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U.S. military base plans in Okinawa face new hurdle

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So it is the US that is going to break the deal, told you so. MCAS Futenma will remain open. All of the US bases will remain open.

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Futenma isn't going anywhere. This will definitely shake up the bee's nest that is Okinawa. This thread will definitely get over a 100 comments. Where's voiceofokinawa? Cleo? Ihavegreatlegs? SmithinJapan? Spidapig?

We knew this was coming. We've seen this before. It's getting old isn't it. What do you think? Is it just to make Japan upset with Obama's administration before the election? I think the timing of this report is the biggest question. Why now?

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Why would anyone in the USA care about whether Japan is upset with the Obama administration at elections time? Do you think that this would sway anyone's vote for/against Obama in the least? With all of the other problems in the USA I do not think so. Welcome to the real world where life does not revolve around Okinawa.

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Yawn !!!!!

Japan is focused on fukushima now.

Okinawans have to wait 2-3 years for tokyo to do anything.

Sorry Okinawa

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@Whiskysour: I agree...and there you have the OTHER side of the coin with two simple words...Sorry Okinawa!

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Thank you guys. You answered my question "Why Now?"

Japan is focused on Okinawa right now. They will probably miss this article altogether. The U.S. will slip a few of these changes by without anyone on the mainland even noticing.

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Yep NetNinja the bad US economy, the shafting of the troops in Korea and the call for the reducion of forces are all just really a machiavellian plan that really has everything to do with Okinawa. Them sneaky Americans are just so cunning.

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YuriOtani: "So it is the US that is going to break the deal, told you so."

You make it sound like it's only one party reneging (and it's not been decided yet). Japan was first to renege on the deal via Hatoyama and Ozawa, and if anything that probably weighed into part of the decision to announce this. I would imagine that through the idiocy of the aforementioned PM and his crony there are a LOT of people sick about the flip-flopping and so they are thinking of leaving it where it is once and for all.

NetNinja: Like I said to Yuri. Also, I might point out that on another relatively recent thread where the US said it might be difficult to relocate after all I and others did say, "Now BOTH parties are trying to renege". It's a shame, but I agree that the base is likely not going anywhere, and if it does the costs will have to be fronted even more by the J-government, and it'll take a lot longer.

I don't think they're trying to 'slip anything by', as you suggest, but I have noticed there's considerably less softening of the rhetoric used by the US side, and I think that's because they have more clout after the assistance provided in Fukushima and what have you.

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I also don't think the timing of this statement is coincidental. We'll soon see another PM in office (sixth in six years) and it's very possible he'll try to pull the same 'trust me' to both sides crap and attempt to pull out of the agreement. As such I can also see this as a kind of pre-emptive putting down of the foot. If the next PM DOES try to pull out of the agreement the US side can say matter-of-factly they had already decided to stay put (if it becomes finalized).

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The new bill would require the Defense Department to study the feasibility of relocating Marine Corps air assets to Chadian Air Base in another part of the island rather than build a costly new facility at Camp Schwab. OK, I give up, where the heck is Chadian Air Base? I spent 7 years on Oki. and never heard of this base.

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This fact may surprise some folks, but the US Congress (both House and Senate) is filled with insular, career, craven politicians who care about nothing else except their next election. On second thought, one puts twittering pictures of his genitals over his next election, but that’s another story…..

My sense is this language reducing the funding for the Guam move won’t make it into the final bill. But introducing it sends messages to two different audiences:

One, the US public. Both Democrats and Republicans want government spending reduced (with the exception of Medicare/Medicaid and Social Security). Every one of the pols on this committee will have a sound bite in the next campaign saying they did their best to cut needless, government waste…..(and as with most campaign rhetoric, it will be 100% false).

Two, the GOJ. This is another signal to the central government that if it doesn’t start taking action (rather than just talk) to move the FRF process along, the US will re-look at that portion of the 2005 Accords. I don’t think the US would actually give up on the FRF option, both governments have way too much invested in it, but I think they’ll threaten to……

What I worry about long term is that the US does become convinced that the GOJ just plain lacks the political will to make the FRF happen. In that case, they will drop the FRF option – and that means that Futenma remains open, along with Kinser, Foster, Lester and portions of Foster and the 8,000 Marines and their families stay. I think that’s the absolute worst option for the Okinawa people, though I think that result is exactly what the elites (politicians, academics, media) on Okinawa desire.

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Makiminato and Awase closed down and moved to Chibana without a peep. Next is Futema and all hell breaks loose.

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YuriOtani: "MCAS Futenma will remain open. All of the US bases will remain open"

After Operation Tomodachi you have no complaints about this, right?

