politics

Tamaki invites U.S. lawmakers to Okinawa to see base reality

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Kind of late for the referendum but better late than never. But the outcome, which will come out against the base, will not deter the national government from continuing the base construction.

I don't doubt that Tamaki could get a politician to come to Okinawa, if he had the government here pay for it! I highly doubt any US politician is going to come here of their own volition.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Brilliant idea to jumpstart dialogue.

Love that the government of Okinawa wants to waste money on a referendum that will change nothing.

-6 ( +3 / -9 )

This is a kind of strange attempt. It is illogical. What he is trying to do is they are appealing to U.S. instead since the Japanese government does not listen to them. U.S. is not demanding to stick to Okinawa. It is the Japanese government that want U.S. Forces stay or remain in Okinawa.

-2 ( +5 / -7 )

If anybody actually takes him up on it, it'll probably be about as productive as the time NHK tried to bushwack one of the atomic bomb crewmembers. He'd flown over, and they roped him into an interview with family and hibakusha, who all tried to ambush him and shame him into apologizing for his mission. They kept pleading, nearly yelling and browbeating. Finally, one of them half screamed "Won't you apologize?"

The old man looked her right in the eye and said in no uncertain terms, "No."

That's about as productive as Denny's waste of money would be if anyone took him up on it. Perhaps more politic, but about as effective.

6 ( +9 / -3 )

They would probably love the local cuisine and shimazake!!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

No need to visit if you know geography. At this moment in time the base is a good Chinese deterrant in my opinion.

I don’t want a US withdrawal amid a Chinese expansion.

Tamaki’s just trying to stay relevant with his only card. He should pipe down and serve the people.

7 ( +10 / -3 )

I think he can get some Chinese government people to talk to before any American politicians. Maybe he can get them to build an island off the coast of Okinawa?

The airfield is moving to Henoko, and this is a Japan central government decision. American officials have always said that Henoko is the best solution.

5 ( +6 / -1 )

I would like to see the letter he sent to US lawmakers. So far the documents he has produced in English have been very shoddy. If he is serious about winning his fight he needs to step up his game and try to impress people. Otherwise he won't get very far.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Yes, please bring some US politicians to visit, so they can see that how overblown this entire situation has become. Once they see how much time has been wasted by Tamaki and his predecessors, maybe we can actually get something done.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Kiss off Japan. Okinawa returns to Ryukyu Kingdom and Tamaki will become the new King of Okinawa. They can return their glory again. Playing their own diplomacy between China, U.S. and Japan. It will be exciting.

-6 ( +1 / -7 )

Okinawa returns to Ryukyu Kingdom and Tamaki will become the new King of Okinawa.

You mean Tamaki becomes the mayor of China's newest prefecture...

1 ( +3 / -2 )

won't happen nice try

2 ( +3 / -1 )

The governor stressed both the Japanese and U.S governments should make efforts to reduce Okinawa's burden of hosting the bases and deepen ties for peace.

Not an unreasonable goal, though the pro base shills seem to be quite active and spreading their usual fear and disgust.

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

one serious question that I would like to ask is, does Tamaki plan to spend all his time in office being Anti-base or is he going to actually try and get some legislative put through that will actually benefit his constituents?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Schopenhauer,

U.S. is not demanding to stick to Okinawa. It is the Japanese government that want U.S. Forces stay or remain in Okinawa.

Whenever an Okinawa governor visits Washington and appeals them to reduce this extraordinary U.S. military footprint, it’s been usually the case that he is told he came to a wrong door and that he should go to Tokyo instead. So, Schopenhauer, you're talking on the same eye level as Japan hands in Washington or as an ugly chap subservient to them.

One poster I discussed with on a thread in the Washington Times opined that Okinawa’s plight is the end result of Japan’s attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, so that, he said, all responsibility for Okinawa’s current state of affairs rests with Japan.

It’s really disappointing that people of your ilk have no compassion for Okinawa and consider Okinawa’s plight as something totally detached from them.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@bones

you know the answer to that. At least until the base is built, then he’ll have to find something to do that might actually help his citizens. Hopefully he’s actually up to the task.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Kiss off Japan. Okinawa returns to Ryukyu Kingdom and Tamaki will become the new King of Okinawa. They can return their glory again. Playing their own diplomacy between China, U.S. and Japan. It will be exciting.

You mean Tamaki becomes the mayor of China's newest prefecture..

