Resist Pohakuloa military expansion

SOURCE: Shannon Rudolph (
SUBHEAD: From the mountains of Afghanistan to the slopes of Mauna Kea, Empire is endless war.

Image above: Seastallion helicopter in live fire exercise at Pohakuloa range during RIMPAC 2010. From (

 IMO, the military on Hawai'i Island has been a terrible tenant and land steward. Do we really want them expanding their foot print on the island? Please forward. Do you agree with the modernization plans for the Pohakuloa Training Area? (Scroll down on right 1. Click here: Big Island Weekly - Read > News WHT Poll 2. Click here: WHT- Poll Results The Army is proposing adding helicopter training on Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa.

Should the plan be approved? Yes. We need to give our military the best possible training, and those mountains are an ideal location for that.  

(22 Votes, 56%) Maybe, but with some restrictions on how much noise the training can generate.
(6 Votes, 15%) Absolutely not! The Army needs to get off those mountains immediately.
(11 Votes, 28%) Y

our comments needed NOW to keep Army helicopters off of Mauna Kea by Monday, 24 January 2011. Send to: Your comments also needed regarding Army expansion at Pohakuloa by Monday, 7 February 2011. Send to: Please write short comments - as simple as saying you don't want ANY thing that makes dust on the mountain until we have professional, independent testing for depleted uranium. Mahalo!

Target Pohakuloa

SUBHEAD: What is happening to Pohakuloa is symptomatic of the wars that have become permanent fixtures of these islands.  

By William Cole on 22 January 2011 for Star Advertiser -

Pohakuloa has become the target of massive military expansion since 2001. First the Stryker brigade expansion led to a 23,000 acre land grab by the Army. In 2006 the Army bought 23,000 acres from Parker Ranch for military maneuver training for $31.5 million, and it has spent $33.6 million for a Stryker armored vehicle “battle area complex” expected to open in 2012 at a separate spot at Pohakuloa. But that facility is mainly for Stryker gunnery, officials said. Then the Air Force expanded its aerial bombardment training to use 2000 lb dummy bombs dropped from stealth B-2 bombers. Then the Marine Corps expansion.

Now the Army “upgrade”of the range and proposed high altitude helicopter training on the slopes of Mauna Kea. The recent announcement that the Army is abandoning live-fire training in Makua on O’ahu after more than 60 years is hardly cause for celebration in light of the shift of major military training activity to Lihu’e (Schofield range on O’ahu) and Pohakuloa on Hawai’i island.

Pohakuloa has been subjected to intense military activity: Pohakuloa has 153 ranges, including the 566-acre housing and base operations area, and numerous firing ranges directed at a central 51,000-acre ordnance impact area. Army soldiers, Hawaii-based and transiting Marines, and the Hawaii National Guard are among the ground forces that regularly train at Pohakuloa, officials said.

Artillery, mortars, rockets and missiles are fired at Pohakuloa, and Air Force bombers drop dummy bombs on the range. Army expansion plans include helicopter training on Mauna Kea, outside the military base: The high-altitude helicopter training plan seeks to standardize and make an annual requirement of similar exercises that were held at Pohakuloa in 2003, 2004 and 2006, a change that reflects new Army doctrine, according to documents.

 The 25th Combat Aviation Brigade at Schofield would use the Mauna Kea and Mauna Loa training as it too prepares for deployment to Afghanistan, where operations routinely exceed 10,000 feet. Six existing landing zones would be used for approach, landings and takeoff at elevations above 8,000 feet under high winds, extreme temperatures and during night operations. The training was examined in an environmental assessment separate from the infantry plans. A draft finding of “no significant impact” was released in December. Helicopter training hours at Pohakuloa would be increased by 30 percent to 6,000 total hours based on 300 to 400 aviators receiving the training, the Army said. People will resist:

 The Army faces opposition to the Pohakuloa plan from some Big Island residents, including peace activist Jim Albertini. Albertini said in a statement following a public meeting held by the Army on the modernization plan that he is concerned about depleted uranium left over from a 1960s weapon system used at Pohakuloa. “There has been plenty of money over the years for military buildup but very little funding for military cleanup. It’s time to change those priorities,” Albertini said.

“The bottom line is this: Hawaii residents don’t want the U.S. military training to do to others what the U.S. has already done to Hawaii — overthrow and occupy its government and nation and contaminate its air, land, water, people, plants and animals with military toxins.” The destruction of Pohakuloa, Makua, Kaho’olawe is not simply a result of “training”. What is happening to Pohakuloa is symptomatic of the wars that have become permanent fixtures of these islands.

It exposes the Big Lie of Empire: “Pax Americana” – the American Peace. From the mountains of Afghanistan to the slopes of Mauna Kea, Empire is endless war. As Ann Wright recently shared about her trip to Afghanistan, Afghan Youth Peace Volunteers have engaged in several global call-in days. People from around the world having conversations with youth from a remote part of Afghanistan.

 For those who still justify the war in Afghanistan and the military training in Hawai’i in preparation for that war, listen to these youth: .

No comments :

Post a Comment