The US wants to deploy units of Marines armed with missiles along Japan’s Okinawa islands as part of a military buildup aimed at China, the Japanese newspaper Yomiuri Shimbun has reported.
The report said that the US is looking to deploy the Marines by 2026 and that Japan is already aware of the plan. It is expected to be announced on Wednesday after a meeting between Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Secretary of State Antony Blinken, and their Japanese counterparts in Washington.
The Marines Corps is going through an overhaul to better prepare for a future war with China, and a major aspect of the revamping is to make units more mobile. The Marines in these new units will get rid of aircraft and heavy armor in favor of more portable missiles and drones.
Japan hosts about 18,000 Marines, and 70% of US military bases are in the Okinawa prefecture. It’s not clear if the new plan means more US Marines will be deployed to Japan or if a reorganization of Marines that are already there will suffice. Either way, further entrenchment of the US military presence in Okinawa will likely be opposed by locals as there is a robust anti-base movement in the prefecture.
Okinawa Governor Denny Tamaki has called on other Japanese territories to share the burden of hosting US military bases. “Okinawa prefecture sought to become an island of peace and without bases. However, even today, despite the fact that Okinawa is a prefecture with only 0.6% of Japan’s total land, it hosts 70.3% of the total area dedicated to the US military,” Tamaki said last year.
Tamaki has also called for Tokyo to ease tensions with China since any conflict would make Okinawa a target. Hundreds of thousands of civilians were killed in the battle of Okinawa between the US and the Empire of Japan during World War II. But Tamaki is not getting his wish as the government of Prime Minister Fumio Kishida has announced a plan to double military spending and named China “the biggest strategic challenge, unlike anything we have seen before.”
Kishida is set to meet with President Biden this week in talks that will likely be focused on strengthening the US-Japan military alliance to work against China. The top US Marines Corps general in Japan told Financial Times this week that the US military is increasing cooperation with Japan’s armed forces to prepare for a future conflict and is “staging the theater” as it did in Ukraine after 2014.
24 thoughts on “US Wants to Deploy Missile-Armed Marines Along Japan’s Okinawa Islands”
I feel like I am having a flashback…
They call them heroes, but fighting these wars of choice make them little more than pawns for the warmongering elites.
Why does Japan need US help against China now? They didn’t need US help to launch a full scale invasion and multiyear occupation of China in WW II, while attacking the US as a matter of fact. Besides which, have the Chinese said they’re actually going to do something to Japan? Have they made some sort of threat? Is there any actual reason for all the hysteria, or is it just manufacturing consent for more money, weapons, and war?
The Japanese regime wants to remilitarize, and the US regime approves (what could possibly go wrong?). China is just the excuse.
It will be interesting to see how much longer Japan and Germany remain content being non nuclear sidekicks. After turning SE Asia, the Middle East, and now Ukraine into blood soaked messes you would think DC might have second thoughts about poking 1.4 billion people armed with nuclear weapons, but you would be wrong. The American people seem immune to rationality but maybe the Japanese have enough left. They do better on standardized tests, anyway.
It is rather moviesque , planning future wars…
If only wars followed the script …
Got a soft spot for jarheads to this day after sitting at Kadena thinking “you may come for me some day Charles but there are 10,000 Marines between me and you and you will damn sure be beaten and bloody by the time you get to me”.
You need to read Smedley Butler.
“I was just a high class muscle man for Wall Street interests”, War is a Racket.
… USMC, the goon squad for Corporate America.
I would say dont forget the CIA but I think they have a separate, possibly overlapping agenda.
They’re mainly the hit-man, killing in retail (like JFK, n so on) not wholesale; and, collaborators with the other the foulest mafias (like Israel, etc.) to derive mutual benefit.
I don’t think the VC ever heard of Kedena.
True, but this was 82 and 83 era, catch all term for all east Asian forces. Now I would say Mr Lee as a reference to the Chinese. Ivan would roll through outta Cam Rahn Bay with the Minsk but he was a temporary nuisance.
I believe the proper Asian catchall is “gook”. Have the coarseness of your convictions.
More exciting build up. I hope it lasts…
Are you getting a contact high?………………………………………
It’s like the dangling knife effect. Will it fall or not.
Too risky. The island could tip over.
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