Halwick comments

Posted in: Law enacted to recognize ethnic Ainu minority as indigenous people See in context

I only hope Tokyo will not try to turn Ainu culture into a tourist attraction.

Oh they will and exploited as a novelty as well...like Okinawa. At a popular Japanese grocery store in California, I saw a display of Hokkaido cuisine items and a curious smaller subdisplay of Ainu cuisine. Like Okinawan cuisine, the Ainu cuisine was interesting and different.....and appeared to be healthy eating.

It's a shame the Ainu language and culture, like Okinawa's, were brutally suppressed and its people forced to assimilate. It's also a shame that they weren't recognized as indigenous until recently.

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Posted in: Abe abandons June timeline for Japan-Russia peace treaty: sources See in context

f you keep going into negotiations with the exact same position and no new concessions it is logical that nothing will happen.

And who do you suggest should be making the new concessions? Japan? Why must it always be Japan to make the concessions? Why not Russia?

It's interesting that a third independent party, the European Parliament, in the resolution “Relations between EU, China and Taiwan and Security in the Far East”, adopted on July 7, 2005, called on Russia to return to Japan the “occupied” South Kuril Islands.

Of course, Putin ignored the resolution.

It's strange that Russia takes this position -

Not really strange, just protective of territorial claims. Looking at a map of the region, the Kuril islands are strategic to Russia. Russian control and sovereignty over the islands guarantees a safe access through the Sea of Okhotsk to the Pacific Ocean for the Russian Navy. That's why they have been building military installations on the islands they occupy. Russia wants to expand its presence in the Pacific Ocean and strengthen its involvement in East Asian affairs.

A Russian military naval activity in the Pacific Ocean region north of mainland Japan, coupled with Chinese naval activities in the China Seas region south of the mainland Japan should be a major concern to Japan and the U.S.

The only solution is the return of the islands with Russian bases still on the islands. Japan has surrender soverentry of Okinwa to the Americans. It can do the same with the northern territories.

Is Japan so desperate for a peace treaty with Russia that Japan is willing to give up its territories where there is dispute? First those two remaining islands. What's next, renewed claim on Hokkaido? After Japan surrenders those islands, what if China renews its claims on Senkaku and Ryukyu Islands? Should Japan surrender sovereignty of those islands as well? Are you that willing for Japanese citizens to living under foreign occupation again?

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Posted in: 'A good day': Trump claims victory with Mueller report out See in context

Trumpophiles obviously haven't bothered to begin reading the report:

Who has read the 400 page report, anyone?

And I doubt the Trump-haters have either. In their eyes, Trump is guilty until proven guilty, guilty, guilty with even the slightest shred of doubt as proof of guilt. 

Look at the Trumpers here engaging in their fantasies and fairly tales

Look at the democrats and Trump-haters who can't get over Hillary's loss engaging in their fantasies and fairy tales as well. For nearly two years, the democrats and their allies tried to undermine and obstruct Trump's presidency.  If the Trump-haters can't get him on this, then THERE"S GOT TO BE SOMETHING OUT THERE to indict him on and use as a foundation for impeachment.  

Pelosi and her gang are already looking for new straws to latch onto Anything. They've done everything they can think of to slow Trump down, and yet he keeps moving forward.

Well it's obvious to everyone he tried to obstruct justice.

       Trying is not the same as “did.” We don’t convict people on “possible or likely or almost scenarios.”

                   Attempted murder is not a thing?"

That's right, spin more fantasies and fairy tale accusations.  So now we have Trump "attempted murder"?  This will be the democrat's new investigation?

It's been entertaining watching the liberals, Trump-haters and democrats implode.

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Posted in: China says Japan should do more to seek cooperation, not competition See in context

China says Japan should do more to seek cooperation, not competition

In other words, China wants a free reign to implement their "Belt and Road Initiative" globally without any interference or competition from Japan (or U.S.). 

It is China that needs to do more to seek cooperation rather than dominance. It should get smart and let Japan take the lead in any future partnership

Yes, it is China that needs to seek cooperation.  But the world should be wary of China cooperation.  The Chinese are also smart enough to let Japan (or the U.S.) take the lead and risk in opening new markets and then sneaking in and undercutting them, coupled with promises of investments and infrastructure improvement through the "Belt and Road" program. 

