Monday, February 19, 2007

Ramping Up

Our newly rediscovered Guam is getting another work out as it prepares for a larger role in projecting American power in the western Pacific:

"This exercise highlights GuamÂ’s strategic value and will show the world that we are prepared to defend our island and our nation from any threat of terrorism," Governor Felix Comacho said in his State of the Island address.

Guam and neighbouring US territories including the Northern Mariana Islands are considered by the US as strategic locations in the Asia-Pacific region.

Guam is home to one of the largest US military naval bases in the region and 8,000 marines will soon be relocated there from Japan.

The island, with a population of 170,000, is banking on the US military buildup to bail it out of its economic woes.

The US and Japan are spending 15 billion dollars on the relocation of the marines from Japan, which is expected to further boost Washington's military strength in the Asia-Pacific.

Guam will stand astride any Chinese attempts to push their sea frontier east.

And nothwithstanding the deal with North Korea to eliminate their nuclear programs (which I am refraining from praising or condemning until I see more), we perhaps are not so sure that the Pillsbury Nuke Boy won't try to earn some cash by selling what they have learned thus far.