Book Authored (ISBN-10: 0824821599)

Book Authored (ISBN-10: 0824821599)
Sovereign Rights and Territorial Space in Sino-Japanese Relations: Irredentism and the Diaoyu/Senkaku Islands (ISBN-10: 0824824938)

Friday, December 31, 2010

Futenma Airbase-I/Laodicean Politics in Japan-VIII

Since Hatoyama took power in Japan, the deadlock over the transfer of a key American military airfield between Tokyo and Washington has put the 50th anniversary of the Japan-U.S. security treaty into danger. One of the current coalitions with the DPJ, the Social Democratic Party (SDP), opposes the relocation of U.S. Marine Corps Air Station Futenma within Okinawa. Some members of DPJ also agree with the position of SDP. For instance, Ozawa Ichiro, DPJ Secretary General, expressed the view that the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet, based on Yokosuka, Kanagawa Prefecture, would be enough for the American presence in the Far East in the role of the American military in Japan.

Small islets in Okinawa Prefecture have been considered as relocation sites for the American base. Shimoji islet, a small island about 289 km southwest of Naha, has a 3,000-meter runway which is used for the civilian pilot training. Alternatively, Ie islet is just off the west coast of the main island and has a marine airstrip used as a training facility. Both islets have been re-considered by the Hatoyama Administration.

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