Entries Tagged as 'Military bases'

Obama’s Military Presence in Niger: US Control over Uranium under the Disguise of Counter-terrorism

Center for Research on Globalization
By Wayne Madsen
March 3, 2013

President Obama’s military incursion into Niger, ostensibly to establish a drone base to counter “Al Qaeda” and other Islamist guerrilla activity in neighboring Mali, has little to do with counter-insurgency and everything to do with establishing U.S. control over Niger’s uranium and other natural resources output and suppressing its native Tuareg population from seeking autonomy with their kin in northern Mali and Algeria.

The new drone base is initially located in the capital of Niamey and will later be moved to a forward operating location expected to be located in Agadez in the heart of Tuareg Niger… The base is being established to counter various Islamist groups – including Ansar Dine, Al Qaeda in the Islamic Maghreb (AQIM), Nigeria-based Boko Haram, and a new group, Movement for Oneness and Jihad in West Africa (MOJWA) – that briefly seized control of northern Mali from Tuaregs, led by the National Movement for the Liberation of Azawad, who took advantage of a coup d’etat in Mali to establish an independent Tuareg state called Azawad.

The U.S. has long been opposed to any attempt by the suppressed Tuareg people to establish their own independent state in the Sahara. American opposition to the Tuaregs dovetails with historical French opposition to Tuareg nationalism. …

Read on: www.globalresearch.ca/obamas-military-presence-in-niger-uranium-control-under-the-disguise-of-counter-terrorism/5325002

Move Afoot To Relocate US Military Base In Japan’s Okinawa Island

RTT News
February 26, 2013

Japan’s Defense Ministry officials on Tuesday held talks with a fishing cooperative of Nago city in the Okinawa prefecture on reclaiming land off the city’s coast for the relocation of a U.S. air base.

The move comes after Prime Minister Shinzo Abe promised President Barack Obama that he would take immediate steps to relocate the U.S. Futenma Marine Corps Air Station in accordance with a bilateral agreement between the two countries, Japanese media reported.

Defense Ministry officials met with representatives of the Nago Fisheries Cooperative Association and handed over papers seeking their approval. The Ministry plans to file for a permit with the prefectural government for the land reclamation project. …

Relocation of the Futenma base is a longstanding demand of the people of Okinawa as it was located in a densely populated area. …

Read in full: www.rttnews.com/2064327/move-afoot-to-relocate-us-military-base-in-japan-s-okinawa-island.aspx?type=gn&utm_source=google&utm_campaign=sitemap

U.S. troops arrive in Niger to set up drone base

The Washington Post
By Craig Whitlock
February 22, 2013

President Obama announced Friday that about 100 U.S. troops have been deployed to the West African country of Niger, where defense officials said they are setting up a drone base to spy on al-Qaeda fighters in the Sahara.

It was the latest step by the Pentagon to increase its intelligence-gathering across Africa in response to what officials see as a rising threat from militant groups.

In a letter to Congress, Obama said about 40 U.S. service members arrived in Niger on Wednesday, bringing the total number of troops based there to “approximately” 100. He said the troops, which are armed for self-protection, would support a French-led military operation in neighboring Mali, where al-Qaeda fighters and other militants have carved out a refuge in a remote territory the size of Texas.

The base in Niger marks the opening of another far-flung U.S. military front against al-Qaeda and its affiliates, adding to drone combat missions in Afghanistan, Yemen and Somalia. The CIA is also conducting drone airstrikes against al-Qaeda targets in Pakistan and Yemen. …

Read on: www.washingtonpost.com/world/national-security/us-troops-arrive-in-niger-to-set-up-drone-base/2013/02/22/2a3348c0-7d01-11e2-9e84-3fbb5d2ef2a9_story.html

Japanese Sue U.S. Government

Prensa Latina News Agency

Okinawa residents accused the U.S. government on Friday of responsibility for health problems arising from the presence of Kadena Air Base.
About 140 citizens brought a lawsuit against the White House in Naha District Court on the grounds that the takeoffs and landings of U.S. planes have led to insomnia and hearing problems.

The plaintiffs are demanding a ban on flights at night and early morning hours and also the payment of $2,600,000 dollars to compensate for damages and losses caused by the practices of the U.S. military.

The residents’ spokesman, Shusei Arakawa, wants to bring the U.S. government to justice in order to recognize the burden on Okinawa imposed since the end of World War II.

The aforementioned prefecture returned to Japanese jurisdiction in 1972 after almost 28 years of being occupied and controlled by Washington, although more than 70 percent of the U.S. bases in Japan are located in that southern territory.

From: www.plenglish.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=760431&Itemid=1

Okinawa residents lodge lawsuit over US flight noise

Xinhua, November 30, 2012

More than 140 residents lived near Kadena air base of U.S. Air Force in Japan’s Okinawa lodged a lawsuit on Friday to try to ban the night and early morning flights at the base and asked for damages payment.

The accusers filed the lawsuit with local court in the city of Okinawa, complaining that they have suffered from aircraft noise which made them difficult to sleep in the night and early morning.

Among other 22,000 plaintiffs of anther lawsuit against such flights, the 144 accusers also asked for a payment of 216 million yen (about 2.56 million U.S. dollars) in damages.

