Okinawa: 65 Years of Occupation
June 23, 2010 is the 65th Anniversary of end of the Battle of Okinawa (what the Japan central government calls it), L-Day (what the US military called it), or the "rain of iron" (what the Okinawans experienced). By the end of the battle almost a quarter-million people had died ( 14,009 Americans) ( 94,000 Okinawans, about a quarter of the population).
To this day about 18 percent of Okinawa Island is still occupied by US forces.
The Japanese central government is satisfied with the continued occupation of Okinawa Island, but the local govenment is demanding an end to the occupation. There is no question that the Okinawans have the will to end the occupation, but the question is whether the central government has the legal and political footing to force the issue against the will of the people.