Monday, May 3, 2010 Japan Times
When, much to the dismay of the players, the team’s scheduled flight for Ishigaki Island for a match was canceled because of foul weather, U.S. troops stationed in Okinawa offered to transport the players on a military helicopter. I wish to let not only Japanese but also Americans know of this episode, which has not been reported by the Japanese media. Particularly, I would like our American friends to know that relations of friendship and trust, as exemplified by this incident, exist between our two peoples.
I have given up making proposals to solve this issue. Rather, I have kept pleading for Americans to have patience, stressing the importance of the U.S.-Japan alliance, which is a common asset for our two countries that is too valuable to be harmed.
It is unlikely that Americans would ask for the revocation of this decision. Remembering that the South Korean military once rejected remaining under the U.S. command, many U.S. soldiers find it humiliating for the U.S. to beg Koreans to allow it to take the command again. They are now of the view that Koreans should command as they wish.
In conclusion, I wish to stress to our American friends that relations of mutual trust definitely exist between our two countries. It should be obvious from the trend of the past 15 years that the U.S.-Japan alliance has steadily strengthened. What we see today is just temporary confusion and an interruption in this trend. Opinion polls have shown that no other nation in the world is more pro-American than Japan and Taiwan.