Okinawa Governor Hirokazu Nakaima said Friday that he will continue pushing the plan to relocate the U.S. bases outside his prefecture despite a potential change of government after next month’s general election.

Japan and its U.S. alliance are at odds on the issue of removing U.S. Air Force bases in Okinawa to other places for years. But the two sides still can not reach an agreement.


Dalai Lama laments US bases in Japan

Saudi Gazette
November 13, 2012

The Dalai Lama on Monday lamented the US military presence in Japan at a press conference in Okinawa, where anti-American feeling has flared after alleged crimes by servicemen. “It is not right to have foreign military bases, but such situations unfortunately exist all around the world,” the Tibetan spiritual leader told reporters, according to Jiji Press. Deep-seated anti-Americanism in Okinawa has intensified following the alleged rape of a local woman by two servicemen and the alleged assault on a schoolboy by another. The second incident came days after top brass imposed a nationwide night-time curfew on all US military personnel as they looked to quell rising anger over the first case.


Okinawans demand closure of U.S. bases

The Japan Times
October 18, 2012

Okinawans expressed anger Wednesday over the alleged rape of a local woman by U.S. sailors, an incident that came hot on the heels of another alleged sexual assault involving a marine in the prefecture.

Calls to remove all U.S. bases from Okinawa swelled in response to the rape allegations, with Miyoko Ashimine, head of a local group dealing with gender issues, demanding their immediate closure.

“With Ospreys in the sky and weapons on land, where can local residents walk (in safety)?” asked Ashimine, referring to the U.S. Marine Corps’ recent deployment of tilt-rotor MV-22 Ospreys to the Futenma air station on Okinawa Island despite safety concerns.

The chairman of Okinawa’s prefectural assembly, Masaharu Kina, said local residents have suffered since the end of World War II because of the presence of U.S. bases.

“The United States says it will enforce strict discipline every time there is an incident, but that won’t resolve anything,” Kina said. …

Read on: www.japantimes.co.jp/text/nn20121018a9.html

U.S. urged to build interceptor site

The Vancouver Sun
By Ian MacLeod, Postmedia News
September 13, 2012

System needed to protect the northeast from Iranian threats, experts say

The United States is being urged to establish a major missile interceptor site two hours from Ottawa in upstate New York or in Maine to defend itself and Canada against potential future strikes from Iran.

The proposed site, “would protect the eastern United States and Canada, particularly against Iranian ICBM threats should they emerge,” says a blue-chip panel report delivered to Congress this week.

The U.S. has 30 long-range, ground-based interceptor missiles deployed at Fort Greely in Alaska and Vandenberg Air Force Base in San Luis Obispo, Calif., to repel a limited nuclear or conventional missile strikes from North Korea. Smaller ship-based systems are aboard the U.S. navy’s Pacific and Atlantic fleets.

Now, future concerns about Iran are shifting continental defence concerns eastward.

“A third (ground) site would be added in the northeastern United States, e.g. Fort Drum, New York, or in northern Maine, to protect the eastern United States and Canada against any potential threats that are limited in nature,” says the report by an influential National Research Council panel.

It pinpoints Rome, N.Y., near Syracuse, and Caribou, in northern Maine, near the New Brunswick border, as the other potential sites …

Read on: www.vancouversun.com/news/urged+build+interceptor+site/7235449/story.html

NATO: 202 Afghan bases closed, more to come

U.S. News & World Report
By Deb Riechmann, Associated Press
August 26, 2012

NATO has closed more than 200 bases in Afghanistan and transferred nearly 300 others to local forces, a concrete step toward its 2014 target of handing over security responsibility, NATO officers said Sunday.

All 202 closed facilities were small, ranging from isolated checkpoints to bases of a dozen to 300 soldiers, said Lt. Col. David Olson, a NATO forces spokesman. Most of the closures have been along the country’s main highways, spread across nearly every province, Olson said.

Another 282 bases of the same size have been handed over to the Afghan government, he said.

That means international forces now operate about half as many bases in Afghanistan as in October of 2011, when they ran about 800 bases.

The closures are part of the large-scale drawdown over this year and next as international forces prepare to transfer security tasks to the Afghan government at the end of 2014. …

Read on: www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2012/08/26/nato-202-afghan-bases-closed-more-to-come

Op-Ed: US nuclear carrier group base in Perth? Real possibility in play

Digital Journal
By Paul Wallis
August 1, 2012

The reconfiguration of US military assets is getting very interesting. The proposal for a US carrier group based at HMAS Stirling in Perth is particularly intriguing, because it does relate to a comprehensive reworking of US deployment profiles.
The three basic options for a new US carrier group base are very different. The choices have been narrowed down to three places which have little in common apart from being on the same planet. The strategic issues are different for each, the operational capabilities are different, and the structural contexts are different. Apart from that, it’s a pretty easy problem that US military thinkers are pondering.
Now consider for yourself the ramifications of a naval base in either:

A US carrier group is basically capable of fighting a reasonable size war on its own. It’s also quite capable of knocking out opposing navies and air forces.

The proposed group is indicative of a lot of strike power:

The strike group would include a nuclear powered aircraft carrier, a carrier air wing of up to nine squadrons, one or two guided missile cruisers, two or three guided missile destroyers, one or two nuclear powered submarines and a supply ship.

Read in full: www.digitaljournal.com/article/329805