23.04.24 16:47:05
Vol. 38-1 (April 2023) Essential Factors in the Stabilization of US Military Base Politics in Okinawa: An Application of Q Methodology (Ryota Hiyane, Long Piao)


As US-China competition intensifies in East Asia, the USA and Japan are strengthening military bases and training in and around Okinawa. As a result, the Okinawan people worry that Okinawa might again become a battlefield as in World War II. Opposition to military bases is increasing, as is discussion of the dispute over US military bases in host countries. Earlier research suggests that the stability of base politics in Okinawa was achieved because of Japanese compensation politics and Okinawa's unique history and environment. However, some factors and methodological aspects of the issue have been neglected, which this study explores. This study applies the Q methodology in an examination of the survey we conducted with scholars studying the US military base in Okinawa and local government officials to identify the multiple essential factors of stabilizing US base politics in Okinawa: real politics for financial compensation, historical traces and real difficulties, Tokyo's strategic games with multilevel local governments, and Asia-Pacific security and Okinawa's responsibility. Our findings offer new theoretical insights into the studies on base politics.

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