Okinawa Governor Warns of 'Strong Resistance' to U.S. Missiles


(Bloomberg) -- As the Pentagon hunts for sites to deploy missiles against a rising China, Okinawa's governor is warning the U.S. to steer clear of the southern Japanese prefecture.

Governor Denny Tamaki said in an interview Friday that any U.S. attempt to base intermediate-range ballistic missiles in Okinawa would be firmly opposed by the local people. Tamaki, who was elected last year on a campaign to get the Marines' Futenma air base out of the prefecture, argues the region already shoulders an unfair burden by hosting about half of the 50,000 U.S. military personnel in Japan.

"Intermediate-range ballistic missiles can be used to attack other countries, so deploying them would conflict with the constitution and lead to a further build-up of the U.S. bases," Tamaki, 60, told Bloomberg News. "To have new military facilities would be absolutely unacceptable."

More: Okinawa Governor Calls on World to Help Raise Castle From Ashes

Tamaki's comments underscore the challenges facing the U.S. as it seeks to deploy land-based cruise missiles and intermediate-range ballistic missiles after withdrawing from a treaty with Russia that banned them. The Trump administration scrapped the agreement in part because China, which wasn't bound by the treaty, has a wide variety of similar missiles that can target the U.S. bases and allies in the region.

Many of the most likely sites for such missiles, including treaty allies such as Australia, Japan and South Korea, may be reluctant to accept the weapons out of fear of inflaming domestic opposition. China has also warned that those countries would face retaliation if they agreed to host the missiles.

Xi Military Parade to Showcase China Missiles Spooking the U.S.

Okinawa would be an ideal place for such weapons, since its bases could put all of China in range. But it's also among the places where opposition to America's overseas troop presence is strongest, and local residents have complained for decades about crime, accidents, pollution and noise associated with the U.S. bases

Japan's central government has agreed with the U.S. to move the Futenma base from the center of a crowded city to a more remote location. Tamaki defeated a candidate backed by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to win election as governor and held a referendum in March in which 70% voted against the relocation plan.

Tamaki said any missile deployment would face similar opposition. "Strong resistance should be expected," he said.

--With assistance from Adrian Leung.

To contact the reporters on this story: Isabel Reynolds in Tokyo at;Emi Nobuhiro in Tokyo at

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Brendan Scott at, Jon Herskovitz

For more articles like this, please visit us at

©2019 Bloomberg L.P.


More Related News

Vietnam to Extend Retirement Age by 2 Years for Men, 5 Years for Women
Vietnam to Extend Retirement Age by 2 Years for Men, 5 Years for Women

(Bloomberg) -- Vietnam will gradually extend the retirement age for men by two years and for women by five years over the next decade as part of the government's amendment to its Labor Code.Men can work until 62 by 2028 and women until 60 by 2035 from the current retirement age of 60 for males and 55 for females, the government said on its website.Under the amendments approved by the National Assembly on Wednesday, the retirement age will increase by 3 months annually for men and by 4 months each year for women starting 2021. The changes were made as Vietnam's population is maturing at a faster pace than some of its peers.The nation's elderly citizens are expected to double to 14% of the...

China Committed to Peace Despite Challenges, Vice President Says
China Committed to Peace Despite Challenges, Vice President Says
  • World
  • 2019-11-21 01:56:22Z

(Bloomberg) -- A top deputy to Chinese President Xi Jinping reaffirmed China's commitment to market-based economic reforms, while warning that the international order "was under attack."Vice President Wang Qishan, who's one of China's best known economic reformers, told Bloomberg's New Economy Forum on Thursday that the country would follow through on policy changes despite facing serious challenges at home and aboard. He said the country would continue to let the market play a "decisive role" in the allocation for resources and stick to the path of peaceful development."Between war and peace, the Chinese people firmly choose peace. Humanity cherishes peace," Wang said in his keynote...

Stocks Decline on U.S.-China Tension; Bonds Climb: Markets Wrap
Stocks Decline on U.S.-China Tension; Bonds Climb: Markets Wrap

(Bloomberg) -- Stocks in Europe and Asia fell along with American equity-index futures after the U.S. Senate passed legislation supporting Hong Kong protesters, drawing a rebuke from China and potentially complicating trade talks. Bonds gained.Miners and banks led the slide in the Stoxx Europe 600 index

A Massive Coal Plant That Asked for Trump
A Massive Coal Plant That Asked for Trump's Help Has Gone Dark

(Bloomberg) -- In the end, the unraveling economics of U.S. coal proved too much for even a giant among power generators to handle.At 12:09 p.m. local time on Monday -- after churning out electricity for almost five decades -- the largest coal-fired power plant in the western U.S. permanently closed,

U.S. Increased Sea Patrols to Send Message to China, Defense Secretary Says
U.S. Increased Sea Patrols to Send Message to China, Defense Secretary Says

(Bloomberg) -- The U.S. is conducting more patrols in the South China Sea to send a signal to China that it intends to maintain freedom in the area that's crucial for global trade, Defense Secretary Mark Esper said Tuesday.Esper said at a media briefing in Manila the U.S. "rejects attempts by any nation to use coercion or intimidation to advance international interests at the expense of others."He also urged nations with South China Sea claims to take a public position and assert sovereign rights to get China "on the right path.""The clear signal we're trying to send is not that we're opposing China per se, but we all stand for international law, and that we think China should abide by...

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked with *

Cancel reply


Top News: Economy