Any country that is lured into being a part of the "Belt and Road" should be wary.  The real underlying intent of the Belt and Road program is to provide China with the raw material logistics and resources for their military.  China should not be underestimated or viewed as "benevolent".

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Posted in: What happens to residents when an old age home goes bankrupt? See in context

Is there no non-profit operator in this sector?

For years in Southern Calfornia there was a particular non-profit nursing home that had mostly Asian residents. It was actually one of the better nursing homes. But it depended heavily on charitable contributions and government subsidies which over the years declined to the point where it was running in the red and operations couldn't be sustained. (So yes, even non-profit operators goes bankrupt.)

It limped along until it was sold to a FOR PROFIT management who found high turnover, short-term rehabilitation/therapy made it more profitable. The established long term residents (many whom are under Medicaid) are allowed to remain, but it is now more difficult to get a new resident in for long term unless financial ability can be demonstrated and sustained. It costs about $7,000 per month. Very few people can afford these rates, so in order to qualify for Medicaid, they spend down their assets to have no more than $2,000 and an annual income no higher than $12,000.

While my elderly mother was recovering from a stroke, one of the nurses (who was Japanese), opined that Japan has a much better elder care system. But as this article points out, even Japanese nursing homes have their problems and are not immune to financial woes, despite government oversight and subsidies.

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Posted in: Chief of staff says Democrats will never see Trump tax returns See in context

Speaker Pelosi has been demanding Trump to release his tax returns for this year and the previous 9 years.

Will Speaker Pelosi support legally requiring the speaker of the House to release his or her tax returns? Will Speaker Pelosi release her tax returns for this year and the previous 9 years?

You can bet the answer is "NO" and many in Congress has refused to. What are Pelosi and her cohorts hiding?

So why should Trump release his tax returns when the Democrats aren't willing to respond in kind?

IRS officials have said taxpayers under audit are free to release their returns. 

Just because the IRS says taxpayers under audits are free to release doesn't mean that they have to or are required to. They have the option and Trump has taken the option not to release, which is his privilege.

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Posted in: Trump says he made Golan Heights decision after a quick history lesson See in context

What isn't mentioned in the article and discussed is that a substantial amount of oil and natural gas reserves was discovered on the Golan Heights. That's the real underlying reason Israel wants it and U.S. supports it. Under the current legal condition, oil in the region cannot be commercially extracted and traded on the international market because it would violate UN resolutions . Recognizing Golan as a Israel territory would unlock the legal impasse and oil could be legally traded with the U.S. along with profitability to investors.

So that explains Trump's "snap decision" to recognize Israel's claims on the Golan Heights.

https://www.rt.com/op-ed/454231-golan-heights-oil-recognise/

The politics always boils down to oil and energy and who gains to profit from it, doesn't it?

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Posted in: Outnumbered and elderly, Okinawa protesters oppose U.S. military runway See in context

You say all things werel agreed between the two countries. Yes, they were, but you must take into account under what circumstances all these agreements were made.

Again, obfuscation deflection. In your mind, since the two separate defense treaties were signed under "questionable circumstances", therefore it negates Japan as an independent sovereignty. That's what you are implying. Yet you acknowledge the 1951 San Francisco Peace Treaty and concur with 193 UN nations that recognizes that Japan is an independent sovereignty. You are contradicting yourself.

Subsequent to 1952 when U.S. occupation of Japan ended, has the U.S. military exercised supreme power and authority, interfered and dictated Japanese internal civil affairs and Japanese way of life and usurped Japan's sovereignty?

I don't think so. At least not in the way Imperial Japan (and military) usurped Okinawa's sovereignty prior to and up to 1945.

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Posted in: New imperial couple to face heavy burden of tradition See in context

....Masako pledged to do her best despite feeling "insecure" about becoming empress.

If Masako was insecure about being Princess and the duties associated, wait till she becomes the Empress. I hope she understood that in the beginning when she married Prince Naruhito. But perhaps at the time she had "stars in the eyes" and the prestige and status of being a Princess overshadowed the reality.

Regardless. I think Naruhito has an opportunity to be more than a "Comforter-In-Chief" after he becomes Emperor. Now is the time to set aside old fashion Royal Family traditions and bounderies and redefine the role of Emperor and Empress in the new Reiwa Era.

