Tag Archives: Okinawa

Okinawa: Caught between a rock and a hard place

US Marines discharge Perfluoro octane sulfonic acid (PFAS) into the sewers. Okinawan officials are “furious” while the Japanese government is complacent | PAT ELDER

U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma is located in densely populated Ginowan City, Okinawa

Residents holding placards reading US Military out protect the relocation of the new U.S Marine Airbase construction on...
Okinawan residents call for removal of U.S. military bases. [Source: teenvogue.com].

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Hurricane Juan and Depleted Uranium

Canadian navy and weapons of mass destruction

This Saturday, September 29, marks 15 years since Hurricane Juan ripped through Halifax in the middle of the night toppling trees, smashing boats and knocking out power for many days and even weeks in some neighbourhoods. Wind speeds of up to 178km an hour were recorded at McNabs Island in Halifax Harbour. Amunition shells from the 1940s and “other debris” were being washed ashore. | The late MITZI BOWMAN* with TONY SEED

BLUE ROCKS, NS (October 24, 2003) – THE Halifax Chronicle Herald reproduced on October 4, 2003 a capsule commentary from the Canadian Press that the Canadian Forces were cleaning up unexploded shells from the 1940s (WW2) “and other debris”.

Why isn’t the Chronicle Herald telling us what this “other debris” is or could be? Continue reading

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Warship Watch. RIMPAC war games heighten tensions in Asia Pacific

2018.07.11-Hawaii-RIMPAC-protest-MaluAina-04Three articles on the world’s largest naval war exercise and Canada’s participation, the opposition by the people of Hawai’i and the geopolitical context.

By YI NICHOLLS

The U.S.-led naval war games, Exercise Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC), are underway from June 27 to August 2 around the Hawaiian Islands and southern California. The last RIMPAC exercise was held in 2016. A May 30 U.S. Navy press release informs, “Twenty-six nations, 47 surface ships, five submarines, 18 national land forces, and more than 200 aircraft and 25,000 personnel will participate in the biennial Rim of the Pacific (RIMPAC) exercise […]”[1] Canada is one of the participating nations. Continue reading

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Thousands protest against new US military base in Japan

According to a 2010, survey 71 per cent of Okinawans considered that U.S. Marines are not necessary on the Japanese island. 

Japanese protesters raise placards saying "Do not yield to authority" during a rally to protest against a controversial US airbase in Naha, Okinawa, May 17, 2015 | AFP

Japanese protesters raise placards saying “Do not yield to authority” during a rally to protest against a controversial US airbase in Naha, Okinawa, May 17, 2015 | AFP

teleSUR (May 18) – Tens of thousands of people have taken to the streets of Okinawa’s capital, Naha, Sunday to protest against the building of a controversial U.S. marine airbase in the southern Japanese island. According to local police at least 35,000 people gathered in the massive rally. Continue reading

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Marching towards disaster: What’s really behind the US push in the Asia-Pacific?

US war preparations in Asia

Young Japanese women hold banners during a major rally against the US military at a park in Okinawa after a string of serious misconduct by its soldiers including alleged rapes in the Japan's southern island province on March 23, 2008. More than 6,000 people took part in the rally on the island, home of more than 40,000 US troops stations in Japan. (TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images)

Young Japanese women hold banners during a major rally against the US military at a park in Okinawa after a string of serious misconduct by its soldiers including alleged rapes in the Japan’s southern island province on March 23, 2008. More than 6,000 people took part in the rally on the island, home of more than 40,000 US troops stationed in Japan. (TORU YAMANAKA/AFP/Getty Images)

On the sidelines of the Group of Twenty (G20) Summit in Brisbane on 15–16 November 2014, US President Barack H. Obama delivered a keynote speech to diplomats, policymakers, faculty members, and students at the University of Queensland on the United States of America’s foreign policy and his so-called “Asian pivot” or “pivot to Asia.”

