Masthead graphic based on a painting by Gudrun Thriemer.

Monday, September 01, 2008

"Living with the nightmare of planes and aircraft carriers at US bases in Japan," Chugoku Shinbun, tr Aaron Skabelund for Japan Focus.

[China is the first Asian nation without an American occupation force to host the Olympics, an important fact consistently ignored by the CBC. Seoul and Tokyo are the Asian Olympic host cities still under occupation. That this is not a negligible issue is clear from the following article from Hiroshima.

That the presence of American bases is not a negligible issue elsewhere is clear from the growing No Bases movement here =>. -jlt]

Carrier aircraft began using Atsugi in 1973, when the Midway made nearby Yokosuka its home port. The carrier is the key to the offensive power of the U.S. Seventh Fleet in the Pacific. In order to control the airspace around the carrier and be ready to conduct aerial assaults of enemy territory, the fighter planes engage in constant intense training.

As part of the reorganization of American military forces in the Pacific, the United States military will relocated 59 carrier jets to the Marine Air Corp Station near Iwakuni in central Japan from the Naval Air Facility at Atsugi near Yokohama. For 35 years, Atsugi has fulfilled a leading role in the worldwide strategy of the American superpower. How have the citizens of Atsugi dealt with the din of fighter planes and what is the nature of their relationship with the base? To understand what the future may have in store for Iwakuni, we decided to closely examine the situation in Atsugi.

One evening we stood directly below the flight path taken by the Atsugi carrier jets in the city of Yamato. The tremendous clamor of the jets caused the street lights to dim slightly as they passed overhead. One resident observed that “Today’s noise is quieter than usual.” People passing by hurried along their way as if they were not the least surprised by the roar.

Read the whole article here =>
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