In the period of the occupation by GHQ (General Headquarters of the Allied Forces), which lasted until 1952 in mainland Japan and until 1972 in Okinawa, it is reported that explosives were often used for fisheries over southwestern Japan. This kind of fishing has been banned by the law of hazardous materials, as well as by the fisheries law because explosive are quite possible to damage fishing grounds. This illegal fishing, however, was exercised in this period of sudden population increase caused by colonizers’ and immigrants’ return from Taiwan, Micronesia, and Southeast Asia because of Japan’s defeat. Especially in rural societies of small islands, who had sent off numbers of immigrants because of lack of lands and capitals to feed all the inhabitants, had difficulties in this period of massive returns. The “illegal fishing” was, therefore, exercised as a means to meet the huge demands of food, though situation differs according to places and periods. The details of this activity will elucidate the problem in fisheries and rural societies in this age, and focuses a significant aspect of the history of post-war Japanese fisheries. However, those who were concerned are not willing to speak on this matter because of its illegality. Now, almost half a century after the end of this fishery, the author feels that a large network of researchers should be organized to collect and record the related testimonies from various areas. This paper, as a deliberate contribution to the coming and far-reaching project, describes a tip of my own researches. In the present paper, the review of published materials relating to blast fishing is followed by analysis of testimonies from two witnesses living on two islands belonging to Yaeyama Archipelago, the westernmost islands in Japan’s territory. It is located just close to Taiwan, and separated from the Japan’s four major islands by a 1,000 km distance, and even from Okinawa Island by a distance of more than 400 km. Both of the two testimonies showed a various situations and processes of blast fishing which cannot be imagined from a stereotyped thought. The testimony from Iriomote Island revealed the various sources of explosives: dynamites provided from a coal mine, grenade, and extraction from unused cannon balls or mines. The blast fishing also proved to be conducted by not only fulltime fishers but also farmers, coal miners, soldiers in charge, and ex-soldiers who remained on the island. Such various non-fishers had to overcome the sharp increase in population and accompanying food demand without any fishing gears and skills. The series of the examples which the witness raised showed that, in 1930s through 1960s when economic conditions changed unstably, the socially-disadvantaged in each period used explosives for their own survival. The testimony from Kohama Island where fulltime fishers conducted blast fishing, on the other hand, showed a highly sophisticated integration of explosives into the technological system. For example, they adjusted the volume of explosives according to the target species and merchants’ requirement, while they also considered the point and timing to throw the explosive according to the species’ behavior. Their fishing method proved not to be destructive because the impulse did not reach to the bottom where a fisher once escaped onto in order to avoid the injury. Their activities were also far from easy business but a means of livelihood in a limited opportunity. Further collection and analysis of historical testimonies on blast fishing are expected now that the witnesses are getting old, although the researchers should pay attentions to the witnesses’ PTSD and privacy...(continued)...
There are almost no previous studies that examine the Reversion of Okinawa in the context of the Reversion of Ogasawara. The Ogasawara Reversion was considered a precedent of the Okinawa Reversion by the State Department and the Joint Chiefs of Staff. Thus, in order to re-examine the Okinawa Reversion Negotiations, this paper demonstrates the link between the two negotiations by exploring the diplomatic documents that are located in the National Archives II, Collage Park. First, this paper discusses flaws of the prior consultation system of the U.S.-Japan Security Treaty, which is essential to understand the problems of the secret nuclear arrangements that were agreed by the United States and Japan during the negotiations concerning the reversions of Ogasawara and Okinawa. Then, this paper contrasts the word usage of the two arrangements within historical background. Finally, it clarifies the linkage between the two reversion negotiations by demonstrating why there are certain differences in the word usage in the two documents. This research concludes that the U.S. could return Okinawa without leaving nuclear weapons because Japan agreed to re-store the weapons in Iwo Jima in time of emergency; the U.S. perceived Iwo Jima as an alternative nuclear storage facility to Okinawa. Japanese negotiators kept insisting that Okinawa had to be returned denuclearized. However, what the U.S. negotiators wanted the most was the right to use bases in Japan, without Japan’s refusal, in the emergent situation in Korean Peninsula and Taiwan. Therefore, the State Department returned Okinawa without nuclear weapons in exchange for the rights of utilizing the bases in time of need and the rights of transit and re-entry of nuclear weapons in the contingency situations. The U.S. could dominate negotiations over the Okinawa Reversion because it had already obtained the alternative to Okinawa; Iwo Jima.
Amami Islands are not only remote islands from the economic center, but also has been placed on socially and economically difficult conditions. Therefore, in June of 1954, six months after Amami Islands were returned to the mainland, the ‘Act on Special Measures for the Reconstruction of Amami Islands was enacted and reconstruction project were started. Since 1974, this Act was updated to “Special Measures for the Promotion and Development of Amami Islands” and it began to support tourism industry which was one of the important sources of income in Amami Islands. Tourism Industry of the Amami Islands has had high proportion of marine tourism such as fishing and diving since the demand occurred. However, the tourism based on the resources of terrestrial environment such as ‘biodiversity’ has been gradually increasing recently. In May 2003, the Ryukyu islands (Amami-Ryukyu) was selected as one of the World Natural Heritage candidate sites by Ministry of Environment, and this has affected “the Promotion and Development” projects as mentioned earlier, and has also advanced a new tourism policy. This paper explains the background of ecotourism in Amami Oshima by focusing on the administrative policies. And then, it focuses on the actions of the people who started the nature guide industry of terrestrial environment from the mid-1990s. Based on the above explanations, it clarifies the process of how the administration and guides in Amami Oshima came to accept ecotourism. The Administration of Kagoshima Prefecture has introduced the ecotourism for the registration of World Natural Heritage of the Amami Islands. In other words, the recognition and acceptance of ecotourism by Kagoshima Prefecture has been a top-down “ecotourism as a national policy”. On the other hand, the guides who started professional companies in the 1990s had already established their own tour formats such as “outdoor experience” or “nature experience tour”. Furthermore, they learned the concept of ecotourism through a private organization such as Japan Ecotourism Society. Nevertheless, they just realized that the concept was not much different from what they had been practicing. For this reason, they didn’t actively claim that their guide industry could be defined as “ecotourism”. That is, for those guides, the acceptance of ‘ecotourism’ in 1990s meant nothing but the ‘acceptance of the word’.
Almost all Japanese local governments formulated strategies in 2015 to prevent population decrease. These many strategies include component of tourism development as considered giving positive impacts for preventing population decrease. Especially in the island area of Kagoshima Prefecture, more than 44% of the strategies made by local governments has been focusing on ecotourism. They regard ecotourism as methodology for producing brightness future in their areas. In order to develop ecotourism, investment in human capital is one of the most important factors. The training system for ecotour guides is established in Yakushima and Amami, which is registered as World Natural Heritage and as a provisional list of World Natural Heritage respectively. Other small local governments should educate guides if they want to start ecotourism from now. There is a good example in Koshiki Islands in Kagoshima. The community business and ecotourism runs simultaneously. This combination produce stabilization of their business mutually. The local government realize that ecotourism gives good influence for running their community business.