Okinawans “Trying To Down Osprey With Kites”


Anti-American protesters in Okinawa have been flying kites and balloons around a US airbase in protest against the deployment of the supposedly accident-prone V-22 Osprey to the islands, in what critics suspect is an effort to deliberately induce an accident to better prove their point.

According to media reports, a group of 20 Okinawan “peace activists” gathered outside Futenma airbase in order to fly kites and let off balloons in protest at the recent deployment of 12 of the US military’s Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey transport aircraft to the islands.

They were joined by 130 protesters, from whom they raised ¥70,000 “so we can fly more kites and raise more balloons,” and ominously proclaimed “if the people of this prefecture are serious, we can stop the Osprey!”

Police and USMC MPs observed the protest from a distance, but did not intervene. It is not clear whether the kites and balloons were ever in the flight path of any of the Ospreys, or whether they would have any effect beyond being shredded were an Osprey to collide with one.


The Okinawa media has also been lovingly running reports of a 5-year-old girl coached into saying that “we don’t want typhoons and the Osprey coming to Okinawa, because it is a bad airplane,” amongst other reports which generally contrive to suggest the plane is little more than an aerial bomb poised to fall on Okinawan homes.

One report claimed that even Hawaiians opposed the plane being deployed to Okinawa (no such reports were apparent in the US media), and even the NHK could not resist broadcasting pictures of Ospreys “appearing to undergo maintenance for 5 days without moving” at one of their stops at Japanese airbases along their route to Okinawa.

A subsequent protest saw a further 750 complain of the aircraft’s presence, with the communist party vowing to chase the aircraft back to America.


Occasional expressions of pro-Osprey sentiment have gone largely unreported:


And for those wondering just why friends of China might be so concerned about the aircraft’s presence, or why the US and Japan might be so keen on it:


As the US military’s first tilt-rotor aircraft, the V-22 Osprey has had a long and relatively controversial development history stretching from inception in 1981 to full introduction in 2007, coloured by massive cost overruns, inter-service politicking, and most notoriously a variety of design flaws and deadly accidents.

Whilst now in full deployment throughout the US and beyond, in Japan there has been considerable opposition to their deployment from left-wing anti-American activists citing concerns about them falling in populated areas or increasing tensions with China.

However, it has also been noted that in most cases these critics are completely opposed to any US presence in any case, whether for political reasons or simply because they are greatly aggrieved by US forces turning vast tracts of Okinawa into bases which the Japanese government  has been largely unable to persuade the US to reduce, to say nothing of them occasionally killing and raping locals.

The Japanese government’s response has been to ask the US government to assure it that the aircraft are totally safe, which it did, and to allow the deployment to go ahead, but for some reason this did little to appease the Okinawans stuck with most of the US bases and aircraft.


Whilst Okinawans are noted for their hatred of US forces, the majority of Japanese are staunchly in favour of US forces being present (as long as most of them are dumped on faraway Okinawa, at any rate), and many are aghast at the clear implication that the Okinawan protesters are hoping to down or otherwise endanger US aircraft with their kite and balloon antics:

“Are they trying to down one?”

“Of course they are.”

“They are obviously trying to cause an accident here.”

“They are praying every day for one to crash.”

“They are desperate for one to fall on a city.”

“If one gets into the engine of an Osprey and brings it down, will they take responsibility for the deaths?”

“They will just blame it on the Osprey being defective.”

“This has nothing to do with the planes having a high accident rate – this is sheer terrorism.”

“Do they really think anyone would be persuaded when they do such reckless stuff?”

“These are just crazed leftists trying to actively down one!”

“This is no protest, this is attempting to interfere with an aircraft.”

“Are these people idiots? And with China gearing up to try to get hold of Okinawa…”

“Just a bunch of Chinese stooges.”

“If one goes down it will be China who have the last laugh.”

“No wonder they all hate it, look at the range on that thing – it can reach Shanghai and the Senkaku islands.”

“It is pretty clear who is behind all these protests over the Osprey.”

“Yet when China is busy rolling out its new arsenal of missiles and helicopters the mass media and leftists are silent!”

“Finally, should anything happen the US has made its intentions clear with this deployment.”

“We need these for the SDF, they would be an ace when it comes to defending outlying islands.”

“The Osprey deployment is really just an advertisement intended to get us to buy them up.”

