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Secret pact gives U.S. forces priority use of exercise fields near Mt. Fuji

A declassified 1965 U.S. military document has revealed that two adjacent exercise fields for joint use by the U.S. forces in Japan and the Ground Japanese Self-Defense Force, located at the foot of Mt. Fuji, are actually given priority to be used by the U.S. forces up to 270 days a year under a secret Japan-U.S. agreement.

In 1967, the two governments decided to put Kita-Fuji and Higashi-Fuji exercise fields, previously U.S. military facilities, in the custody of the GSDF. However, the change was only nominal, and some years before the change, a U.S. military document had already allowed the U.S. forces priority use of the exercise fields for up to 270 days a year.

In spite of the Japanese government official explanation to the people that the GSDF is in charge of their joint use, the U.S. forces are in control.

Japanese Communist Party House of Councilors member Kami Tomoko in 2005 grilled the government regarding the priority use of the exercise fields by the U.S. forces. The recent declassified document supports the JCP criticism of deceit.

- Akahata, March 4, 2010



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