As long as Okinawa remains a prefecture of Japan, the bases, whether they are US or JSDF, will remain and Okinawa will continue hosting them. The only way Tamaki can get the bases removed is to push for Okinawan independence. Then he can order the bases removed. "The People's Republic of Ryukyu" (or whatever they want to call themselves) will no longer under Japanese jurisdiction and all military bases are on Okinawan land are illegal as there is no direct defense treaty with the U.S. allowing the base presence.

Then China will step in, offering participation in the "One Belt One Road" program and get them deep in debt with infrastructure improvements and other economic investments. China will begin territorial claims on the Ryukyu Islands including Okinawa and annex it as their own.

Of course the many leftwing and communist Okinawans would probably welcome being a Chinese prefecture. After all, isn't China more humane than the Japanese and U.S. "colonizers" as President Xi has demonstrated?

@Schopen, is this the "glory days" you had in mind?

No, Tamaki and the Okinawans would be better off cooperating with Japan and U.S. and finding common ground solution.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

voiceofokinawa

Life in mainland Japan is not easy at all. Life is hard and money scarce for most of us. Central government is debt ridden. Prefectures here are trying hard to make ends meet in decreasing and aging population. Okinawa has a good source of income - large subsidies from the central government. Poor prefectures here may be envying Okinawa. I think the population of Okinawa is increasing. In democratic country Japan, people have freedom to live anywhere they want. If people in Okinawa feel it is unbearable to live with U.S. Forces, they can move to anywhere in mainland Japan. But they do no. I think they have many good things to live in Okinawa than living in mainland Japan.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Gov Denny Tamaki on Friday called for U.S. lawmakers to visit the southern island prefecture to learn about the reality of American military bases there...

Why bother if you're not bringing boatloads of cash? You can't even get the U.S. lawmakers to give a rip about their own country or countryman, let alone someone else's.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

If he is serious about winning his fight 

If “he” is not the truth. It is “if the mass majority of occupied Okinawans”...who voted for him. Not to mention the environment.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

I agree with Halwicks comments 100 percent. There is no doubt PRC is eyeing Okinawa, and trying to turn Okinawans agsinst the Japanese and USA. All bases, both Japanese and USA ones, must remain. Does Denny really want to put Okinawans in danger of Communist rule under PRC, if the bases are not protecting them?

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

Dialogue, dialogue, dialogue.

Eventually, we shall have a Japan free of the occupying forces. Forces who will be freed up to go wage war elsewhere.

In the meantime, be wary of those who warn against an even worse aggressor. This is the usual ploy for dissuading those of us who wish for independence and a life free from colonialists/imperialists etc.

They tell us our economy will be ruined, someone else will threaten us, you're better off under our dominion and so on.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

The governor stressed both the Japanese and U.S governments should make efforts to reduce Okinawa's burden of hosting the bases and deepen ties for peace.

Not an unreasonable goal, though the pro base shills seem to be quite active and spreading their usual fear and disgust.

Seems to me you are the one that is being "shilled" by the anti-base activists.

The base burden will be greatly reduced when the construction at Henoko is finished. Just take the time to look at a map, everything that is military south of Kadena, with the exception of a small portion of Foster will be returned.

Take the blinders off.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Life in mainland Japan is not easy at all. Life is hard and money scarce for most of us. Central government is debt ridden. Prefectures here are trying hard to make ends meet in decreasing and aging population. Okinawa has a good source of income - large subsidies from the central government. Poor prefectures here may be envying Okinawa. I think the population of Okinawa is increasing. In democratic country Japan, people have freedom to live anywhere they want. If people in Okinawa feel it is unbearable to live with U.S. Forces, they can move to anywhere in mainland Japan. But they do no. I think they have many good things to live in Okinawa than living in mainland Japan.

Don't feed the animals! The population in Okinawa IS growing, and at a pace faster than anywhere else in Japan besides Tokyo.

Far too many people that to replace the base income with private money is going to be easy as snapping their fingers, bases replaced by tourism....just look at that, where the bases WILL be returned, NO ONE is going to build a resort hotel, no decent beach access, private landowners are not going to sell, it will be piecemeal development of houses, apartments, Lawsons and fast food! Oh another another AEON or San Ei/Parco. Plus a few panchinko's Mac's and A&W thrown in with Starbucks in between.

All service level 800 yen per hour jobs! The people will be dirt poor but what the hell, these anti-base folks want to take us back to Meiji anyway!