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"After Operation Tomodachi you have no complaints about this, right?"

you got to be joking!!

irrelevant.

The usa want to be in Japan period.

The burden they put on the locals is always there. Whether there are some good america actions doesnt wipe away those problems and burdens.

There was also maybe some pretty poor american actions too during the recent times. Maybe if they just did some more scare mongering then some of the families would leave again like they did after the fukushima panic and maybe they could lower costs.

Maybe if the USA didnt build such poor nuclear reactors for Japan there wouldnt be panic, but anyway. Funny how the Japanese is not trying to sue America like in the Toyota USA mindset....so may just the recent good behaviour is just some payback or covering themselves.

But anyway all of the above re the recent event is irrelevant. The usa want to be here and the burden continues on locals.

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Be advised that Kaiser built an entire base on Tinian for a Division of Marines sixty years ago and then they moved the people of this Base to Okinawa, to offer protection for the Japanese islands, which included Okinawa. This base on Tinian is presently occupied by a Chinese textile operation and now owned by the United Nations. The airfield on Tinian could be used as soon as the UN gives it a nod. At one time there were plans to move a Marine Division to Saipan, Tinian andRota - with headquarters on Guam - Don't be too surprised if this action takes place in the tomorrows to come.

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Committee chairman Sen Carl Levin called the plans “unsustainable and incredibly expensive.” The committee wants more studies conducted before the plans are funded.

Sometimes you just have to chuckle at politicians. The "plans" involved years of studies already - studies that cost the U.S. taxpayer plenty of cash before the plan was greenlighted. Now, Senator Carl Levin thinks the plan is “unsustainable and incredibly expensive” and wants to solve that problem with MORE studies on the taxpayer's dime. If you want to put a stop to this Chinese Fire Drill, require these additional studies to come out of the salaries of the members of the Senate Armed Services Committee. That study would disappear QUICKLY.

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Maybe if the USA didnt build such poor nuclear reactors for Japan there wouldnt be panic, but anyway.

Ridiculous. You're blaming the 40+ year old reactors, rather than the poor design of the entire site itself? (Inadequate seawall, the backup generators beneath sea level...)

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I agree with Deplore. The reactors were good. It was the poor planning by the Japanese for back up power and cooling essentials.

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To lincolnman:

"And he said unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar's, and unto God the things which be God's."

Are those bases lincolnman mentions Caeser's or God's? Is the United States a divine state that has a God-given (inherent) right to attach conditions when rendering "the things which be Caesar's"?

lincolnman must know the tragedy we are having today derives partially from this self-righteous elitism of America's.

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Voiceofokinawa, my friend;

Though I know it won't do any good, I only offer the following:

lincolnman must know the tragedy we are having today derives partially from this self-righteous elitism

The only elitism I am aware of is that clearly practiced by the politicians, academics and the media on Okinawa, who continue to refuse any attempt by the US or central government to reduce the US military presence on the island, continuing to subject their own citizens to the "burden" they so hypocritically rail against.

Bottom-line - I support a plan to close Futenma, return Kinser, Lester and portions of Foster, and move 45% of the Marines on the island to Guam, significantly improving the safety and daily life for the Okinawa people - and you don't.

And as we are quoting the bible for guidance, may I offer this to you and the other elites.....

When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child; when I became an adult, I put an end to childish ways. I Corinthians 13: 11-13

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Moderator: Stay on topic please, and no further biblical references.

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Serrano, oh just saying it was doomed from the start. Why because the politicians like it this way. Who is to blame? Not sure if it really matters.

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Why should the Japanese government pay for the relocation of US military bases?

These are American installations, aren’t they?

The whole thing is beginning to make less and less sense.

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voiceofokinawa:

To lincolnman:   I've just noticed your post today (June 25) and this is why my response to you has been so delayed.

Do you want to say by quoting from the bible that I speak like a child and you like a matured adult? If so, then I want to return it all to you.

You say the U.S. will return Kinser, Lester and portions of Foster. But what does the 2006 Roadmap say about these bases? It says "All functions and capabilities that are resident in facilities designated for return, and that are required by forces remaining in Okinawa, will be relocated within Okinawa. These relocations (orig.) will occur before the return of designated facilities." Can you call this "return" in the true sense of the word?

You also say "45% of the Marines on the island to Guam" will be moved to Guam. But they won't move to Guam until the infrastructure is completed there for the marines and their dependents.

And who's going to foot all these bills? One hundred percent (more than $12 billion) for Futenma's case and 70 percent ($6 billion) for the Guam infrastructure construction are all footed by Japanese taxpayers. In 2006, the Pentagon announced that Japan's share of expenditures for the U.S. military realignment in Japan would amount to about $37 billion.

Do you think I think like a child and you like an adult? .

