Report from Kyoto
Our work at the Kyoto Space & Peace International Seminar began in earnest yesterday with excellent talks by several speakers. We mostly covered the growing US 'missile defense' (MD) deployments in Japan and South Korea and the implications for increased global instability as the Pentagon surrounds China and Russia with these offensive systems.
Global Network board convener Dave Webb (also chairs the UK Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament) did a great job with a super illustrative PowerPoint presentation showing how MD works and all the places around the world that the US is deploying the system. Yes it is like a metastasizing cancer.
Also an interesting talk from Swako Maeda on the rapidly expanding Japanese military space program that is being plugged into the overall Pentagon 'Full Spectrum Dominance' operation.
Today we board a bus and drive 2 1/2 hours to the Ukawa village along the coast where the US has recently deployed an MD radar aimed at China (although Pentagon press releases maintain it is aimed at North Korea). We will hold a protest outside the base and meet with citizens from the small fishing village (population of 1,600) whose life has been turned upside down by this disruptive military base.
On the personal side our 16-year Bath, Maine neighbor Leann, who came on this trip with us, is doing well. She is making friends with people and yesterday sat through four hours of talks at the seminar. Last night she handed me a birthday card she had made for me that include the following quote:
"At last I think I've discovered the secret: Do whatever your heart leads you to do - but do it?" by Truman X. Jones.
Then Leann wrote next to those words: "You did it! You go, man! You do you!"