voiceofokinawa comments

Posted in: Japan renews claim on South Korea-held island See in context

The islands claimed by both Japan and Korea are called "Tokuto" in Korean. The place name is naturally analyzed as toku+to. Toku sounds like take of "Takeshima" in Japanese. This suggests that ancient people, when there was no distinction between Japanese and Korean, called the island by the same name.

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Posted in: New Zealand volunteers refloat 28 whales in rescue effort See in context

Too many cases of mass stranding of whales. You cannot simply explain it with natural causes like parasites. Submarine sonars always come into my mind.

145 pilot whales die in mass stranding on New Zealand beach

RikiWeb: Nov. 26, 2018

Nearly 500 pilot whales stranded in Australia; 380 dead

RikiWeb: Sep. 23, 2020

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Posted in: Japan renews claim on South Korea-held island See in context

ICJ may be a good venue in which to judge whose claim is correct. The catch is the ICJ won‘t take up a lawsuit unless two parties agree to participate in court proceeding. So what shall be done to address this problem?

How about an NGO forum to discuss the issue? I have proposed that with the Senkaku/Diaoyudao issue, too.

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Posted in: Japan renews claim on South Korea-held island See in context

Both countries claim the island has been their own historically and under international law. How could one understand this?

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Posted in: NASA rover lands on Mars to look for signs of ancient life See in context

Happy landing, Perseverance. Congratulations to NASA's controlling team.

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Posted in: LDP wants more women at meetings, but only if they don't talk: Nikai See in context

Yanagisawa had to resign from the government post because of the faux pas.

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Posted in: LDP wants more women at meetings, but only if they don't talk: Nikai See in context

In 2007, Shin Yanagisawa, Labor and Welfare Minister under the Abe administration said women were child bearing machines by nature and so let them make efforts to eliminate Japan's declining population. 

The LDP's inner circle politicians thus seem to be all part of the same gang.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. agree on cost of hosting American forces in FY2021 See in context

rgcivilian1: Feb. 18 08:25 am JST,

It is agreed in SOFA that the U.S. will bear all costs incident to the maintenance of U.S. bases in Japan. So why should Japan shoulder 74% of the maintenance costs of U.S. bases in Japan?

But you seem to suggest U.S. forces are here as the result of "Pearl Harbor". Japan lost the war whereby the U.S. is entitled to maintain bases here for free and further has right to demand Japan pay more base maintenance costs

So in your opinion all these bilateral agreements, the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty and its accompanying document, the SOFA, are shams, nothing but a facade to camouflage the hard reality that the U.S. still militarily occupies Japan as it did from 1945 to 1952 or in the case of Okinawa from 1945 to 1972.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. agree on cost of hosting American forces in FY2021 See in context

How many U.S. citizens are employed by Toyota, Nissan and Sony that are operating in the U.S.? How much are they contributing to U.S. economy?

In a similar vein and logic to "sympathy budget" or "the host-nation support", these companies should ask the U.S. government to share 74% of their operating costs. Reasonable?

Japan should follow in the footsteps of the 'Philippines and ask the U.S. to pay base usage fees.

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Posted in: LDP wants more women at meetings, but only if they don't talk: Nikai See in context

LDP wants more women at meetings, but only if they don't talk: Nikai

What's the difference between him and Mori, who said the fewer were women, the better a meeting would be.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Furthermore, despite that the U.S. has no innate right to demand for a replacement of Futenma be built in Henoko, Nago City, Okinawa, they do so and even urge Tokyo to forge ahead with the construction of it. USMC Air Station Futenma sits mostly on private land which was confiscated while area residents were herded in camps like POWs. That was a blatant violation of international law and humanity. In other words, the air station is an illegal property and the Marines are occupying the land like squatters, whereby the U.S. has no right at all to demand for a replacement be built in exchange for its return. Futenma must be closed and the land returned immediately, unconditionally.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Despite this provision, the U.S. is demanding Japan to shoulder a huge amount of base maintenance costs as if no such provision did exist. Also, despite Article 6 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, the U.S. has large contingents of Marines deployed to Okinawa, occupying so much prime land. Mind you, the U.S. Marine Corps is an independent service, never subsidiary to the Navy, another independent service, and Article 6 says only the Army, Air Force and Navy can be stationed in Japan. There's no mention of the Marines.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Despite this provision, the U.S. is demanding Japan to shoulder huge base maintenance costs as if no such provision did exist. Also, despite Article 6 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, the U.S. has large contingents of Marines deployed to Okinawa, occupying so much prime land. Mind you, the U.S. Marine Corps is an independent service, never subsidiary to the Navy, another independent service.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Article 24 of the Status of Forces Agreement between Japan and the U.S., an accompanying document to the Security Treaty, clearly states that "the United States will bear ... all expenditures incident to the maintenance of the United States armed forces in Japan."