Perhaps Masako can look to Princess Diana model for inspiration, find an endeavor to champion and support. Then hopefully she will find the freedom to be herself and flourish as a new type of Empress and inspire the new generation of Japanese women.

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Posted in: Japanese space probe drops explosive on asteroid to make crater See in context

Japan's space agency said an explosive dropped Friday from its Hayabusa2 spacecraft successfully blasted the surface of an asteroid..... 

So, where are the environmentalist outcry that humans (are again) destroying nature?

Scientists hope the samples will help them understand the history of the solar system, since asteroids are left over material from its formation.

As a taxpayer AND space engineer, I'd much rather we always send probes - hundreds of probes to every planet, every moon, every other body we'd like to study.

All very nice for academics and scientific knowledge, but what is the PRACTICAL use of this information and knowledge? How many probes have we sent to Mars over the last 50+ years and what have we learned and how are we using that knowledge for practical purposes?

The Hayabusa2 mission and the scientific studies it serves is impressive but how will the study of crater impacts help solve the energy, environmental and medical issues? How will it improve mankind's habitat here on Earth?

It (probes) will be cheaper than just a few manned missions to Mars, assuming we want them to live and actually return.

Back in the 1960s, I was an enthusiastic for manned missions as it was assumed at that time we were opening up a new frontier and had people willing to colonize space and the Moon. Probes were initially sent to explore. The next logical step was manned exploration missions and eventual colonization. The Apollo moon missions and anticipated manned Mars missions were compared to the Lewis and Clark Expeditions.

But the 1960s space exploration was premature; mankind was not ready for colonization of space, moon and human exploration of the outer planets. Fifty years later, there still isn't any serious intent to colonize space and the Moon. Nor is there any frontier spirit, political will and financial willingness to support such a long term venture. Furthermore, people nowadays are so hyper risk-adverse that they are afraid to take on such a risky venture.

It's not worth opening and exploring new frontier unless you have people ready and willing to take the risk to move there and establish a permanent colony.

I now view space exploration and manned mission to Mars with skepticism. For what purpose will this achieve? Other than to satisfy scientific curiosity and prove the technical feasibility and political prowess?

But when China or India send robot probes around the moon, or Japan does asteroid landings, notice the public reactions. It's as pathetic as the Olympics

Perhaps the reason is China is pursuing a more pragmatic and practical approach rather than spectacular gee-whiz demonstrations of space exploration technical feats:

https://thediplomat.com/2019/02/chinas-get-rich-space-program/

China is using its space program with more pragmatic and practical long term goals and as an expansion of its Belt and Road Initiative program. China's space program is aimed at generating long term wealth-creation through a space-based economy beginning with dominating space and establishing a lunar base, industrial mining and exploiting its rich sources of minerals. China has stated that "whoever conquers the Moon first, will benefit first."

But I prefer the U.S. (and Japan's) political and economic system to China's and would prefer that our system benefits, rather than China's. But we won't benefit unless we begin to view space with pragmatism, practicality and profitability.

There was a time back in the 1960s and 1970s that space was the perfect environment to manufacture new types of alloys and metals, crystals, etc., and the Moon held rich mining deposits just waiting to be exploited for Earthbound benefits and applications. Instead, NASA decided its goals of spectacular space feats were more important. Even the Space Shuttle and Space Station served nothing more than a platform for demonstrating school projects in space and rehashing old Skylab and Mir experiments.

Given China's behavior in the South China Seas and areas where its Belt and Road Program has been established, there is a concern that China will dominate space and establish a political framework that insists on loyalty to CCP that will threaten democratic access to space.

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Posted in: Outnumbered and elderly, Okinawa protesters oppose U.S. military runway See in context

Japan is supposedly a sovereign, independent state.

@voice, are you really saying Japan is NOT a sovereign, independent state and that the U.S. still has control and jurisdiction over Japan, not just in military matters, but in all matters including domestic and internal civil and political affairs, as it did during the 1945-52 occupation period? That's the conclusion your arguments leads to.

