Organizing Notes

Bruce Gagnon is coordinator of the Global Network Against Weapons & Nuclear Power in Space. He offers his own reflections on organizing and the state of America's declining empire....

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Location: Brunswick, Maine, United States

I'm back to work for the Global Network. Will continue to help Lisa Savage for US Senate campaign on my free time. Trying to self-isolate as much as possible. Best wishes and good luck to you all.

Monday, August 09, 2010

THE LEGACY OF NAGASAKI

The U.S. has produced a comic book to "celebrate" the relationship between the two nations

As we remember the U.S. atomic bombing of Nagasaki 65 years ago today it is instructive to take a look at what the U.S.-Japan "special relationship" has become.

CNN reports about a cartoon book created by U.S. Forces in Japan: "Entitled Our Alliance; A Lasting Partnership and available for free download from the U.S. Forces Japan website, it casts the politically charged relationship as a metaphor in which a cuter-than-cute little boy named Usa (get it?) visits the home of his equally cuter-than-cute Japanese friend Arai Anzu (say it aloud: 'alliance.')"

When I first went to Japan in 1985 for the Hiroshima-Nagasaki commemoration events the Japanese Prime Minister Nakasone, attending one of the ceremonies, called his country the U.S.'s "unsinkable aircraft carrier" in the Asian-Pacific. Not much has changed since.

As we now see the doubling of U.S. military operations in the region, and the U.S. pressuring Japan to get rid of Article 9 in their constitution that forbids an offensive military, it is evident that the U.S. strategy to surround China relies on Japanese collaboration.

It was recently announced that the U.S. is pushing Japan to export the Aegis destroyer-launched Standard Missile-3 systems (SM-3), which would signal a dramatic change from the country's current ban on selling arms and weapons. The SM-3 system is a key component in the Pentagon's "missile defense" program that is really intended to take out Chinese nuclear retaliatory capability following a U.S. first-strike attack - something that is annually war gamed at the U.S. Space Command.

The U.S. has colonized Japan (and South Korea) since the dropping of the atomic bombs near the end of WW II. It uses both countries as jumping off bases in order to project power in the region.

In an editorial on the Chinese web site called Global Times they talk openly about the need for China to respond to growing U.S. efforts in the region to control China's growth. They conclude, "Taking on China as a competitor may serve as an incentive to the US. If the US takes China as an enemy, the result would be disastrous."

In the meantime the Obama administration is stepping up war games in the Yellow Sea just off China's coast. A Pentagon spokesman announced on August 6 that the USS George Washington aircraft carrier will participate in a joint U.S.-South Korean military exercise in the Yellow Sea "in the near future."

The influential China Daily connected the expansion of a U.S.-led equivalent of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) to a hostile policy toward China, stating, "the U.S. has seemingly become less restrained in its move to push forward an Asian version of the NATO with its allies in the region."

The U.S. supposedly dropped atomic bombs on Hiroshima and Nagasaki in order to defeat an out-of-control fascist imperial power. But looking back on the 65 years since those immoral atomic bombings it has become crystal clear that the U.S. has always planned to become the imperial power in the Asian-Pacific. Japan, South Korea, Guam, Australia and some number of other nations in the region seemed resigned to their fate as junior partners in this deadly game of U.S. military expansion.

The peace movements in those countries, just like those of us in the U.S., have their hands full trying to stop the maddening arms race that results from these current imperial ambitions. Let the memory of Hiroshima and Nagasaki motivate us to strongly oppose these destabilizing moves by our countries, knowing that full scale war in the region is the worst thing that could happen.

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