I never enjoy seeing people lose their livelihoods, but what did people on Okinawa expect was going to happen when it has gotten to the point that seems that every time a US servicemember passes gas in public it makes national headlines?
CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — Japanese bar owners on Okinawa are urging the U.S. military to end its ban on off-base alcohol consumption, saying a steep drop-off in drinking among servicemembers is cutting deeply into their bottom lines.
Since the military imposed a nighttime curfew in October and later banned all off-base drinking on the island, 23 bars have shut down around the Marine Corps’ Camp Hansen alone, according to bar owners associations in Okinawa City and Kin, which filed a petition Tuesday seeking the island governor’s help in urging looser liberty rules.
That is about half of the bars and restaurants that specialize in selling alcohol to servicemembers around Camp Hansen, and other owners remain worried about their financial futures, said Munehito Yamagawa, a member of the Kin Bar Owner’s Association who owns bars outside Camp Hansen’s main gate. [Stars and Stripes]