Do you accept Okinawa as a PREFECTURE of Japan and thus under its laws and jurisdiction and is subject to compliance as Japan central government deems necessary? Japan central government and the U.S. are in AGREEMENT that the Futenma base should be closed and its personnel relocated to Henoko. Furthermore, Japan is in agreement that U.S. military presence in Okinawa is a strategic necessity. If they didn't, they would have long ago pressed for the removal of not just the U.S. Marines, but ALL U.S. military base presence.

Anytime you and other like-minded feel that the Japan government is wrong, why don't YOU and like-minded petition Gov. Tamaki to push for a BINDING referendum for Okinawa to secede from Japan and establish itself as a independent and sovereign country. Then sovereign and independent Okinawa can demand the "evil U.S. military colonial occupier" out of Okinawa territory.

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Posted in: Clever kitty: Cats know their names See in context

Unbeknownst to humans, cats have always known their names. It's just that when your cat doesn't respond to you, she understands — she just doesn't care.

I agree. I'm convinced cats, in their own self-absorbed world, have their own private names that they only share among their own kind. The "nicknames" humans give them are only for convenience; they'll respond to that name when they feel like it.

Felines are not self aware, thus lack a self concept. It's a reflex action, if anything.

Well perhaps so, but their "reflex actions" indicates there's a calculated intelligence behind it. I've had cats for decades and observed they are arrogant, self absorbed and more concerned with their comfort and wellbeing. Their antics can be comical but I've found they have no sense of humour and when you laugh, they think you are laughing AT THEM and they'll stop, stalk off offended, and sulk and you'll have a hard time getting back to being in good graces with them.

That tells me that they have an inflated opinion of themselves and thus have self awareness of their sense of importance and position in life. They demand to be respected and treated as an equal, unlike dogs who are happy to serve and be subservient to their masters.

On the other hand, I've sometimes wondered why I tolerate and cater to the Cat's whims. Perhaps the same reason I sometimes cater to my Wife's whims and demands. Ah.....the similarity between Felines and (human) Females; once you understand and accept, then there's "peaceful coexistence and harmony".

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Posted in: Special celebrations planned for newlyweds at start of Reiwa era See in context

Let's hope marriages under the Reiwa era will be one of "beautiful harmony".

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Posted in: Clever kitty: Cats know their names See in context

Since ancient times cats were a god: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bastet

And they've never forgotten it.  In their world, cats rule, dogs (and humans) drool.

As for whether they're as smart of dogs, perhaps they are smarter; you'll never see a team of cats slavishly pulling a sled in sub-zero degree temperature.

"They seem to associate their name to some rewards or punishments..

Reminds me of teenagers; when you call them, they'll respond when they feel like it or if you have the reward (read: monetary allowance) for them.

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Posted in: Trump border emergency survives as House veto override fails See in context

So the House failed to override the veto due to falling short of the two-thirds majority required. No doubt the democrats will try to change THAT rule....and try again.

In the meantime, there is a new group of 2500 migrants heading toward the U.S.

https://www.usnews.com/news/best-states/arizona/articles/2019-03-26/new-migrant-caravan-of-2-500-sets-out-through-mexico-for-us

As the 2020 elections gets closer, there will be more and more migrant waves arriving at the border en mass attempting to force their way across the border into the U.S, and Americans (except democrats and illegal immigration sympathizers) will wish that wall, fence, barrier or whatever you call it, was built.

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Posted in: Kremlin says talks with Japan over territorial dispute could take years See in context

In other words, Russia is telling Japan to go pound sand. Keep trying to get the islands back and there will be no peace treaty.

Will the Abe's successor (now that he has announced he not going to run again) agree to give up claims on the islands? It all depends on how desperate Japan wants a peace treaty with Russia.

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Posted in: Abe suggests he won't seek 4th term as LDP president See in context

Perhaps PM Abe is hedging his bets that Trump won't be reelected and doesn't look forward to working with a leftist POTUS.

JCP and SDP, here's your opportunity to take over and oust the U.S. military occupiers from both mainland and Okinawa.

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Posted in: U.S. joins other nations in grounding 737 MAX jets See in context

Now the old saying is "If it's a Boeing, I ain't a going."

Airbus must be delighted at the news. No doubt more orders for them.

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Posted in: California governor places moratorium on executions See in context

So a guy is elected by “the people”. People don’t want something (abolishment of death penalty). Elected official does what he wants anyway against the will of the people. This is ok?

