“An Island In Peril”
Okinawa and its people have lived in peace with their environment until the military base was placed on their beautiful island. The Okinawan people are looking for a way to maintain the bliss and beauty of their island forever, with the military base destroying it. For more information, click here.
Okinawa, is in the Ryuku Islands is the southern most part of Japan. It is close to Taiwan and China. Locals and visitors enjoy the beauty of the island, ocean, coral reefs, wild fish and dugong.
|Mr. AL CORNELLA
Commission on Review of Overseas Military Facility Structure of the United StatesDear Mr.Chairman:Enclosed please find the Statement of Yoichi Iha, Mayor, the City of Ginowan, Okinawa, Japan submitted to the Commission on Review of Overseas Military Facility Structure of the United States.We deeply appreciate your understanding and support.
|Statement of demand for reduction of US Marine Corps on Okinawa and closure of USMC Futenma Air Station
I would like to express my heartiest gratitude to Mr. Chairman and Members of the Commission on Review of Overseas Military Facility Structure of the United States, for giving me this opportunity to submit my statement regarding the United States Marine Corps Futenma Air Station located in Ginowan City (I call it Futenma Air Station hereinafter) and U.S. Marine Corps on Okinawa.
Sixty years will have passed next year since U.S. Forces began to construct its military bases here during the U.S. Forces occupation of Okinawa in World WarⅡ. However, no municipality in Okinawa has testified or submitted this kind of statement to a commission or committee under U.S. Congress for such long period of time. As the mayor of one of the municipalities which have been forced to shoulder the burden arising from the U.S. Forces for as much as sixty years, I submit this statement, being well assured that the time to let the people of Okinawa liberated from this excessive burden has come, in way of closing or reducing the U.S. bases, which we have long desired. I also strongly request that the Commission have an opportunity to inspect the U.S. bases in Okinawa and discuss with local representatives including me regarding various problems associated with the U.S. military here.
Dr. Ota, former governor and senator, interviewed by Dr. Sandra Rose Michael.
Masahide Ota, former governor of Okinawa, is a professor emeritus at the University of the Ryukyus, Okinawa. At present, he is a director of Ota Peace Research Institute at Naha. He was born in Okinawa in 1925. While a student of the Okinawa, he was drafted into the Japanese Imperial Army as a member of the ‘Blood and Iron Student corps’ Tekketsu Kinnoutai organized just before the invasion of Okinawa by U.S. force on April1, 1945.
After the war, he went to Tokyo to attend Waseda University and graduated from the school in 1954. He then went to the United States as a scholar-ship student for advanced studies, receiving an MA degree in journalism from Syracuse University in New York in1956. He has taught at the East-West Center, University of Hawaii, as a re-search associate (1973), and at Arizona State University as a Fulbright visiting scholar (1978).
He writes many articles and more than eighty books about Okinawa, including The Battle of Okinawa, Essays on Okinawa Problems, THE OKINAWAN MIND (Okinawa no Kokoro), WHO ARE THE OKINAWAN? (Okinawajtn towa Nanika), THE POLITICAL STRUC-TURE OF MODERN OKINAWA (Okinawa no Seiji Kozo), THE CONCIOUSENESSOF THE OKINAWAN PEOPLE (Okinawa no Minshu Ishiki), and others.
His awards include Okinawa Times Cultural Award, University of Ryukyus Awards, Higashionna Kanjun Award, and Ryukyus Shimpo Best Award.
When he was a governor of Okinawa he made:
Okinawa Prefecture’s Peace and Anti-Nuclear Weapons Declaration
War indiscriminately destroys all life, livelihood, culture, history, nature.
The last ground battle of the Pacific War was fought here on this land, Okinawan Towns and villages burned.
Two hundred thousand lives were decimated. An ancient cultural heritage was lost and the land was scarred.
These wounds have not yet healed War, this tragedy as our foundation. We Plead to the people of the world to abandon all nuclear weapons to stop every war; to replace weapons with dialogue, and through love and trust make Earth a peaceful, green planet.
We, the people of Okinawa Under the slogan “Brothers at First Meeting” wish to make this land a bridge between nations In a sincere desire for everlasting world peace we call out this declaration for a peaceful, nuclear-free Okinawa Prefecture.
June 23, 1995 Okinawa Prefecture