Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Off the reservation

Ray is a white man. He is very WASPY and none too sharp. He made such a poor student at Princeton that his Admiral father pulled him out and forced him to serve in the Navy in Vietnam. Where have we heard this before?

Anyway he pulled himself together, married well, and found himself as an aide to Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld in the Bush Administration. He looks the part and has the resume of someone who can speak with some authority. Thus as a Senior Adviser at CSIS, Ray DuBois found himself talking about US base realignment at a May 15th CSIS forum and then to a Japanese reporter.

And bless his heart, although he spoke in the same program as Mike Green and Dick "hard power still has a place in Asia" Armitage, he clearly did not coordinate his message with them. Green and Armitage stay on message. Along with the Administration, they are determined to stick to the 2006 plan for base realignment.

Blithely, DuBois very rationally noted that the U.S. needs to be "a little bit more flexible" about where the U.S. Marine Corps' Futenma air station in Okinawa Prefecture should be relocated. DuBois then said. "I think we can be, not withstanding that there is a clear operational need for the Marine Corps to have their helicopter assets within close proximity to their infantry for troop training purposes."

DuBois continued that he was instructed to review a draft plan to build an airfield on a landfill off in Camp Schwab shortly after accompanying then Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld in his trip to Okinawa Prefecture in November 2003.

As an alternative, DuBois then proposed using Iejima, a small island which is near Okinawa that has a U.S. military airfield. "Not withstanding prior agreements, you've got to maintain a certain amount of flexibility," he observed.

Wow, Ray! You have a dugong in your future.