Despite this provision, the U.S. is demanding Japan to shoulder huge base maintenance costs as if no such provision didn't exist. Also, despite Article 6 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty, the U.S. has large contingents of Marines deployed to Okinawa, occupying so much prime land. Mind you, the U.S. Marine Corps is an independent service, never subsidiary to the Navy, another independent service.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Capt USA,

You want to say that since Japan is a sovereign nation, it can do whatever it wants, right? Article 10 of the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty states that "after the Treaty has been in force for ten years, either Party may give notice to the other Party of its intention to terminate the Treaty, in which case the Treaty shall terminate one year after such notice has been given. " The current security treaty was signed in 1960, but did Japan give notice to the U.S. its intention to terminate the treaty after 10 years, i.e. in 1970?  Not at all.

The treaty is like an instrument of surrender, dictating Japan must provide bases and areas with U.S. forces for free, in return of which the U.S. will protect the security of Japan and its vicinity, the Far East. In other words, these bases and areas are for Japan's security, but in reality, for the U.S., they are instruments to implement its global war strategy.    

Japan didn't give notice to the U.S. its intention to terminate the security treaty in 1970. Why? Because the powers-that-be erroneously believed, and still does, that the U.S. was following the terms of the treaty faithfully, but note that they never fail to act not to offend the U.S., a boss since the end of the Second World War. They turn a blind eye from any treaty violation of the U.S.

In other words, Japan is not a sovereign nation as you say.  Japan is a small vassal of the great United States of America.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Desert Tortoise,

Let me reiterate. USMC Air Station Futenma could be closed and returned immediately, unconditionally, because there's been a strong local demand for its early return and a strong opposition to the construction of its replacement -- and also because its strategic weight has been lost.

Note that the most active elements of the Okinawa-deployed Marines, 8,000 to 9,000 of them, will relocate to Guam when the construction of infrastructure is completed there. It's also been bilaterally agreed that primary responsibility to defend Japan rests with JSDF and not with USFJ. The Marines will come to help JSDF only when needs be.

Under such circumstances, tell me why a new training base for the Marines is needed. It's recently turned out that the new base in Henoko has been agreed between the tops of JSDF and USMC, blatantly ignoring the civilian control of the military, to jointly use it for training. I urge you to explain a strategic reason why Futenma's replacement must be built in Henoko by all means.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

The base could be closed and returned immediately, unconditionally, because there's been a strong local demand for its early return and a strong opposition to the construction of its replacement -- and also because the strategic meaning of constructing Futenma's replacement has been lost now.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Will the U.S. forces let go of their war-won perquisite and prerogative in Japan so easily as you think? I doubt it. Demanding obstinately for a replacement be built in exchange for the return of USMC Air Station Futenma proves this point more than enough.

The base could be closed and returned immediately, unconditionally, because there‘s been a strong local demand for its early return and a strong opposition to the construction of its replacement.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Capt USA,

Japan can ask the US forces to leave at any time it wishes, and leave they will. Other countries have done so (France, the Philippines, et al).

Will they really leave? They left the Philippines because of a severe damage to base facilities from the eruption of a volcano and also because Manila asked to increase base usage fees -- a very natural demand. In Japan, it's absurdly the other way around. Japan pays for the U.S. forces’ use of bases and facilities.

France wasn’t a defeated country in WW II, so that there must have been no occupation forces and hence no permanent U.S. bases planted there

Will the U.S. forces let go such perquisites so easily as you think? I doubt it. Demanding for a replacement in exchange for the return of USMC Air Station Futenma proves this strongly.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

vanityofvanities (Feb. 11 07:26 am JST):

Japan should stop using the word "omoi yari yosan" (sympathy budget) for the cost sharing budget. The word is insulting to U.S. Forces in Japan.

Pressed to answer a question during a Dietary session on what legal basis Japan must shoulder the maintenance costs of U.S. bases (cf. my post above), then Chief Cabinet Secretary Shin Kanemaru answered, "We must pay it out of sympathy.” Hence, the whole budget for supporting U.S. bases in Japan has come to be known as a "sympathy budget" in Japan. 

Washington doesn't like it, either, of course, so they created a more euphemistic expression: "host-nation support". Tokyo has been trying to propagate the new un-Japanese translation of it but their effort seems to have failed.