It's okay if the official is a democrat. They can and do anything they want.

If someone murdered Newsom's wife and kids in front of a crowd of people I wonder if he would reverse his decision...

It's amazing how many people who favor "humanity" for criminals quickly change their tune and demand harsher penalties when the violent crime directly affects them, especially if it involves the murder of a loved one, relative, friends, etc.

The death penalty is more for people who want revenge than anything else. It’s barbaric and does not work as a deterrent to crime. It’s common sense to abolish it.

Really? I suppose the convicted murderer's act is not barbaric? Oh I get it, the criminal is a victim of society, a misunderstood soul, not responsible for his acts and should be forgiven and given a lenient punishment, i.e., life in prison where he can receive free medical care, meals. room & board, etc.....all subsidized by the taxpayers at the cost of $81,000/year for 50 years, which equates to $4,050,000 over his lifetime).

One thing is absolutely certain: The executed criminal who is shown to be unable or unwilling to rehabilitate will never, ever commit violent acts against humanity again.

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Posted in: Teenager ashamed of given name 'Prince' adopts traditional one See in context

Good that "Prince" was able change his name to a name more to his liking. At least his mother didn't name him "Pikachu".

Yes, parents should think twice about the names they choose for their children as it will impact them the rest of their lives. 

Then there are some names that don't mesh with surnames well. Either their parents didn't think of it or had a peculiar sense of humour. For example: I knew a guy named Robert Bong. He didn't like the nickname "Bob", especially when used with his last name. Heard a classic story about a man whose surname was "Lear" and named his daughter "Cystal Shanda". 

In the Philippines, I've ran across women with names like "Queenie", "Princess" (both had expensive tastes), "Lovely" (who was anything but), "Girlie" (she was over 30 at the time), and so forth. They were happy and comfortable with their names, though. 

Ah, but as the saying goes, "What's in a name"....

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Posted in: Cabinet OKs bills to ban harassment, promote women's advancement See in context

It appears that Big Brother plans to shame companies into compliance.

Speaking of Big Brother, how will compliance be enforced? By "Kempetai Thought Police"?

Can we have the opposite please too

mmwkdw: You raise very valid points. Unfortunately thanks to the world of political correct double standards these compliance rules applies to men, but not to women. And when women breaks the rules, HR looks the other way and pretends it never happened. Instead it's the man's fault.

But women are just as prone to harassment and abuse of power.

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Posted in: Abe support rate falls; 69% want Okinawa vote on base issue respected See in context

The Okinawans are right. It is their island and Abe must respect the facts.

Okinawa is NOT a sovereign, independent country. Okinawa is a PREFECTURE OF JAPAN and under Japanese jurisdiction. The military treaties that allows U.S. military base presence on Okinawa was negotiated between Japan central government and U.S., not between Okinawa local government and the U.S. It is Gov. Tamaki who must respect the facts and cooperate with PM Abe to resolve the issue.

When ALL Okinawans (and not just a noisy political active minority claiming to "represent" Okinawans) no longer considers itself a "Japanese Prefecture", they can hold a referendum to go "independent", secede from Japan, establish an independent sovereign government and then order the removal of the U.S. military bases. Until then, they have to accept the Japan-U.S. decision to close Futenma and relocate to Henoko.

So Which other party JT-experts are pushing?

Communist Party.

Confirms my suspicions. Thank you.

Do Okinawans want Chinese to invade? Pure and simple

Not as invaders, but people like Gov. Tamaki, JT-experts like "voice" and the Communist Party in Okinawa do not consider China to be an enemy or adversary. They would probably welcome China as "guests" to invest in Okinawa under its so-called "One Belt, One Road" economic program. (By the way, accompanying the Chinese financial and infrastructure investment will be the Chinese military to protect said investments; don't be surprise if they occupy the military bases vacated by the departed Americans. Will Okinawa accept Chinese military occupation?)

But the stumbling block is the fact Okinawa is a prefecture of Japan and so long as it remains a Japanese prefecture, Japan central government would never allow Okinawa to "participate" in China's program.

