Friday, August 12, 2011

U.S. bases in Japan trained personnel in waging nuclear war - 12th Aug 2011

The operations of United States military bases in Japan that trained personnel in waging nuclear war will be revealed by a television documentary set to air on Aug. 13.

Tatsuo Sekiguchi, 61, who covered atomic bombs and nuclear issues for many years as a reporter with Nagasaki Broadcasting Co. (NBC), produced the feature before his retirement in March this year. It will be aired on a Tokyo Broadcasting System Television (TBS) program titled "Hodo Tokushu," starting at 5:30 p.m. on Aug. 13.

According to Sekiguchi, Japan used to host a U.S. Army school specializing in nuclear, biological and chemical weapons that had been set up at Camp Gifu in 1951 -- a year after the outbreak of the Korean War -- to teach basic knowledge about nuclear weapons and how to deal with them. Since the base was returned to Japan in 1958 and was converted into the Japan Air Self-Defense Force's Gifu base, the school's existence had long been unknown.

The TV program uncovers the realities of U.S. nuclear training in Gifu and across Japan through testimonies from former U.S. servicemen, as well as documents discovered by a researcher at Nagasaki University.

Among the witnesses who appear in the program is a former U.S. soldier who was exposed to radiation during a secret nuclear weapons drill at a base in Okinawa Prefecture during the Vietnam War. The man, who was exposed to 79 millisieverts of radiation, suffers from respiratory and cardiac disorders and must have an oxygen tank with him at all times.

The U.S. conducted training in Japan in how to drop nuclear bombs, maintain weapons and load munitions to prepare for nuclear attacks in accordance with ever-changing global affairs. Such training continued even into the 1990s, according to the TV program, taking place at U.S. bases in Okinawa, Misawa in Aomori Prefecture, Itazuke in Fukuoka Prefecture, Yokota in Tokyo and Iwakuni in Yamaguchi Prefecture. Read More Japanese Version>>>>>