I saw the headlines about this, and it gave me a bit of a chill.
Ever since the late Hatoyama Government agreed to abide by the Futenma redeployment terms that the Japanese had already agreed to some years before, I get the sense that the American expat power structure is trying to make nice on all the special deals of the well-connected that have come with the lack of scrutiny Congress has shown to trans-Pacific relations.
It would be a shame if our Ambassador is down in Okinawa, trying to “sell” an agreement that was already made between sovereign nations. I hope that it’s merely a fact-finding tour about the situation in a prefecture that hosts American bases.
It’s not like I’m totallly unsympathetic to the people who have to live near a military base. But by the same token, the base has to go somewhere, and one year has already been wasted on anti-Americanism in place of coming up with acceptable alternatives.
Our ambassador should not be down in Okinawa selling the idea of American bases, if that is what is going on. The sale should be: “We leave and you deal with China. Good luck.”
My other fear is that making the ambassador a base pitchman will mean that other areas of American concern (violation of the social insurance treaty, discrimination based on national origin (really, race) in Japenese companies not addressed promptly, the child snatching by divorced parents) are not addressed.