But I think the plan to relocate Futenma to Henoko has nothing to do with deterrence or the U.S.’s war strategy, as attested by Lawrence Wilkerson, a retired U.S. Army colonel, 

Wilkerson's opinion is not supported nor shared by the U.S. and Japan national interests, regional threats, and the U.S.–Japan alliance’s military requirements.

https://www.heritage.org/asia/report/top-10-reasons-why-the-us-marines-okinawa-are-essential-peace-and-security-the-pacific#_ftn19

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Posted in: Trump signs 'Space Force' directive See in context

Yeah ! Space Force ! To absurdity and beyond !

But its okay for China and Russia to have their Space Force, eh?

How come you guys aren't critical and dismissive of their program?

https://thediplomat.com/2014/09/chinas-military-creates-new-space-force/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_Space_Forces

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Posted in: Trump says he has 'absolute right' to declare emergency See in context

Wait till a mega-mass migrant caravan from Latin America converges on the border timed for the 2020 election and those 16 states granting them sanctuary, welcoming them as new "Democrat voters" to ensure a landslide Democrat win.

When the American people realizes what is happening, it will be too late to build a barrier/wall/fence (or whatever you want to call it) to stop them.

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Posted in: Sanders says he's running for president in 2020 See in context

Congress needs to pass an emergency Constitutional amendment and let AOC run!

If not allowing her to run for President, then Vice-President.

A "Bernie/AOC" ticket running on the Green New Deal platform would be the Demo-Socialists dream team.

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Posted in: JAL plane skids off taxiway, closing part of Narita Airport See in context

What?! Pilot at fault?  Nobody here blaming Boeing (the same manufacturer who built the much-maligned V-22 Osprey and 737-MAX) for building a "defective airplane that skids on the runway"?!  Of course the pilot was probably trained by Boeing, too.

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Posted in: Over 20 dead in U.S. polar vortex; frostbite amputations feared See in context

So, instead of global warming, it's now global freezing?

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Posted in: Senate vote rebukes Trump on Syria, Afghanistan See in context

Its really strange to me to see the traditionally anti-military intervention members of Democratic party aligning with the neo cons and hawks in the Republican party on this.

That's because the neo cons and hawks in the Republican party are also against Tump in this instance.

At the moment, these Democrats and Republican factions have a common enemy: Trump.

Remember the old saying: "The enemy of my enemy is my friend"?

When this passes, the anti-military Democrats and the Republican hawks will be at odds again.

But its really strange to see the Democrats and Republicans (not to mention most JT posters here) who oppose U.S. meddling in other countries affairs, to be vehemently opposed to Trump who wants to get out of the region and concentrate on taking care of U.S. interests at home.

Again, no matter what position Trump takes, they will be opposed to it.

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Posted in: U.S. base transfer referendum for all Okinawa voters remains unclear See in context

Fearing a low turnout could undermine the validity of the referendum, Tamaki wants to conduct the referendum in all 41 cities, towns and villages, and has urged the five cities including Ginowan to take part in the referendum.

Yup, been saying all along, folks down here are apathetic to the issue.

And what if no clearcut resolution is reached, then what? More political delaying obstructionist referendum votes, thus delaying the closure of Futenma and relocation to Henoko? The problem will never be resolved. And what do the other 39 cities, towns and villages care about Futenma and Henoko? They have their own problems.

Let's be honest, Tamaki really wants the entire U.S. military forces, not just the U.S. Marines OUT of Okinawa. That's why he wants all 41 cities, towns and villages involved.

Would Tamaki prefer instead the JSDF to replace the U.S. military on the bases in Okinawa? Or does he wants ALL military forces including JSDF out of Okinawa and closure of all military bases ?  Let him be honest and straightforward about that instead of hiding his real intentions through meaningless referendums that only addresses part of the issue and offers no solutions.

It's time to fish or cut bait, as they say.  Why not a real binding referendum vote: "Do you want ALL military bases on Okinawa closed and ALL U.S. and Japanese military forces removed from Okinawa?" 

YES or NO. 

But this too will probably be a meaningless exercise and waste of effort as Okinawa is and remains a prefecture of Japan and under its jurisdiction, which includes compliance with its policies and directives. Mainland Japan government would ignore a "YES" vote as it and U.S. deems Okinawa to be an important buffer in the region and wants to continue hosting military bases there.

Independence from Japan is the only way Okinawa can be free from U.S. bases. . Independent Okinawa will have a free hand to deal with U.S. about the bases

Then hold a meaningful and binding referendum for independence and put it to vote. 