But they will lie to you, and tell you that people will more than make do, yet there are too many examples to the contrary.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

It may not be your intention, but some of you sound so heartless. The U.S. occupied and ruled Okinawa until 1972 and continues to use about 25% of its land for bases to this day. It’s probably not too much to say that the bases impact all life there. Think how frustrating that must be. There is good reason that 80% of Okinawans expressed a desire that the base in Futenma be moved. The burden on Okinawa is heavy.

It’s my impression that both the U.S. and the central Japan government want the bases there because of the strategic value of the location and because the people of the main four islands of Japan do not want more bases and have much more political clout and perhaps practice some discrimination against the people of Okinawa. This likely further adds to the resentment of the Okinawan people. As long as the U.S. Japan military aalliance holds, the U.S. will likely have the last say about the location of the bases.

IMO improvement is most likely to come, if it comes, when the world goes off fossil fuels and its nations no longer compete for natural resources. Then hopefully a deeper peace and spirit of cooperation will come to the region and these bases will no longer be seen to be needed.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

The U.S. occupied and ruled Okinawa until 1972 and continues to use about 25% of its land for bases to this day. 

Actually it is now under 20%

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Tanaki, the convenient half breed 

@bjohnson23, that's a low blow. I don't agree with Gov Tamaki on the base issue, but I wouldn't stoop to call him a "convenient half breed" or any reference to his racial ethnicity.

4 ( +4 / -0 )

The war was long ago finished.

But with the present president

Trump a war monger anything may happen not only japan but also neighbouring countries close to North Korea.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"I believe it would be the first step toward a real resolution of all the problems (for U.S. politicians) to see the bases, the lives of the people, the natural environment and also the warmth of the Okinawa people," 

The warmth of the Okinawan people? These would be the same ones who are protesting the presence of the American military in Okinawa, would it not?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Military policy that "Okinawa is shield against China" is plausible but doubtful.

Biggest Threat in Cold War era was USSR.

But,US base is not built nowhere at Hokkaido that is nearest prefecture to USSR.

North Korea is one of Threat but US base is nowhere at coast of Japan sea.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Schopenheuer,

If people in Okinawa feel it is unbearable to live with U.S. Forces, they can move to anywhere in mainland Japan.

What a twisted logic!  Isn't it the other way around? You're like saying the owner of a house had better move out of the house if the tenant is unbearably too noisy and boisterous, having binges every night..

Besides, if you think Okinawa benefits much from U.S. bases economically, which other poor prefectures is envious of, then why don't you work hard for relocating these bases, for starters, USMC Air Station Futenma, to any of such prefectures on mainland?

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Schopenhauer

Life is hard for most of us?

Income can often be equated with intelligence and personal ability.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Schopenhauer,

There's grave misunderstanding not only on your part but also on the part of many a mainlander that Okinawa is lucratively benefiting from U.S. bases. I have discussed the matter on other threads many times, which you apparently haven't read.

For you information, I suggest you to get access to:

https://www.pref.okinawa.jp/site/kikaku/chosei/kikaku/yokuaru-beigunkichiandokinawakeizai.html

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Hahaha... yeah, right. Tamaki would pick up the lawmaker(s) at airport and not allow them to talk to anyone but protestors waiting, then whisk said lawmaker to the residence of people who sit in the towers all day praying for an accident at a base so they have something to gripe about. He'll put them on a bus with a bunch of people paid money and with generic signs passed out to go along on a sit in most don't even know about before hand and say, "This protest is the reality! This old man's anger is the reality! Here... eat some delicious fish from the seas off the coast of Heneko! They want to KILL these!" etc. There's no way any one who came here would get an honest and objective view of things.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

smith...yeah that's about it in a nutshell!

Folks who protest the bases get a nice per diem payment, lunches, snacks, drinks. Hell it's a better part time job than working at one of those entry level jobs that the anti-base protesters are hoping to replace the bases with.

Funny thing, none of the folks protesting have any concrete suggestions on how to replace the money/income to the areas that are going to be affected by the base closures that occur after Henoko is finished. They all probably are expecting more handouts from the government.

Oh they say "tourism", to what AEON? Lawson? Right no thank you!

-2 ( +0 / -2 )

YubaruNov. 10  01:11 pm JS

The base burden will be greatly reduced when the construction at Henoko is finished. Just take the time to look at a map, everything that is military south of Kadena, with the exception of a small portion of Foster will be returned. 

Take the blinders off.

