As his remarks on "comfort women" provoked the UN's strong word (here and here) to the Abe administration to refute such remarks, Boy-wonder mayor of Osaka City, with his party's favorable rating plunging far below that of unpopular Democratic Party of Japan, moves on, looking for a bigger shit he can inflict on people in Japan so that everyone forgets about his "comfort women" and "adult industry" remarks.
He's found one: the US military's Osprey training.
He has formally proposed to the Abe administration that he offers Yao Airport in Yao City, Osaka as a training ground for this controversial transport aircraft of the US military.
Ostensible reason? To alleviate the suffering of Okinawa.
No kidding, mayor.
From Mainichi English, quoting Kyodo English (6/6/2013; emphasis is mine):
Hashimoto proposes hosting Osprey training flights near Osaka
TOKYO (Kyodo) -- Osaka Mayor Toru Hashimoto proposed Thursday to the government conducting some training exercises of the U.S. military's MV-22 Osprey aircraft near Osaka in a bid to reduce the burden on Okinawa Prefecture, home to the bulk of U.S. bases in Japan.
"It's important to study whether it is feasible" for some training to be conducted in Osaka Prefecture, Hashimoto told reporters after meeting with Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga at the premier's office.
"We don't know whether it is really possible...but the important thing is to get started on a feasibility study," Hashimoto said, adding a final judgment should be made by the Japanese government and the U.S. military.
Hashimoto, who co-heads the Japan Restoration Party, suggested at the meeting that training exercises for the Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft deployed at a U.S. Marine base in Okinawa should be conducted outside of the prefecture for 120 days, and that Yao Airport, located southwest of Osaka city, could host some of them.
Ichiro Matsui, the party's secretary general who doubles as Osaka governor, said Abe told those at the meeting that sharing Okinawa's burden with people on the mainland of Japan would be "natural."
Other proposals include making revisions to the Japan-U.S. Status of Forces Agreement by enabling Japan to exert jurisdiction over U.S. military personnel when they commit a crime off duty, and to have the authority to keep them in custody together with the United States.
The proposals were made at a time when the party has been trying to contain the political repercussions of Hashimoto's recent remarks that Japan's wartime system of military brothels was necessary to maintain discipline, raising ire from South Korea and elsewhere.
The outlook for implementing the proposals remains uncertain as Yao Mayor Seita Tanaka has expressed his objection. In Okinawa, Nago Mayor Susumu Inamine criticized the move as "irresponsible," because local consent had yet to be obtained in Osaka Prefecture.
Japan's top spokesman Suga told a press conference after the meeting that Tokyo would "examine" the party's proposals and that it had a responsibility to the people in Okinawa.
"We genuinely welcome the proposals as both Japanese and U.S. authorities are now considering whether it is possible for Ospreys to conduct flight training outside of Okinawa, and Japan as a whole needs to think about reducing the burden on Okinawa of hosting the bases," Suga said.
Twelve Ospreys have been deployed at the U.S. Marine Corp's Futenma Air Station in Okinawa since last year despite strong local opposition and safety concerns after a series of accidents overseas. The U.S. military has already started low-altitude training on the mainland.
Asahi Shinbun (Japanese) has another piece of Boy-wonder's utterance on this bigger-shit exercise. According to Asahi, Hashimoto said:
"I don't know this proposal is feasible or not, but from now on all airports on mainland Japan should be considered for hosting the training."
Boy-wonder will no doubt use the same template as he and his boss Shintaro Ishihara used successfully to stifle opposition to bringing in and burning disaster debris contaminated with chemicals, heavy metals, and radioactive materials. It must go like this:
People in [disaster-affected areas / Okinawa] are suffering. It is our duty to support them by taking in [the disaster debris / Osprey] so that they can feel better that everyone is sharing the burden not just them. If you are against [bringing in and burning the disaster debris / bringing in Osprey to the airport near you], that means you are against the recovery of [disaster-affected areas / Okinawa] and you are racist!
I'm almost 100% certain that this will be the narrative.
Yao Airport is, by the way, is a small local airport in the middle of crowded residential area. Osprey is to practice flying as low as 150 meters from the ground, day and night.
Boy-wonder's sidekick, Governor of Osaka Ichiro Matsui, has said he is counting on the US military to come to the rescue when a huge earthquake hits Kansai, so he will gladly offer a training location for the US military in Osaka.