“Let’s see what happens when we try flying kites around the Chinese and Korean embassies!”

“They are enemies of both Japan and the USA, they really ought to be locked up.”

“Arrest them, this is terrorism!”

“Attempted murder!”

“This is probably about as effective as a bamboo spear is against a B29.”

“Could a kite even have any effect on one of their engines?”

“Get a Stinger if you are that desperate to down one!”

“Weren’t these groups supposed to be trying to make Okinawa a safer place?”

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    Avatar of Kamigoroshi
    Comment by Kamigoroshi
    22:40 06/10/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Haven't they learned at all?! Just replace the V-22 Ospreys with a couple of cute Strike Witches already. It'll be a win-win situation for both sides.

    Avatar of Chris
    Comment by Chris
    00:07 07/10/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Or let the Anime community paint on them. That always works.

    Comment by Anonymous

    "Those Damn Otaku's"!

    Yea nice signals. You know Japan hates your otaku guts already don't you guys?

    They look at you and LAUGH!

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:26 07/10/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    Just add a C in front of Osprey and it'll be all good.

    Avatar of Justin iZ Here
    Comment by Justin iZ Here
    00:55 07/10/2012 # ! Quality (+1.0)

    ok I have to admit, that actually made me smile.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:48 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    ohgawd mah brain

    Comment by Anonymous
    01:20 09/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Made me smile as well I loved it

    Comment by Anonymous
    14:43 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    You hit my laughing brain

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:15 07/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Or let people know that the serviceman crime rate on Okinawa is 53 as compared to 183 per 10,000 on Okinawa.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:51 07/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Actually, this leads to a fantastic thought. Why not decal Strike Witches onto the Ospreys?

    Itasha-Osprey for a peaceful future!

    Avatar of Benoist
    Comment by Benoist
    03:12 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    unite our strenghs with 2ch and protest as follows :
    no osupurei !
    more kosupurei !

    Avatar of Benoist
    Comment by Benoist
    03:42 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    oops, missed the one at 00:26 07/10/2012.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:50 06/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.9)

    To the eyes of one of the Osprey pilots...

    "Look guys! Balloons and kites. They really love us don't they. Flying this aircraft feels more patriotic already!"

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:44 06/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    until a few of those kites and balloons gets tangled in the rotor

    Comment by Dark Mage
    08:37 07/10/2012 # ! Quality (+0.8)

    If it's normal kite string it won't do a thing.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:19 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    It's secret ultralight future-grade plasma wire. Those protesters have a larger budget then they let on.


    Comment by Anonymous
    20:42 09/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)


    The Osprey did have some issues in the beginning, but it was a radical design at the time. These things are rock solid now. These people are simply not happy with the US' presence and will latch onto ANYTHING that supports their view, even if it is uneducated and dated.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:28 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    time to bust out the FGM-148

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:32 08/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Only thing birds do to aircraft is make a nice aroma of cooked bird crap and blood that is a pain to clean off.

    About the only bird that is a threat are pelicans (or equivalent mass.)

    Kites and balloons won't stand a chance...not even sure if they could get them high enough to get into the flight path.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:35 08/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Trying to cause the planes to go down.

    Obvious they are with kites and balloons to get sucked-in and tangled in the engine.

    Same thing happens when a bird flies into the engine or gets sucked in. Can cause whole planes to go down.

    Now how about nice rubber and string sucked in that engine too?

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:14 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sure it won't... It's not like the Osprey, at the time, didn't kill its most seasoned pilot or scores of others for no apparent reason.

    Comment by Anonymous
    12:12 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    @anon 2:15 Typical American response. The fact is, the design is inherently unstable. The Osprey is garbage and if you're going to be working on them it will probably be cleaning up wreckage when they fall out of the sky.

    Comment by Anonymous
    15:44 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    You know what else is unstable F-16s (takes 3 computers to keep stability, if any one fails the airplane cannot fly safely), but you don't see those fuckers falling out of the sky. So my best advice to you would be to let military professionals use equipment they know works, and you can go about you little civilian life.

    Comment by Anonymous
    21:46 09/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    At least the F16 still obey to the law of aerodynamics. In the case of the F117, flight computer failure immediately turned it into an anvil... midflight or not... The only law still applying was gravity... everything else was suspended until it went back to the ground in an expensive fireball...

