Yokosuka Peace Squadron


The Yokosuka Peace Squadron (YPS) is a group of citizens trying to take back our seas from the military. With the goal also of creating a symbiotic relationship with the seas, we have plans to enjoy events to become closer to the sea. Come aboard our boats with us!

       YPS was formed in 1987 at the initiative of gCaptainh Suzuki Shigeki, inspired by the world-wide anti-nuclear movement of the 1980s.

       As in other places in the world, there was a big rise of the anti-nuclear movement in Australia and New Zealand. Four citizens of Yokosuka visited these countries to meet people in the movement there and deepen solidarity with them. At that time, we met Mr. George Armstrong of the Auckland Peace Squadron, New Zealand, who suggested that we form a similar organization since there were similarities between Auckland and Yokosuka in terms of the structure of the cities. This was the direct motivation for the formation of the Yokosuka Peace Squadron.

       The Yokosuka Peace Squadron sails out to Yokosuka Port to protest the bases of the U.S. Navy as well as Japanfs Maritime Self Defense Force and their military operations. We gather regularly from 11 am on the last Sunday of every month for sea-borne demonstrations and to monitor the naval base. Everyone is welcome aboard. The route starts from Fukaura Boat Park and goes to Nagaura Port and Yokosuka Port before returning to Fukaura Boat Park.

       What is special about YPS is that while having fun on the sea (military bases), you can at the same time act against the base. You can fully appreciate the greatness of having the sea and boats through the experiences of a boating school, fishing, island hunting, and going out in the water on a rubber boat/kayak, etc. Please join us on the water.


Much to be learned from the recent accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station

The following message was delivered on the water on Apr 24.


Good morning everyone in the US Navy 7th Fleet,

We are a group of citizens living in Yokosuka, Yokohama, anyway, in the Metropolitan area. We thank you for your diligent work of various kinds to help out those in Tohoku area who have been suffered by the powerful earthquake and massive tsunami. What you did were reported through internet, and via conventional media.

              The disaster is now called gtriple-difficultyh with the accident at Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station. It is natural we thought of the CVN73 George Washington and our community, a soon as we learned about the accident. Uneasy was the word that explains how we felt. The CVN73 is just beside us and is driven by the nuclear power. What if an accident occurs on her?

              In Fukushima, radiation continues to be released, or leaked, contaminating the air we breathe and the sea water. The people have been asked, or ordered to evacuate. To our frequent inquiries about the nuclear power station on George Washington, the US military has been replying gitfs safeh.

              Itfs safe because, for instance, the power plants are much smaller than those of the commercial nuclear power plant, and itfs rated much lower. Their replies tend to be about technical specifications. Technical specifications are set at the beginning for designing and are only based on ganticipationh. As the world has learned in the recent accident of Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Station, what really could happen cannot e predicated 100% accurately. In other words, human being anticipation could be failed in the reality.

              To protect our future and to protect the children, we have to continue voicing gNO NUKESh, gNo more nuclear power of anythingh

Donft Make Tokyo Bay into a Dead Sea! 
Action on the sea against a VCN

Taking special notice of the return of USS George Washington, which evacuated from Yokosuka port, the Yokosuka Peace Squadron (YPS) took action against it on the sea on April 24 using our yacht and motor boat. Fourteen people participated in the action.

The stormy rain of the previous day stopped magically and under a blue sky, it was a perfect day for cruising, but we came not for a cruise but to protest the return of the VCN. After witnessing the grave accident at the Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Plant, we stressed the danger of the nuclear reactors in front of us, i.e., the VCN.

We cannot trust the assurances of safety given by the Japanese or the U.S. governments. A nuclear accident may occur any time so we donft want dangerous nuclear power. We must not make Tokyo Bay into a dead sea.

Press Release


Protest Action on the Water against

the First Ballistic Missile Defense Training in Yokosuka Port


On the windy morning of February 27, members of the Yokosuka Peace Squadron carried out a protest action on the water against the Ballistic Missile Defense Training conducted jointly by the U.S. 7th fleet and Japanfs Maritime Defense Force for four days from February 28 to March 3. This joint exercise seems to have brought ballistic missile defense from the experimental level to the operational level.


