Do away with military bases abroad
Jmilitary APANESE protestors on Sunday demonstrated against the heavy US
presence on the Island of Okinawa, as tensions run high after a base employee was arrested following rape and murder of a twenty-yearold local woman. In fact this demonstration on the part of Japanese is not an isolated or new one as they have long been protesting against the presence of these bases whose personnel have often been found involved in a series of crimes such as rapes, assaults and hit and run accidents.
Despite strong opposition from the general public, the US continues to maintain a strong military presence in Japan on different pretexts especially citing the threat posed by North Korea. According to some estimates about 47,000 US personnel are stationed in the country and the Japanese government each year is paying billions of dollars to meet their cost. It is not only in Japan or the Korean peninsula but Washington - desiring to maintain its clout and sway in different regions - has spread its tentacles, meaning military presence, to almost all regions including Europe, South Asia, Western Hemisphere etc. Some reports suggest that it has about eight hundred bases outside of its borders in eighty different countries. The important development, however, is that over the past few years, there are now people in countries everywhere who are expressing resentment and challenging the very presence of these bases on their territories. Japan is just one example where people are taking to the streets against the US footprints. Similarly in our own region, the people are wary of prolonged presence of US troops in Afghanistan describing it as a persistent threat to regional peace and security. In reality, the military bases are the form of modern day colonialism that affords a means to Washington to protect its interests while dictating terms to others. Given the growing anger and anti American sentiments, the US administration must start seeing the writing on wall and do away with military tactics, if it is really interested to see this world a cradle of peace.
THE British people will vote in a referendum on June 23, 2016 whether Britain remains in the European Union (EU) or leaves it. Dubbed as “Brexit” (standing for Britain and exit), a negative vote on continued EU membership will result in far-reaching consequences not only for Britain but also for Europe and the world. British membership of EU, formerly known as EC or the European Community, and previously as EEC or European Economic Community, aka Common Market) has had a very topsy-turvy history. Britain had stood aloof from the early moves towards European integration after the World War-II.
British nationalism, and an inability to grasp post-WW-II realities, kept Britain away from the new Europe where France and Germany, the old enemies, had decided to bury the hatchet. They became the main driving force behind integration. It took Britain some years to comprehend that it had been greatly enfeebled by WW II and two Super Powers (USA and Soviet Union) had eclipsed British power. When European integration began to produce results, Britain decided to apply for membership in 1961 but it was blocked by French President Charles de Gaulle, who viewed Britain as a Trojan horse for US influence in Europe. After the departure of de Gaulle in 1969, Britain renewed its bid for membership and after prolonged negotiations, it entered the EU in 1973. British entry
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