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:43 09/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    @ 22:55

    And what military vehicle isn't now days? Believe it or not, military mechanics know a fair amount and usually get manuals STRAIGHT from the civilian manufacturers.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:55 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    The Osprey was designed by civilian engineers. It is only maintained by the military.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:43 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    A few kites and balloons won't bring down something like the Osprey.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:15 07/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    @caiooa, Its actually now officially one of the safest aircraft in existence, without over 100,000 test hours with no accidents. all the "deadly" accidents you hear of and see are from the aircrafts early days, before it was induced into the military.

    I know because I'm a American "lapdog" in the US Navy, and might even be working on these in the near future.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:56 07/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Just about every military aircraft, irregardless of nationality, has had development accidents. When a newly developed aircraft has problems, it's simply normal.

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:55 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.4)

    The U.S. has ordered more of them, with major upgrades, so the Chine....I mean the Okinawans will just have to live with it.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:13 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    "Irregardless" is not a real word, anon.

    Avatar of caiooa
    Comment by caiooa
    01:41 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    "As the US military’s first tilt-rotor aircraft, the V-22 Osprey has had a long and relatively controversial development history stretching from inception in 1981 to full introduction in 2007, coloured by massive cost overruns, inter-service politicking, and most notoriously a variety of design flaws and deadly accidents."
    it don't need a ballon in the rotors to fall down.

    Avatar of Firetribe
    Comment by Firetribe
    23:18 08/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    "Its actually now officially one of the safest aircraft in existence, without over 100,000 test hours with no accidents. all the "deadly" accidents you hear of and see are from the aircrafts early days, before it was induced into the military."

    Are you kidding?

    Comment by Anonymous
    20:13 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Ospreys are flying coffins.

    Comment by Anonymous
    06:07 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Sort of like MS windows after a few service packs. Eventually they can get something buggy into an usable state.

    The issue is how much more money/resources get sank into it.

    Avatar of HouseLife
    Comment by HouseLife
    04:41 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    @ Anon 3:13

    This isn't an attack on the statement made by that anon, but thank you for being someone else who said it. Even if it were a real word, it'd basically mean 'not regardless' which would defeat the purpose of even using the word.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:36 08/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I'm sure it would be like, "felt that?" "nah".

    Comment by Anonymous
    08:14 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.1)

    The American bases in Okinawa have a 53 of 10,000 crime rate versus the Japanese (Okinawan) crime rate of 183 per 10,000 there.

    Avatar of Artefact
    Comment by Artefact

    Okinawan media, so far from impartial, but this piece asserts only 13% of serious crimes committed by base personnel result in a prosecution.

    The claim that US personnel commit less crime than the natives (which at first glance seems to be absurd if you consider the relative criminality of Americans vs Japanese, and the fact that any population of young men is going to be vastly more criminal than a balanced population) has been subject to some scrutiny:

    They point out that the lower crime statistic for US forces is for off-base crime only - US forces do not even have to report on base crime to the Japanese police, and US servicemen obviously spend most of their time on base.

    It may well be a comparison of crimes US personnel commit off base (apparently at much lower rates of conviction than Japanese) to crimes committed by the Okinawan population as a whole.

    Comment by Anonymous
    13:11 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Honestly you can't compare "local" crime rates which is typically a set ratio for a region, with the crime rates of foreign service members stationed in the same area. Foreign troops are *not* considered domestic residents or even 'visitors', and as of such must abide by specific guidelines that regulate their interactions, which makes outright crime much more 'intentional' and malicious. They are also engaged in an active service period, as opposed to civilians simply 'living' in the area, thus adding responsibilities to their behaviour. Most developed countries that station troops overseas know this - they impose stricter discipline and ethic demands when concerning interaction between military personnel and locals, sometimes imposing limitations on contact altogether. In this regard, America sadly chooses to purposedly neglect.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Which is because servicemen are highly disciplined.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:55 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Other countries' armies free of crime? No.
    Better than the US? Yes.

    Most military don't even bother to report...?
    LOL retard.

    Comment by Anonymous
    09:17 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    You call that figure "disciplined"? LMAO. They're stationed in a country that's not their own FFS.

    Comment by Anonymous
    11:10 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    09:17 LMAO fool talking out of its ass again. You tell me one military/army free of crime, then compare rates of crime between any military organizations. There's a reason why property values decrease around army bases all over the world, especially those not affiliated with US. Most military don't even bother to report or publicize their shortcomings like US does to that degree.