"No, the burden will be greatly reduced when the US returns ALL the land they occupy in Okinawa, it will only be slightly reduced when Henoko is built and that's only if the US keeps their word."

"As for wearing blinders, you and many others can't even acknowledge that America has more foreign military bases than any country on the planet and has been in more wars since WW2. Looking at the track record of every country on the planet, who's the real threat? It's time to pull your head out of the sand."

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

"No, the burden will be greatly reduced when the US returns ALL the land they occupy in Okinawa, it will only be slightly reduced when Henoko is built and that's only if the US keeps their word."

Now who is dreaming here, or should I say shilled? All the bases won't be returned in your or my lifetime. Problem isnt the US keeping its word, it's Okinawan politicians that lie!

And you say slightly? lol big time! The most congested areas in Okinawa have 2 major bases, Kinser, Futenma, and Foster, not to mention Naha port, and some smaller areas.

Close to a 35% or more reduction in land used currently.

The rest of your statement id off topic, so no reply needed.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Yubaru,

Problem isnt the US keeping its word, it's Okinawan politicians that lie!

Could you elaborate this sentence a little more in detail: how the U.S keeps its word while Okinawa politicians keep lying?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I answered, but as usual the powers that be here don't appreciate the truth, so you have to use your own means to figure out the fact.

The best example of Okinawan politicians not keeping their word....Onaga!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Ybaru,

Can you explain what was the lawsuit about which Onaga lost at Supreme Court but didn't abide by the ruling and so you call him a liar?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Did I mention Supreme Court ruling?

When you make an agreement with someone and break that agreement, no matter how you try to spin it, it makes that person a liar.

Why do people insist on asking questions they already know the answers to?

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yubaru,

What promise did the late Gov. Onaga make with either the U.S. or the central Japanese government as regards the new base construction in Henko which he later broke? He won governorship twice consecutively on the platform of never allowing the new base construction to be carried out.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Corrrection:

Onaga didn't run for the second term becvause of his sudden death, but his will of opposing the new base construction was firmly carried on to new Governor Tamaki.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Again people asking questions they already know the answers to, no need to respond to ilk that are just looking to nitpick!

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yubaru,

LOL.You have an obligation to answer the question to prove that you are justified in calling Okinawa politicians, spearheaded by Onaga, are liars.

The plane that crashed yesterday near Daitojima took off from the USS Ronald Reagan, that was participating in a joint exercise known as "Keen Sword". The aircraft carrier is home-based at Yokosuka under the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, supposedly, for the defense of Japan and its vicinity.

But this exercise is being carried out with the broader Indo-Pacific region in mind, way far beyond Japan and its vicinity. Isn't it in violation of the security treaty? If so, isn't the justification for the presence of U.S. forces in Japan, particularly in Okinawa, a big, big lie in light of your use of the word?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Someone makes an agreement to abide by a court judgement, he breaks the agreement, by not abiding by the judgement he agreed to in the first place.

Spin it however you want, he lied! And that is the LAST comment I make on the issue!

The governor told reporters on Dec. 22 he would promptly adhere to the ruling. "I have decided in my heart (to do this)," he said.

http://mainichi.jp/english/articles/20161223/p2a/00m/0na/004000c

The ruling marks the second straight judicial defeat for the prefectural government, following a December 2016 Supreme Court ruling that overturned the nullification by Okinawa Governor Takeshi Onaga of his predecessor's approval of reclamation work at Henoko.

So we can let it rest that he lied and went back on his agreeing to abide by the court ruling!

http://www.asahi.com/ajw/articles/AJ201803130044.html

NO ONE is arguing about the base relocation other than the legality of the application! Which in effect means that there is no valid legal reason to oppose it! NONE.

It's all about emotions, and thankfully governments are not ruled (hopefully) by emotional people,.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Yubaru,

In response to the Supreme Court ruling, the late Gov. Onaga told reporters on Dec. 22, 2017 that he would abide by the ruling. And so the first phase of land reclamation at Henoko resumed.  

Onaga's revocation of the land fill plan just before his death has nothing to do with this court ruling. He simply retracted the already-made sanction by the prefecture to go ahead with the reclamation work because hither-to unrecognized problems were discovered under the seabed where land reclamation is planned.

I've been arguing on the various threads of JT and elsewhere that Futenma sits on illegally confiscated private land and therefore that the U.S. has no legal right to demand Futenma's replacement be built in Henoko in exchange for the return of the base.

Futenma must be closed right then and there and the land be returned to Okinawa's control immediately with no strings attached.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

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