Fleet Activities Yokosuka Naval Base, Japan
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Fleet Activities Yokosuka Naval Base in Yokosuka, Japan US Military Bases in Japan
Located in Tokyo Bay, in the immediate proximity of the Japanese capital, Fleet Activities Yokosuka is said to be the most important military facility operated by the United States of America in Japan, judging from a geographical and strategical point of view. It is also the widest facility in the Pacific area. The place is commanded by Captain David Owen since the summer of 2011 and under the jurisdiction of the United States Navy. It covers a little under 600 acres. It is a co-base operated by the USA, but under the Japanese laws.
The primary mission of Fleet Activities Yokosuka is to support all the units in the Pacific area, as long as they belong to the United States of America or the allied countries. A major role is played by the Japanese Naval Forces as well, which are extremely important and dominant in the area. Another major force around is the 7-th Fleet, which is responsible for running COMLOG WESTPAC. The mission implies administrative and logistical support. Another important objective for the installation is to maintain a high quality of life for the troops deployed there. Therefore, the recreational support is extremely important. The importance of this installation is obvious, so the facilities on site must raise to the expectations.
Prior to becoming one of the largest ports in Japan, the place was nothing but a native fishing village. The American forces already knew about this place and constantly suggested that Japan should be open to trade contracts and agreements. In order to do that, the Japanese asked the French for help. Yokosuka was picked from a lot of other places. The construction was over in the 19-th century.
During the 20-th century, the base at Yokosuka became one of the most important facilities of the Imperial Japanese Navy. It is the place where some of the most famous Japanese machines were built, including Yamashiro, Shokaku or Hiryu. These are just some of the names that scared the entire world during World War II. The base reached its peak during that war. It was a very crowded place. More than 40,000 inhabitants were working on 1,1 square kilometers.
In the summer of 1945, the base officials surrendered in front of the American forces. The base was taken over by the US Marines, the US Navy and the British forces. In the end, only the US Navy remained on site. Soon after being taken over, the installation was renamed to Fleet Activities Yokosuka. Some of the facilities on site were modified according to the Americans’ needs.
The recent history doesn’t include too many major events. Since 2008, the base can brag with the only aircraft powered with nuclear energy in the United States Navy – USS George Washington. The past few years also marked the history of Fleet Activities Yokosuka with a few tragic incidents, including a couple of crimes performed by two American troops. This is why the installation is extremely restricted now, only to prevent other similar accidents.