relocation site. On the other hand, I've been saying Futenma must be returned immediately without any strings attached.

Futenma must be returned right then and there, unconditionally, because the land it sits on is stolen property, so to speak. There's no room for negotiation for the return of stolen property anytime, anywhere.

You've been posting your opinions supporting the relocation plan and trying to reject opinions such as mine. In other words, you've been arguing with me in spite of yourself as regards which is right, anti-relocation or pro-relocation.

Ashley Shiba,

Do you really believe Okinawa can't survive economically without U.S. bases? Yes, there were days when Okinawa's economy was largely dependent on U.S. bases, but today revenues derived from U.S. bases account for a little more than 5%. The time has changed and many businessmen and industrialists have begun to say U.S. bases are hindrance to economic development for those bases occupy prime land on Okinawa for business activities.

Look at the Omoromachi District in Naha. This area used to be a sprawling housing area for U.S. military personnel with local men and women working for them as gardeners and house maids. Today, it's one of the booming business districts in Okinawa with companies employing hundreds of office workers.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Correction:

Look at the Omoromachi District in Naha. This area used to be a sprawling housing area for U.S. military personnel with local men and women working for them as gardeners and house maids. Today, it's one of the booming business districts in Okinawa with companies employing tens of thousands of office workers.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

But supposing the answer comes out as "no." What will Abe and gang do then?

-2 ( +3 / -5 )

so if by the tiny chance that the referendum is held and it is successful against the base relocation then what, Futenma will just stay where it is, talk about creating more misery for yourself.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

extanker,

I'm not saying the other side is "underhanded and dishonest" simply because they disagree with us.

A temporary air field was built at Futenma toward the end of World War Two for U.S. military aircraft to engage in bombarding missions targeting mainland Japan. At this point, no one would complain that the base was illegally built on private land in violation of international law. 

If the U.S. had returned the land as soon as its mission was over, no problem as we see today wouldn't have occurred. 

But the temporary air field was turned into a permanent air station while area residents were herded in camps like POWs for two years after the war. 

Now, the U.S. side says it will return the land only if its replacement with a lot of value added were provided at Henoko. 

Can you reject our claim the U.S. action and demand are’nt fair and honest?

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

BertieWooser: "But supposing the answer comes out as "no." What will Abe and gang do then?"

He'll explain to people like yourself that it's your own fault you're hoisting up the Chinese flag. And before you go gloating like it's a done deal, remember it was Onaga who refused to hold a referendum, because he knew he did not at all represent the majority of the Okinawan people.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

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