By MAHDI DARIUS NAZEMROAYA

In 2013, a report by Brian Andrews and Kurt Campbell for the British think-tank Chatham House described Washington’s redeployment efforts in the Asia-Pacific region like this: “The United States government is in the early stages of a substantial national project: reorienting significant elements of its foreign policy towards the Asia-Pacific region and encouraging many of its partners outside the region to do the same.” Continue reading

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Okinawa: People again vote to remove US military from their islands

2014.12.04.Okinawa-Protesters-surround-OPG-build-RyukyuShimpoThe Japanese general election for members of the House of Representatives turned into a referendum in Okinawa on the post-WWII U.S. military occupation. Voters in the four ridings in Okinawa rallied around candidates firmly opposed to the construction of yet another U.S. military base on their islands.

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US chemical weapons dumped in Okinawa

The US has refused to clean up chemical weapons left on its military bases in Okinawa from the Vietnam War – over 40 years ago – despite their serious threat to the safety and well-being of the people of the Japanese island. “Decades of Pentagon pollution poison service members, local residents and the future of the island,” writes JON MITCHELL.* Reminiscent of CFB Gagetown in New Brunswick, which it sprayed with Agent Orange during the 1960s, “The Pentagon continues to do everything it can to evade responsibility for the damage its bases cause.” When the US ratified the Chemical Weapons Convention in 1997, it falsely said it had not left chemical weapons in any other nation’s holdings. The fact remains that it is the US that poses the greatest potential and actual danger of unleashing biological, chemical and nuclear weapons against humanity.

Barrels of unidentified U.S. chemicals lie strewn across land in the Northern Training Area, 1972. Courtesy of Robin Poe. (Click to enlarge)

Barrels of unidentified U.S. chemicals lie strewn across land in the Northern Training Area, 1972. Courtesy of Robin Poe. (Click to enlarge)

The Asia-Pacific Journal – In June 2013, construction workers unearthed more than 20 rusty barrels from beneath a soccer pitch in Okinawa City. The land had once been part of Kadena Air Base – the Pentagon’s largest installation in the Pacific region – but was returned to civilian usage in 1987. Tests revealed that the barrels contained two ingredients of military defoliants used in the Vietnam War – the herbicide 2,4,5-T and 2,3,7,8-TCDD dioxin. Levels of the highly toxic TCDD in nearby water measured 280 times safe limits.1

The Pentagon has repeatedly denied the storage of defoliants – including Agent Orange – on Okinawa.2Following the discovery, it distanced itself from the barrels; a spokesperson stated it was investigating if they had been buried after the land’s return in 19873 and a U.S. government-sponsored scientist suggested they may merely have contained kitchen or medical waste.4 However, the conclusions of the Japanese and international scientific community were unequivocal: Not only did the barrels disprove Pentagon denials of the presence of military defoliants in Japan, the polluted land posed a threat to the health of local residents and required immediate remediation.5 Continue reading

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Agent Orange was buried on Okinawa

U.S. chemical warfare continues to plague humanity, even while Washington accuses others of its own crimes. JON MITCHELL* reports on “war surplus” found on a U.S. military base on Okinawa, an island off the coast of Japan, covered up by the Pentagon. U.S. forces sprayed Agent Orange at CFB Gagetown in New Brunswick during the 1960s, also denied and denied and denied by the American and Canadian governments.

Workers unearth barrels at the U.S. Kadena Air Base, January 2014.

Workers unearth barrels at the U.S. Kadena Air Base, the Pentagon’s largest installation in the Pacific region, January 2014.

Asia-Pacific Journal (Aug. 11) – More than six months after dozens of rusty chemical barrels were unearthed from former U.S. military land in Okinawa City, their contents have been identified – and they appear to offer conclusive proof that the toxic Vietnam War defoliant Agent Orange was buried on the island. Continue reading

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‘Liberty visits’ (I): Return of the ‘Dial-a-sailor’ program?

 ‘It is a deplorable situation indeed when the Canadian government and major media make themselves immoral instruments of prostituting Canadian women and girls, repeating outright lies as if they were facts. The message is unmistakable. Canadian women and girls: head for the bars on the weekend to look for well-heeled American sailors.’

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