About the U.S. base in Okinawa

Japan and the United States have had military ties, called the Japan and the U.S. Security Treaty, for almost 60 years, which allows the U.S. military to stay in Japan.   The problem is 75% of the bases are concentrated in Okinawa, the southern small island prefecture.  In fact, Okinawa experienced a very tragic history during WWII, with many of the residents being victimized.  Now after the war was over, they are still suffering from military existence day and night. 

The base issue in Okinawa has been there for 60 years, but suddenly it has got media attention since the new government led by the Democrats won the election and tried to keep their campaign pledge to alleviate the suffering of Okinawa people.

BBC news:http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8349083.stm

The Japan Times: an opinion column by Gregory Clark  “U.S. base problem drags on.”  (you can find the link to Japanese translation on the bottom of the article.) 

http://search.japantimes.co.jp/cgi-bin/eo20100311gc.html    

 This is a big issue and commenting in English can be really challenging…     However, I think it is worth thinking and discussing.  

  Hana 

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2 Comments


  1. Having lived in Japan and being an American I know this is a sensitive issue. I used to live in an area near a U.S. military base in Japan. It sometimes was a source of tension due to the behavior of some military men with the local population. On the other hand it does bring money to the local economy, but also creates other negative effects.

    In terms of Okinawa, it certainly is a very different part of Japan (not just in the weather, but also culturally). I also think it’s one of the poorest prefectures in Japan.

        Posted April 27, 2010, 6:32 pm

  2. This is exactly what we talked about in the freshman camp before our entrance ceremony.This is really difficult issue because there are positive and negative effects.We all know that some military men did bad things,which is calling out withdrawal from Okinawa.

    But when you find youself looking from a different aspect,U.S military has been like a public asset.It’s like the air we breathe everyday.We all can enjoy the benefit,national defense.

        Posted May 3, 2010, 5:25 pm

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