    LMAO kid smearing shit all over the comments trying to convince itself.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:54 06/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    I live 3 min from the Boeing plant that builds these birds (Also the one where the first one was made and developed). Just a bunch of crazys out there, these things are safe and sound. Cant forget it was still roughly a prototype when most went down.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:33 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    While the most publicized accidents were certainly many years ago, and several of the more recent fatal incidents have been due to human error, there have been a least three or four design-related, non-fatal crashes since it went operational in 2007.

    That said, the V-22 is a lot safer than sensationalist press reports would have us believe.

    Comment by Anonymous
    22:45 06/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.8)

    Weren't these used to save Japanese lives during Operation Tomodachi?! Hypocrites, the whole lot of them.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:07 07/10/2012 # ! Good (+0.6)

    Generally I do not agree with a lot made ​​by the U.S. government, but I think a tremendous stupidity just now that China threatens Japanese territory.
    After all is a helicopter transport.
    Maybe some Chinese sympathizer is bankrolling these activists!
    Who knows the next catastrophe will remember that these helicopters available ..

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:54 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    So when China has people that do dumbass things it's China's fault, yet when Japan has people doing dumbass thing it is ALSO China's fault. May be next up some poor soul get murdered by some thug in America, it would be China's fault again because people claim chinese "pay" the thug to kill random people lol

    It's convenient to ignore the fact there are idiots all over the world regardless of what nation it is...

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:54 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I agree with stupid people in every corner, but it is not coincidence the increase of U.S. troops in the island!
    It is a direct response to the Chinese threat to take back what they think is theirs.
    And there is a treaty of protection with U.S., which like it or not the Japanese people need ..

    Unfortunately, the Chinese government has done a lot of stupid and pretend he is not guilty of anything it is naive on your part.

    Comment by Anonymous
    23:00 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Well, think of it this way, they are probably idiots, but it is quite possible china have a hand in this, and if they do, points to them, means they know how to play the war game.

    Propaganda, espionage and social sabotage have been in war and politics since people started learning other people's languages, and war hasn't changed all that much.

    Comment by Anonymous

    Nice Engrish skills you have.

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:19 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Or that the Japanese are too xenophobic. Anyone foreign to them are feared/hated. They go as far as people that are non-Japan born but Japanese by blood.

    Comment by Anonymous
    10:07 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    There is a difference between Native Okinawans and Japanese people living in Okinawa. Just like Native Hawaiians and US mainlanders living in Hawaii...

    Comment by Anonymous
    02:22 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Oh noes! more black ships!!!

    Comment by Anonymous
    00:36 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Yet those leftists seem to love China.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:16 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    WOuldn't it be funny is they caused one to crash (safely) and it landed on the protesters with the kites.

    Comment by Anonymous
    05:04 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    Last I checked, there aren't any soldiers in Okinawa, only Marines. There's a difference, you know.

    Comment by Anonymous

    What's funny is most mainland naicha look down on local Okinawans as dumb country folk and second class citizens. But then again, most of these protesters aren't even Okinawa, they're from mainland Japan.

    Comment by Anonymous

    00:48 you got that backwards
    Mainland Japan wants these, Okinawans don't want these because of the failure rates and noise and more planes going there in general because it highers the chances of accidents/noise/soldiers raping Okinawans.

    IMO it wouldn't be these kind of problem if the US military actually cared more about the people living there and be stricter on the soldiers so they can't just go out and rape people and not get punished, and built bases in a way it'll affect the residents least, and build shooting ranges that aren't dangerous to the citizens of Okinawa in the first place.
    Most people that join the army are undereducated hot heads anyway they need to be coached more intensively or else they'll just end up doing stupid stuff.

    Avatar of kazaza2
    Comment by kazaza2
    00:12 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (+0.2)

    Wonder how vociferous these groups would be if the PRC tries to make good on its demand for the return of Okinawa.

    Just a bunch of pro PRC fellow travelers trying to stir up trouble. We have enough of them in the US singing the praises of China.

    Comment by Anonymous
    03:05 07/10/2012 # ! Neutral (0)

    I think the government all needs to silently take note of who is attending these events, making anti-US comments, thinking just because they got a mouth anything they say means something, etc. Thanks for showing your face in public and getting recorded LOL

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