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Tag Archives: military spending

Okinawans, Americans Say No To Military Spending

On April 17, 2012, Okinawan activists and their American supporters will join dozens of organizations around the world for the second annual Global Day of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS 2.0). Activists in 40 countries and more than 100 cities around the world will participate in the second annual GDAMS. There will be street theater in Dhaka, demonstrations in Istanbul, a parliamentary debate in Yaoundé, protests against military bases in Okinawa, a peace village in Oslo, a high-level seminar at the UN in Geneva, a flash mob in Oakland, Tax Day leafleting in Bethlehem, PA, a “walk of shame” in Washington, DC, and much much more. Check out the GDAMS website for a complete list of actions. http://demilitarize.org/

Delegation to Arrive from Okinawa

Announcing the January 2012 Washington Delegation from Okinawa: “Making Okinawan Voices Heard in America”   Purpose of Visit: To promote awareness of enduring military base problems on Okinawa, Japan, and to propose the closure and consolidation of the 34 military installations on Okinawa as part of Congressional deficit-reduction plans to reduce defense spending by $1 […]

Peace in Asia and the Pacific: Alternatives to Asia-Pacific Militarization Conference – Oct. 21 & 22, 2011, American Univ., Washington D.C.

Organizer Joseph Gerson, of the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC): Please join us and consider having your organization co-sponsor this uniquely important conference. Even as the Pentagon has been pursuing its Long War across the Middle East and Central Asia, the campaign to contain China has been driving U.S. strategic war planning and military spending. Our movements to prevent war and to address the impacts of the militarization of the federal budget are not prepared to the long term designs of the Pentagon, right-wing and the Military-Industrial-Complex to reinforce and deepen U.S. militarism across the Asia-Pacific.

Message from the  International Women’s Network Against Militarism to Peoples Movement for No Naval Base on Jeju! 

Suzuyo Takazato, director of Okinawa Women Act Against Military Violence, made this statement about U.S. military bases following the 1995 gang-rape of a 12-year-old Okinawan girl by two marines and a sailor: “Fifty-three years is long enough. We have really suffered. Prostitution and rape are the military system’s outlets for pent up aggression and methods of maintaining control and discipline – the target being local community women.” It's now been 69 years that Okinawans have suffered from the injustice of seized farms, multiple forms of violence, community degradation, and environmental destruction wrought by U.S. bases. In hope of staving a similar fate for Jeju Islanders, Ms. Takazato joins her colleagues at the International Women’s Network Against Militarism (IWNAM) in this statement supporting Jeju Island residents who are challenging the state seizure and planned destruction of their farmland and a biodiverse coast to make way for a massive naval base to house warships.

John Feffer: Jim Webb’s Parting Shots (on Okinawa & more)

In this June 16, 2011 tribute to Senator Jim Webb, John Feffer reflects on the Webb-Levin-McCain alternative to the Obama administration's plan to build another U.S. military base in Okinawa: In mid-May, he teamed up with Carl Levin (D-MI) and John McCain (R-AZ) to issue a statement offering an alternative to the current U.S. plan to build another military base in Okinawa and expand the existing facilities on Guam. The Obama administration has been so hell-bent on creating another U.S. base on Okinawa, over the objections of the vast majority of the citizens of the Japanese island, that it went so far as to precipitate the resignation of Prime Minister Yukio Hatoyama when he had the temerity to balk at the economic and political costs. At a time when the administration has asked the Pentagon to contribute to overall budget cutting, the price tag for the reorganization of U.S. force structure in the Pacific is both enormous (over $27 billion) and, according to a recent GAO report, consistently underestimated. Webb's alternative – moving capabilities from the aging Futenma Marine air base to the nearby Kadena Air Force base – is not ideal, but it's at least a starting point for discussion. But the Obama administration, which has prided itself on its ability to listen, has closed its ears both to Okinawans and the Webb-Levin-McCain initiative.

Katrina Vanden Heuvel: Around the Globe, US Military Bases Generate Resentment, Not Security

Katrina Vanden Heuvel, publisher and editor of The Nation, a progressive news magazine, spotlights The Network for Okinawa in her June 13, 2011 article discussing the U.S. system of 865 military bases worldwide that costs American taxpayers $102 billion annually (not including the 135 newly constructed bases in Iraq and Afghanistan): The plain truth is that the staggering resources we spend to support an empire of bases isn’t making us more secure. Instead, they fuel resentment and consume resources desperately needed to invest here at home, as well as targeted development aid that could be used more wisely and efficiently by non-military experts.

Okinawans urge Senator Carl Levin to use U.S. taxpayer dollars to create jobs at home, not to build a new base in Okinawa

Senators Carl Levin, Chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, and Jim Webb, chair of the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations East Asian and Pacific Affairs Subcommittee and member of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, are visiting Okinawa today and tomorrow. Okinawans greeted the senators with signs urging them to use U.S. taxpayer money not to build a new military base in Okinawa, but to create jobs at home. The official U.S. unemployment rate is over 8%.

Is another Pacific War inevitable? John Feffer says “No” & brings clarity & hope to the issue of excessive military spending in the Asia-Pacific

Some pundits tell us the U.S. is going to war with a "rising China" in the near future. That's why they want to spend more on missile defense surrounding China, military expansion in South Korea and Guam, and another U.S. military mega-base on Okinawa (although 30 facilities already exist on 20% of the island). But is another Pacific War inevitable? John Feffer says "No" and brings clarity and hope to a discussion on excessive global military spending and how we can stop the march towards more wars in this great National Public Radio (NPR) interview, with good audience Q&A. Feffer, a fellow at the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), the D.C.-based think tank that sponsors the Network for Okinawa, explains how the Global Day of Action on Military Spending came into being and how we can reenvision our common future.

Okinawa Network for Global Day of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS) Statement

The Okinawa Network for Global Day of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS) object to Tokyo's "Sympathy Budget" subsidies to the U.S. military amid an unprecedented crisis caused by earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear disaster. They urge the Japanese and U.S. governments to stop their planned destruction of biodiverse Oura Bay to build a U.S. Marine mega-base and to stop destroying one of the best-preserved areas of Yanbaru Forest to build helipads for jungle training purposes: We urge the US government, as our “Tomodachi" or "Friend”, to decline our sympathy budget, if it truly wishes to help Japan’s recovery and rebuilding. We also urge both Japanese and US governments to stop further militarizing Okinawa: the base construction in Henoko/Oura Bay and the helipad construction in Takae. Please show them your support by posting comments at their website!

Global Day of Action on Military Spending (GDAMS) event: Living Along the Fenceline screening today in San Francisco

The Women for Genuine Security, an organizational member of the Network for Okinawa, is sponsoring a screening of filmmaker Lina Hoshino's Living Along the Fenceline tonight in San Francisco. The groundbreaking 80-minute documentary tells the stories of seven women whose lives have been affected by the US military presence in their backyards. Their individual journeys of strength and courage represent the unheard stories of communities across the globe that live alongside US bases and bear tragic hidden costs to their land, culture, and spirit. They are teachers, organizers, and healers, moved by love and respect for the land, and hope for the next generation. One of the storytellers is Yumi Tomita (pseudonym), an Okinawan woman in her late 30s. She was raped by US soldiers when she was in high school. It has taken her many years to cope with the shame and trauma of this assault. She finally began to speak of her ordeal in 1995, when a 12-year-old Okinawan girl was kidnapped and raped by U.S. Marines.