We opposed the training for a number of reasons, including:

(1) It increases military tensions in East Asia and impedes the path toward peaceful settlement;

(2) The SDFfs participation in the U.S. missile defense program is in conflict with the ban of the right of collective defense stipulated in the Constitution; and

(3) Japanfs involvement in the joint research of gSM3 block 2Ah (sea-based interceptor missiles) is a violation of the ban on weapon exports.

 (The bellow message was delivered to the US Navy 7th Fleet during the protest on the water.)

 February 27, 2011

 Hello everyone in the US Navy 7th Fleet,

               We are Peace Squadron of Yokosuka; a group of citizens who wish to put back the peaceful environment on our water.

              We just learned that soon there will be a joint exercise held by Japan Maritime Defense Force and the US Navy for intercepting ballistic missile. This will be the first exercise of this sort.

               We have been raising our voices against the MD, Missile Defense Program. Missile Defense is a way for collective defense and our constitution prohibits us from participating in collective defense. We are pledged not to initiate war or to be in war by our constitution.

               Despite of our strong voices, the program has been steadily solidified spending million of dollars. MD is not defense; itfs purely offensive. Itfs provocative to the neighboring countries. It is not for peoplefs security. It rather could introduce war which is not necessary to begin with. It takes up our taxes.

               We refuse to be in unnecessary war and we refuse that our money is to be used to kill others. We refuse our water, any water in the world, to be a part of deadly program.

               We strongly urge everyone involved to work for immediate cease of the exercise. 

Thirteen people participated in the protest action.

The warships involved in the training included the cruiser USS Shiloh (right) and the Aegis-class destroyer JS Chokai.
In the afternoon, members of the group went to the Maritime Staff Office to deliver a letter of protest but had to settle for passing the letter over the iron gate as the officers who met us refused to open it. (See the letter of protest below)

Our Demand: Stop the Joint BMD Training!

To: Head of the JMSDF Yokosuka Regional District Headquarters
From: Hikaku Shimin Sengen Undo Yokosuka (Yokosuka Citizens for Peace)
Yokosuka Heiwa Sendan (Yokosuka Peace Squadron)
Date: February 27, 2011

On February 22, the Maritime Staff Office announced a plan entitled gOn the exercise of the BMD special training.h It stated that a U.S.-Japan joint exercise would be conducted on the interception of ballistic missiles from February 28 to March 3. We demand that you cancel this exercise, as we believe that the missile defense program will only threaten peace in East Asia and create military tension.

The Japanese government began to participate in the U.S. missile defense program in 2003, and since then has spent one trillion yen in tax money for the program-related items, e.g., refurbishing and conducting launch tests on Aegis destroyers, carrying out exercises on the deployment and transportation of PAC3 missiles, and measures against North Korean missile tests. We heard that this will be the first simulation training on the interception of ballistic missiles at Yokosuka base. This is nothing but a military buildup under the name of defense, and has the potential to lead to a new gCold War.h

East Asia, where we live, is situated within a dangerous military balance among Russia, which confronts the United States, North Korea, which has repeatedly carried out nuclear tests and missile launches and shelled Pyeongdong Island, and China which has been building aircraft carriers in search of marine supremacy. It is obvious that this gtrainingh is linked to the United States-South Korea joint military maneuvers scheduled to be held from February 28 to March 10, abandoning the path to disarmament and a peaceful settlement but increasing military confrontation and tension.

JMSDFfs participation in the U.S. missile defense program will lead to its automatic integration into the U.S. military operations to defend the U.S. and ultimately to its exercise of the right of collective defense, which is prohibited by the Constitution. The military defense program is a system that places the mainland U.S. and its allies under a single command. Once Japan joins the missile defense program, it will be integrated under the command and control of the U.S. military, and will have no choice but to exercise the right to collective defense.

What we are most concerned about in the area of missile defense is that through the U.S.-Japan joint research on gSM3 block 2A,h scheduled to be deployed in 2015, Japanfs gThree Principles on Arms Exportsh may be violated. This is a policy that highlights Japanfs pacifism following its defeat in World War II, and is a gtreasureh that we can boast of to the world. It is thanks to these principles that Japan has been able to take initiative on issues such as disarmament and arms reduction in the United Nations.

The United States has been pushing Japan on gSM3 block 2A,h intending to get it deployed in other countries participating in missile defense once it is completed. The principles will consequently be broken.

We call for the cancellation of the BMD training in Yokosuka.
We call on the Japanese government to withdraw from the missile defense network.
We call for a peaceful nuclear-free and missile-free world.

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