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Okinawa is a bit of a tip anyhow. If Japan didn't attack the allies in the first place the bases wouldn't be there so blame Tokyo and stop whinging.

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The USFJ's military realignment is just like its own house cleaning. Why should they cause so much trouble to Okinawa and demand so much money from Japanese taxpayers?

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To steve`CPFC,

So you think the Japan-U.S. relationship is the victor-loser one of WWII even to this day? What a mind-boggling thinking! Your logic and intimidation are no different from that of a street gangster.

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voiceofokinawa; Don't put worlds in my mouth, thank you. I am saying teh peopl of Okinawa should be showing more of their annoyance with Tokyo not America. I am no fan of the US military of US policies BTW.

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steve@CPFC:

Don't put words in your mouth? But you said, and I quote, "If Japan didn't attack the allies in the first place the bases wouldn't be there." Your logic is that since Japan started the war, as the result of which the U.S. military is still in Okinawa, I should blame Tokyo first and foremost, not the U.S.

In other words, you want to say that if the Okinawa people have any complaint about this excessive U.S. military presence today, blame Tokyo, that started the war, and not Washington, that won the war.

This is what I call a mobster's logic.

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voiceofokinawa; 1/ Correct, America is there due to Japanese military aggression.

2/ Japan is a soverign state and can demand America to leave at any time it wishes. The laws for Okinawa are made by elected leaders in Tokyo. Complain to them if you wish to have no bases, they make the decisions.

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steve@CPFC:

But you may be speaking your mind very frankly, unlike those insidious Japan hands in the U.S. government. They are telling the Japanese people that the U.S. presence in Japan is to defend Japan. USFJ commanders even say that their men and women in uniforms are ready to give their life to defend Japan. That's the reason why they are in Japan, they say.

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steve@CPFC:

Thanks for your frank admission that the U.S. military presence in Japan is the result of Japan's aggression during WWII. Underlying this claim, however, is that the Japan-U.S. relationship is the victor-loser one of WWII even to this day, as I pointed out in the above post.

You say, "Japan is a sovereign state and can demand America to leave at any time it wishes." This is exactly what the poster Fadamor said in his comment posted under "U.S. military base plans in Okinawa face new hurdle."

You are completely wrong here. Japan is not a sovereign state as you perceive it is. Are you oblivious of what happened to former Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama, who stopped short of saying what you suggest but was kicked out of office due to Washington's outrage and blatant pressure?

This means the real culprit causing trouble in Okinawa is no other than Washington. That's the reason why our complaint must be directed against Washington first of all, not Tokyo.

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There is a big problem in Japan and that includes Okinawa of blaming foreigners for most of Japan problems. I don't care for large militaries or for any curent governments of the world.

In fact if a Japanese PM thought that his party would get continude support of the Japanese people then there would be no reson for them to ask America to leave. America can moan and groan and pressure as much as they wish but they cannot change the matters. America placed huge pressure on Japan due to trade tariffs in the '80s but Japan stood firm and acted in what they decided was their best interest,

If the Japanese Gov decide the bases stay then they have decided it is in the Japanese interest. whtehr they are right or wrong matters not to them, nor do the feelings of those effected by the matter.

America will take no notice of complaints by Japanese citizens and will state that Japan wants the bases for security.

The best way to be rid of the US bases is for Japanese to rally support in Japan, get a backbone and demonstarte massively and show they mean action. The lack of action by Japanese in this matter is due to the general apathy towards anything political which allows them to be wrong year after year.

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steve@CPFC,

I wrote that our complaint must be directed against Washington first of all, not against Tokyo. That doesn't mean we are reticent about Tokyo's inaction and inability when dealing with the Okinawa problem vis-a-vis the U.S. military bases. But our criticism against Tokyo is different in nature from that against Washington.

Domestically, we are voicing our sharp criticism against Tokyo for its servility and submissiveness toward Washington, which has characterized Japan's foreign policy toward the U.S. since Japan's recovery of sovereignty, "independence," in 1952. That's why I say the Japan-U.S. relationship is the victor-loser one even to this day, which fact you wound up to admitting.

You won't disagree with me in that such abnormality must be corrected sooner or later. But you must also admit that it is the more powerful, the U.S., that holds the key to the solution of the whole problem.

That's why we must keep voicing our complaint against Washington first of all.

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(Correction of the last sentence in my post immediately above)

That's why we must keep voicing our complaint against Washington, a vicious manipulator behind the scene, before everything.

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(Further correction)

That's why we must keep voicing our complaint against Washington, a hive of vicious manipulators behind the scenes, before everything.

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Japan does not need American soldiers on our land.

Our ancestors are watching us with shame.

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