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The Battle of Okinawa ended 70 years ago on June 23, yet for some Okinawans the struggle continues as they resist the ongoing presence of the U.S. military. Although Okinawa was legally “returned” to Japan in 1972, U.S. bases still occupy nearly 18 percent of the island, with as many as 25,000 military personnel currently stationed there. With MV-22 Osprey aircraft being delivered to the island’s U.S. Futenma base and the continued construction of a new base at Henoko, Okinawans, Japanese and Americans alike have been expressing concern and criticism.

American filmmaker John Junkerman focuses on the problems with U.S. bases in Okinawa in his latest documentary, “Okinawa: Urizun no Ame”, (released internationally as “Okinawa: The Afterburn”), which is being screened for six weeks from June 23 (Okinawa Memorial Day) at Iwanami Hall in Tokyo, and will run indefinitely at Sakurazaka Theater in Okinawa before moving on to theaters nationwide.

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