If and when that happens, Tamaki and Okinawans who do support independence will have to remember it will no longer be a Japanese prefecture and enjoy the economic benefits and protection as a Japanese prefecture. And the U.S. will also have no obligation in protecting Okinawa from a particular country that is expanding throughout the China Seas region.  

The Philippines kicked the U.S. military out. But after seeing China's expansionism in the area, they are begging for U.S. military to return and support in the region.

(Independence) Never going to happen. Okinawa is too far integrated into Japan for this to even be feasible.... 

Realistically true.  Japan central government will never allow independence for those very reasons.  Both Japan and U.S. agree Okinawa being militarily strategically important in the region.  

But if the majority of Okinawans are apathetic and uninterested in politics as suggested, the ones who do vote will no doubt be influenced by the very political active radical leftist forces who back the base protests, anti-U.S. sentiments and enabled Onaga and his successor Tamaki to be elected. They will make it appear that the "majority of Okinawans" support independence.  I hate to see Okinawa's fate determined by these noisy few but active and influential radical leftist factions.

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Posted in: Restoration of Nagasaki's famous A-bomb statue begins See in context

As for the lack of explanations for the creation and the ultimate decision to use the atomic bomb, people seem to overlook the fact there was a WAR GOING ON AT THE TIME. 

(By the way, Albert Einstein wrote a letter to President Roosevelt in 1939 warning Nazi Germany was making great strides in nuclear research that could lead to the development of a very powerful bomb that could destroy an entire city. That prompted the establishment of the "Manhattan Project".....to develop an atomic bomb to be used against Germany. But Germany surrendered BEFORE the bomb was ready for testing. So the bomb use was refocused to be used against Japan, who were still fighting.)

The Pacific War had gone on too long with too many casualties. The U.S. had just fought the Battle of Okinawa....the biggest battle in the Pacific War. Yet Imperial Japan still refused to surrender.  Yes, Japan was beaten, but they would never surrender. They were pulling back to reinforce reserves in anticipation to invasion. There was still some four million homeland defense forces in place on mainland Japan with the mentality "The sooner the Americans come, the better...One hundred million die proudly." (from a Japanese wartime slogan)

Operation Ketsu-Go documents the details of Japan's defense plans:

https://fas.org/irp/eprint/arens/chap4.htm 

https://fas.org/irp/eprint/arens/chap5.htm 

In wars, there are always research for new and more powerful weapons. At that time, the Americans viewed the atomic bomb as a new tactical weapons to be used against the enemy. The atomic bomb was viewed as the superweapon intended to convince the enemy of the futility of continuing the war and force a surrender and ending the war. It was an alternative solution to invasion of mainland Japan.

It also was intended to force Japan to surrender before the Soviet Union could invade and occupy the northern part of Japan and divide the country as postwar Germany was divided. The U.S. didn't want a repeat of the problems the Soviets were causing in Germany. 

Had the atomic bomb been not used, think about the invasion of Japan and its aftermath: War dragging into 1946, Japanese homeland military defense and civilians fighting U.S. forces in the south and Soviet forces in the north until the very end, resulting in millions of casualties and country totally destroyed. Postwar Japan...whatever is left...would have been a very, very different Japan and divided like postwar Korea. North Japan would have been occupied by Soviet Union with a DPRK-like regime while South Japan would have been a democratic country. 

Is this a better aftermath than what actually happened? 

The bomb did as intended and served its purpose. IT forced Japan to surrender and ended the war and avoided the invasion and postwar divided Japan.

By the way, people also forget that prior to 1945, the world was nuclear-free, but hardly peaceful. Subsequent to 1945, all wars and conflicts has been and continues to be fought with conventional weapons, not nuclear weapons. Abolishing nuclear weapons will make TOTAL War thinkable once again as it was prior to 1945.

Ironically, the use of the atomic bomb encouraged postwar Japan to become the conscientious reminder and promoter of world peace......a very different Japan compared to the militarist expansionist Japan during the 1930s and 1940s. Nuclear weapons also forced superpower nations like the U.S., Soviet Union, China, nations capable of waging total wars and mutual assured destruction, to regard such wars as "unthinkable."  In this way, nuclear weapons actually encouraged and promoted world peace.

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