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Yasukatsu Matsushima

Author:Yasukatsu Matsushima
1963年琉球石垣島生まれ。石垣島、南大東島、与那国島、沖縄島にて育つ。

その後、東京、グアム、パラオ、沖縄島、静岡、京都、滋賀にて学び、働き、生活する。

著書に『沖縄島嶼経済史―12世紀から現在まで』藤原書店、2002年
『琉球の「自治」』藤原書店、2006年
『島嶼沖縄の内発的発展―経済・社会・文化』(編著)藤原書店、2010年、
『ミクロネシア―小さな島々の自立への挑戦』早稲田大学出版部、2007年
『琉球独立への道』法律文化社、2012年
『琉球独立論ー琉球民族のマニフェスト』バジリコ、2014年
『琉球独立ー御真人の疑問にお答えします』Ryukyu企画、2014年
『琉球独立宣言ー実現可能な5つの方法』講談社文庫、2015年
『民際学の展開ー方法論・人権・地域・環境の視座から』(編著)晃洋書房、2012年
『琉球列島の環境問題ー「復帰」40年・持続可能なシマ社会へ』(編著)高文研、2012年
『3・11以後何が変わらないのか』(共著)岩波書店、2013年
『島嶼経済とコモンズ』(編著)晃洋書房、2015年
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Decolonization process requires multi-party effort

琉球に何度も来て、グアムとともに脱植民地化をと訴えてきたエドさんが、グアムの新聞で2015年に新たな政治的地位を問う住民投票を実施すると述べています。完全独立、自由連合国、州の選択肢からチャモロ人が決定します。琉球でも自らの意思で島の未来を決めたいです。




Marianas Variety 16th,July

Decolonization process requires multi-party effort

(Second of a two-part series)

IF A public education campaign begins soon and everything falls into place, a self-determination plebiscite is likely to happen in two years, according to Edward Alvarez, executive director of the Commission on Decolonization.

“Realistically, if we have the money and the money is given to us now, I can say comfortably that August 2015 will be the date,” Alvarez said.

Currently, the three task forces under the Decolonization Commission are drafting their individual position papers, each explaining and advocating the three political status options for Guam: statehood, independence, and free association.

“These choices were set by the United Nations and based on the UN format that we are following now,” Alvarez said.

Prior to adopting the UN-based arrangement, Guam was following the congressional format that required engagement with the U.S. Congress to get a political status established for the island, Alvarez said.

In 1997, then-Sen. Hope Cristobal introduced a bill, now Public Law 23-147, which eliminated the requirement to seek congressional action.

Choices can expand

But choices are not limited to the three political status options, Alvarez said.

“There is nothing in the law that precludes voters from choosing any other status on the ballot,” Alvarez said. “They can start a drive for other options, such as commonwealth or incorporated status. They can start a petition and they must get a certain number of people to sign to get it on the ballot.”

Inclusive process

Alvarez said the plebiscite is exclusive to “native inhabitants” as set by precedents that upheld indigenous peoples' inalienable right to choose a political status for themselves.

But once the political status is selected, Alvarez said, the subsequent process, such as the ratification of a Guam Constitution, will involve everyone on island.

“People who have migrated to Guam, those who have made Guam their home and raised their children here, those who pay their taxes and contribute to the economy will not be left out,” Alvarez said. “Everyone will have the right to participate in a vote on the Constitution.”

Where does it begin?

The path to decolonization is not a one-way street, Alvarez said.

Instead, the process requires multi-party efforts – the local community, the United States and the United Nations.

“We need to work together. The UN needs to work with us, the U.S. need to work with us,” Alvarez said. “The UN cannot demand the U.S. The UN does not have the enforcement powers. Everybody needs to come to the table.”

On the local front, Alvarez said he has been conducting information campaigns in schools and public forums to educate the community of all aspects of the self-determination process.

The education campaign, he added, also requires a marketing strategy to expand the advocacy for Guam.

On the national level, he said, the plan includes teaming up with fellow territories and networking with Chamorros living in the U.S. mainland, who will lobby their senators and congressmen on behalf of Guam.

“I think if you have hundreds and thousands of voters calling their senators and congressmen, we will get some attention,” Alvarez said.

The local and national efforts must also be complemented by international support, he said.

“We are at the day and age when we should be partners with the U.S. and not anything below, which is the kind of relationship that we have with the U.S. now. We do not control much.”
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