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Posted in: Japan, U.S. broadly agree on Tokyo's costs to host U.S. troops See in context

Article 24 of the Status of Forces Agreement between Japan and the U.S. clearly states that "the United States will bear ... all expenditures incident to the maintenance of the United States armed forces in Japan."

So on what legal basis must Japanese taxpayers shoulder the maintenance costs of U.S. bases in Japan? Absurdity never fails to dictate Japan-U.S. relations, as always.

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Posted in: China justifies coast guard's entry into Japan's territorial waters See in context

Hard to understand what the U.S. government said in 1972 when Okinawa was returned to Japan was that, in spite of the fact that it had occupied the Senkaku Islands as part of the Ryukyus and used Kubajima (黄尾嶼)in the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos as a training range for aerial bombing, which remains technically so even today (Note: Ishigaki City is receiving a U.S. base-hosting subsidy from the central government), it said the U.S. had nothing to do with the territorial dispute.

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Posted in: Chinese vessels enter Japan's waters near Senkakus for 2nd straight day See in context

Okinawan view on Senkakus/Diaoyudaos issue

Some say that the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos were ceded to Japan by China’s Qing dynasty in the Treaty of Shimonoski as a result of the First Sino-Japanese War. They then argue that since Japan accepted the terms of unconditional surrender stipulated in the Cairo Declaration, it should observe these terms and fulfil its obligation.

Japan was automatically stripped of Manchuria, Taiwan, Korea, the Pescadores and other islands in the South China Sea and the Pacific. The Ryukyu Islands, including the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos, were separated from Japan and put under US trusteeship.

Why weren't the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos returned to China when Taiwan was restored? Apparently, they were not considered spoils of war Japan took by force.

The international community took the post-World War II regime for granted. Even the CCP that had assumed power in Beijing in 1949 kept acknowledging the “status quo” until 1971.

In the Jan. 8, 1953, edition of the People’s Daily, an article described the island chain stretching between Kyushu and Taiwan and called an island group in question “the Senkaku Islands.”

An article was discovered among Chinese government archives in December 2012 and was reported to describe the Senkakus as part of the Ryukyu Islands, which were a geo-political entity at the time.

The Treaty of Taipei signed on April 28, 1952, stipulates that Japan renounced all rights to Taiwan, Penghu, the Spratly Islands (Nansha Islands, 南沙群島) and the Paracel Islands (Xisha Islands, 西沙群島), over which Japan no longer had any jurisdiction, but it left out the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos.

These documents and historical evidence seem to argue against China's current claim that the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos have been China's sovereign territory since ancient times.

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Posted in: China justifies coast guard's entry into Japan's territorial waters See in context

Okinawan view on Senkakus/Diaoyudaos issue

Some say that the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos were ceded to Japan by China’s Qing dynasty in the Treaty of Shimonoski as a result of the First Sino-Japanese War. They then argue that since Japan accepted in 1945 the terms of unconditional surrender stipulated in the Cairo Declaration after World War II, it should observe these terms and fulfil its obligation.

Japan automatically relinquished claims to Manchuria, Taiwan, Korea, the Pescadores and other islands in the South China Sea and the Pacific. The Ryukyu Islands, including the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos, were stripped from Japan and put under a US trusteeship.

Why weren't the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos returned to China when Taiwan was restored? Apparently, they were not considered spoils of war Japan took by force.

The international community took the post-World War II regime for granted. Even the People’s Republic of China that had assumed power in Beijing in 1949, kept acknowledging the “status quo” until 1971.

In the Jan. 8, 1953, edition of the People’s Daily, an article describeed the island chain stretching between Kyushu and Taiwan — the Ryukyus — and called an island group in question “the Senkaku Islands.”

The article was discovered among Chinese government archives in December 2012 and is reported to describe the Senkakus as part of the Ryukyu Islands, which were a geo-political entity at the time.

The Treaty of Taipei signed on April 28, 1952, stipulates that Japan renounced all rights to Taiwan, Penghu, the Spratly Islands (Nansha Islands, 南沙群島) and the Paracel Islands (Xisha Islands, 西沙群島), over which Japan no longer had any jurisdiction, but it left out the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos.

These documents and historical evidence seem to argue against China's current claim that the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos have been China's sovereign territory since ancient times.

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Posted in: China justifies coast guard's entry into Japan's territorial waters See in context

Nobody will dispute Hainan Island in southern China is China's sovereign territory. So if its sovereignty is threatened or impinged upon by a foreign country, China has right to take all measures "to safeguard" its sovereign territory.

