Send them to Okinawa! But…

June 21, 2006 at 6:31 am (International community, Iraq, Leftist idiocy, Middle East, Military, The Left, The United States)

Sending any more forces to Okinawa is, frankly, somewhat stupid. We already have a huge problem with the locals there. Although what’s funny is that if The United States announced they will shut down their presence in Okinawa, the Japanese government will have a fit. It’ll be committing seppuku in grief, doing anything to try to get us to stay. Figuratively speaking, of course.

Same with South Korea. They were demanding we leave. Then when we said we’ll reduce our forces, they began accusing us of abandoning them.

Every place where The United States has a military presence resents their presence. And yet they don’t really want us to leave. While keeping in mind the need to keep a military presence in an area, we should not underestimate what the locals are thinking.

People don’t realize this when they talk about how Operation Iraqi Freedom was/is wrong. The Arabs resented our presence in the region. The people resented what they saw as a Western-imposed violation of Iraq’s sovereignty with the no-fly zones (which were imposed, remember, to protect the Shiites and Kurds from Saddam’s genocidal impulses). Arab leaders were uneasy with the presence of American power so close to them. Unlike The United States’ presence in Okinawa, South Korea, Germany, et cetera, their presence in the Middle East was for offensive purposes rather than mainly defensive purposes. Or, rather, for offensive defensive purposes rather than to sit and wait to be attacked.

Opponents to Operation Iraqi Freedom need to answer or ponder these questions if we did not go to war:
1. How much longer would Iraq be divided into three regions, an division that violated Iraq’s sovereignty and was imposed against Iraq’s will?
2. How much longer would Shiites and Kurds have to live in fear of the regime turning its weapons against them?
3. How much longer would The United States have to keep its military in a region in which it is not welcomed?
4. How much longer would The United States have to patrol the no-fly zones and risk military lives in doing so?
5. How much longer would The United States sit while Saddam attempted to obtain weapons of mass destruction?
6. How much longer would The United States sit while Saddam offered material assistance to Palestinian terrorists?
7. How much longer would The United States sit while Saddam diverted funds from France, Germany, Russia, and other states into building palaces and weapons?
8. How much longer would The United States sit while sanctions against Iraq were being violated by The United States’ supposed allies?
9. How much longer would The United States sit while Iraq’s people suffered because of Saddam’s instability, rebellion, and violence?

At least we went in and put an end to the stalemate that had developed. Now, when we leave Iraq, our presence in the region will be less than what it may have been before Operation Iraqi Freedom. In addition, Iraq’s neighbors (particularly Kuwait and Saudi Arabia) would be safer. And Iraq will be more stable (although far from perfect). (Sorry for the slight tangent from the Okinawa issue, but I think it’s germane. I have more where that came from!)

We should not be deluded in thinking we can keep moving our forces away from regions when they become unpopular there, mainly because they are not popular anywhere. We should also not fool ourselves into thinking stalemates can be perpetuated. Every stalemate – including the one between the Koreas – will have to come to an end. It is best we end it on our terms.

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5 Comments

  1. elzbth said,

    Allies frequently utter conflicting complaints and demands. We are still spending billions of dollars annually to supply the European troops in Kosovo with airlift capacity, logistics capabilities, and communication technology and we still hear the same old whines and complaints. If we pulled our expensive equipment, we’d hear even louder whines and complaints.

  2. Wickedpinto said,

    In 96 when the 14 year old okinawan girl was raped and murdered, we gave them a reason though elzbth.

    there are 25K US military on an island of 250K Japanese. Thats an oppressive ratio. It’s less an argument against the US, than it is a fight between the prefecture, and the Japanese mainland rule.

    GUAM, we almost outnumber the native. . . .whats the term, guamanians? or whatever? It’s BAD to move to quam, we OWN midway, and Diego Garcia, but they aren’t strategic, we need to modify our Japanese presence. Not out of “redeployment” out of failure, but out of respect.

    Japan IS an ally, HELL they are ammending their own constitution to allow foreign service, foreign service to support US and Japanese Ideals.

    I Lived there briefly, Japan doesn’t hate the US, they hate the idea of being ACCUSED as being a prefecture of the US.

  3. jammy said,

    this Iraq business is getting funnier by the day! So funny that it ceases to be funny anymore!

  4. elzbth said,

    Wickedpinto, the U.S, has been discussing redeployment with Japan for a while now, and I have no problem at all with decreasing the number of troops in Japan, Europe, or Korea. I think we should do so. However, one of the problems is that Japan wants a substantial American military presence close by and focused on Japanese security issues, but it doesn’t want them any closer than Okinawa. My point about allies remains the same. They tend to want things both ways at the same time.

  5. Wickedpinto said,

    Elzbth, the problem isn’t japan, it’s the prefecture of Okinawa, Japan, though a densely populated island nation has a lot of places they wouldn’t mind hosting US troops, if we re-deploy, it would have to be within the japanese nations, I’m confident many other islands would support an explosive ecconomic benefit that comes with a lot of bored US servicemen on their islands, but only yamato, and maybe honshu can absorb the numbers, thats what I meant.

    What I think is more than a little F’d up, is that the phillipines has been in constant use of “temporary” US millitary support, they revoked their leases of US military bases. I think we should tell the philipines to shit or get off the pot, ally clearly, or don’t. I think that that is one of the dynamics that Okinawa is looking at, how the phillipines get everything without having to deal with anything.

  6. elzbth said,

    We signed a land-lease arrangement with the Phillipines in 1959 that was set to expire in 1991 unless both sides agreed to continue. In 1991 the Phillipine’s Senate voted to end the land lease agreement. That was fine with the U.S. We still have a defense alliance, however. A land-lease agreement and a defense alliance are two separate things.

    And where did you get the idea that the Japanese government wants large American bases in Japan?

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