Japanese Protesters Greet US Nuke Ship

Huge carrier arrives near Tokyo amid radiation fears
By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Sep 25, 2008 6:02 AM CDT
Protesters shout a slogan against USS George Washington at Kannonzaki, near Yokosuka, south of Tokyo, Thursday morning , Sept. 25, 2008.   (AP Photo/Shizuo Kambayashi)
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(Newser) – Japanese protesters greeted a nuclear-powered American warship at its new home port near Tokyo today, Reuters reports. The USS George Washington drew criticism after reports last month than a US submarine had leaked radioactive material at Japanese ports for 2 years —underscoring the tense relationship between Japanese citizens and the American military, especially on nuclear technology.

Taro Aso, who became Japan's prime minister yesterday, welcomed the new warship as especially important amid heightening tensions with North Korea. But many Japanese are skeptical of the US military, especially given the legacy of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. One 70-year-old housewife at the demonstration said, "I can't help but think about radiation damages, so that's why I just can't accept this."