The catch is whether or not that posture of China equally applies to the Senkaku/Diayudao issue. To do so, China must first prove their claim to these islands is factually correct and just. China’s justification of its coast guard ship’s activities in the Senkaku waters is completely wrong and unjustified.  I discussed this point in posts on another thread (cf. “Chinese vessels enter Japan's waters near Senkakus for 2nd straight day” run on RikiWeb :Feb. 7).

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Posted in: Chinese vessels enter Japan's waters near Senkakus for 2nd straight day See in context

Based on the above argument, I don't want to claim the Senkaku Islands belong to Okinawa and hence Japan. But I can definitely say China's claim of sovereignty over these barren islands is groundless and their coast guard ships' activities in the Senkaku waters are against justice, common sense and international law.

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Posted in: Chinese vessels enter Japan's waters near Senkakus for 2nd straight day See in context

Okinawa, or the Ryukyu Islands including the Amami Islands, was separated from Japan and put under direct U.S. administration together with the Senkakus and the Daito Islands until 1972.

Considered they were not part of Japan proper, thereby being put under the direct U.S. administration, were also the Tokara island group located south of Kagoshima Prefecture, Kyushu. They were returned to Japan in 1952. 

The Amami Islands were returned one year later, in 1953. The Bonin Islands were returned in 1968. Okinawa was returned in 1972 albeit U.S. bases remaining firm and intact. On paper, the U.S. still retains right to use Kubajima (黄尾嶼) in the Senkakus as an aerial target and range.

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Posted in: Chinese vessels enter Japan's waters near Senkakus for 2nd straight day See in context

Samit Basu,

(1)Any evidence the Diaoyu Islands were part of Taiwan for 500 years? When did Taiwan become a Han Chinese dominion? If you are talking about stone-age people migrating all the way from Micronesia to Taiwan, to the Ryukyu Archipelago and finally to Japan proper, that's completely off the topic here.

 (2) True, there's the strong "Kuroshio" current in the Senkaku waters flowing from south to north, making it very difficult for small sailboats to navigate in the direction of south. But the Senkaku waters were part of the Fuchuan-Ryukyu sea lane for hundreds of years on which, history tells, Ryukyuan navigators and traders navigated more than 200 times to and from the Chinese mainland. Apparently, they made better use of seasonal winds when they navigated.

(3) Japan took possession of Taiwan in 1895 as the result of the Sino-Japanese War whereas the no-man's land Senkakus were amalgamated into Japan in 1896 by due process in consonant with international law.

(4) Yes, Japan accepted unconditional surrender in 1945 and all the territories it took by force in the past were automatically returned to their legitimate owners. Okinawa or the Ryukyu Islands was separated from Japan and put under direct U.S. administration together with the Senkakus.

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Posted in: Chinese vessels enter Japan's waters near Senkakus for 2nd straight day See in context

China claims the Senkaku Islands, which they call the Diaoyudaos, have been an integral part of China since ancient times. If so, then China has every right to patrol the waters there, threatening trespassing Japanese fishing boats off the area. Probably, their claim to the islands is based on Chen Kan (1489-1538)'s historic document called "Shi Ryukyu Roku" (Chinese Royal Emissary to Ryukyu's Record). In the document, Chen Kan calls the largest island in the island chain "Diaoyudao (fishing island)".  

Was Chen Kan really the first discoverer in history of the deserted islands and so named them as such?

Note, however, that Ishigaki islanders had called it "Iigun Jima" (fish-spear island) and Ryukyu navigators and traders called it "Yukun (or Yokon)". Yukun can be analyzed as iyu+kun, where the first element iyu means "fish" and the second element kun is an affix usually attached to a place name.

There were a number of Ryukyu navigators and pilots aboard the same tributary ship as Chen Kan was on board. So Chen Kan must have learned a lot from Ryukyu navigators about the waterway. It's certain that he translated names of these islands from the Ryukyuan vernacular into Chinese.

If this is so, then China can't claim their forefathers discovered the Senkakus first whereby the Senkakus/Diaoyudaos are China's sovereign territory historically and so they have every right to patrol the waters.

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Posted in: Japan proposes tentative 1-year deal on cost-sharing for U.S. troops See in context

You were one of the first visitors to Diego Garcia when the U.S. base was under construction? What's that to do with our discussion on this thread? Good for you. But, probably, you didn't know what miserable fate the Diego Garcia islanders had to meet at the time.

Anyway. All the bases that you say were closed in the 1990's were on the U.S. mainland. They were closed because they were like stomach flab. They were closed to get rid of the stomach flab of the U.S. military at the time.

U.S. Marines Air Station Futenma will be closed and returned, thank God, but only if its more fortified replacement with new functions is built in Henoko, Nago City, Okinawa. That's not return in the true sense of the word nor the reduction of forces.

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