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Tag Archives: U.S. military accidents & crimes

Busboys and Poets Event Featuring Delegation from Okinawa

*Location*: Langston Room @ Busboys and Poets, 14th & V st  N.W. Washington D.C. *Date*: January 23, 2011 *Time*: 6:30 pm – 8:30 pm http://www.busboysandpoets.com/events.php *Speaker*: The delegation from Okinawa including Ms. Keiko Itokazu (Japanese Diet member) and Mr. Hiroshi Ashitomi (Sit-in protester for nine years at the U.S. construction site in Okinawa) etc.. *Moderator*: […]

16 Years after the Abduction-Beating-Rape of a 12-year-old Okinawan Girl by 2 U.S. Marines & a Sailor “just for fun”

On September 4, 1995, 2 U.S. marines and a sailor kidnapped, duct-taped, beat, and <a href='raped a 12-year-old Okinawan girl "just for fun." On September 29, 1995, the three U.S. servicemen were indicted and handed over to Japanese custody. The rape precipitated a temporary crisis in the US-Japan Security Alliance and catalyzed participatory democracy in Okinawa, spurring previously politically inactive people, especially housewives and elders, to challenge U.S. military presence on their small island. Local activism led by the Okinawa Women Act Against Military Violence resulted in the historic Oct. 22, 1995 mass demonstration against U.S. bases in Okinawa. In November of the same year, Adm. Richard C. Macke, a four-star admiral and 35-year Navy veteran who was commander of U.S. forces in the Pacific, resigned after making this comment at a press conference: "I think it was absolutely stupid, I've said several times. For the price they paid to rent the car, they could have had a girl." However both sexual assaults and prostitution are methods of subjugation, according to Suzuyo Takazato, director of Okinawa Women Act Against Military Violence, who stated in 1995: "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.” Despite the admiral's resignation and expressions of remorse by the White House, rapes of Okinawan women by U.S. troops have continued: In 2001, an Air Force sergeant was arrested for publicly raping a 20-year-old Okinawan woman on the hood of a car. In 2003, military police handed over to Okinawan police a marine who broke a 19-year-old woman's nose and raped her. In 2005, an Air Force sergeant molested a 10-year-old Okinawan girl on her way to Sunday school. He claimed to be innocent, but police found a photo of the girl's naked body on his cell phone. These are just a few of the hundreds of reported sexual assaults by U.S. soldiers in Okinawa. Most military sexual assaults (and other crimes) go unreported. This 1995 report from L.A. Times staff writer Teresa Watanabe graphically reminds us of the sexual violence and emotional trauma that U.S. bases have brought to Okinawa for almost seven decades.

The Aug. 13, 2004 U.S. Marine Helicopter Crash at Okinawa International University

Today is the 7th anniversary of a U.S. Marine heavy assault transport helicopter crash into the Okinawa International University administration building. Despite the swift response by Okinawan police and local medical rescue to the injured troops on civilian territory, the Marines who arrived later cordoned off the university crash site and refused admittance to Okinawan authorities, raising serious sovereignty issues. Former Prime Minister Koizumi refused to meet with Ginowan Mayor Yoichi Iha Yoichi and Okinawan Governor Keiichi Inamine when they traveled to Tokyo to discuss the crash. After the crash, Ginowan City produced a video report of the event for worldwide dissemination; The Asia-Pacific Journal published a translation of a report by Yoshio Sanechika, first published at Shukan Kinyobi, a leading Japanese weekly news magazine; and faculty at Okinawa International University organized a comprehensive website, No Fly Zone to provide Okinawan perspectives on the crash.

Okinawa Prefecture art exhibition memorializing victims of the June 30, 1959 U.S. military jet crash into Miyamori Elementary School

This week, Okinawa Prefecture Office in Naha City is exhibiting memorial art created by surviving teachers and parents who lost children in the June 30 1959 U.S. military jet crash into the Miyamori Elementary School. A US Air Force F-100 Super Sabre on a training flight from Kadena Air Base crashed into Miyamori Elementary School and the surrounding neighborhood. Eleven children and six adults in the neighborhood were killed. 210 other people, including 156 school children, were injured. The pilot ejected, unhurt.

Ryukyu Shimpo: “Open Letter to Mr. Carl Levin”

In an open letter to Senators Carl Levin and Jim Webb, the Ryukyu Shimpo asks them "to show the true worth of American democracy" and "to respect the will of the people of Okinawa and informs them: "April 28 is the date when the United States and Japan concluded both the San Francisco Peace Treaty and the Japan-U.S. Security Treaty in 1952. With this, Allied Occupation forces withdrew from Japan and Japan attained independence. The San Francisco Peace Treaty determined that Okinawa and Amami Oshima would be separated from the mainland islands of Japan and put under the control of the U.S. military."