This is the 3rd day of the five-day long campaign. Anticipating the emty trucks coming to move the earth and sand stored within the pier ground to cargo ships, the protestors in large number gathered from early in the morning. Those who came from all over Japan for the campaign, 120 people, got together to unify their spirit on the previous day and showed their power of solidarity
5:30 a.m. In front of the pier in Awa, 10 citizens gathered and got ready to meet the trucks. Also at the pier in Shiokawa, 5 citizens gathered.
6:30 a.m. In front of the pier in Awa, the number of protestors increased to 50.
7:00 a.m. Empty trucks started arriving one by one, and 8 trucks lined up in the right-turn lane to reach the pier. The number of protestors has increased to 80 by this time, and they completely blocked the entrance to the peir. The confrontation between the trucks and the citizens started, and the trucks could not move.
7:50 a.m. Four policemen from Nago City Police Dept. arrived. But the riot police force did not, probably because they have not yet returned from their duties in Tokyo for the enthronement ceremony.
8:00 a.m. Several members of the traffic duty policemen arrived. After examining the situation for a while, the police ordered eight truck drivers to return, and they did. The protestors cheered. “We did it!” “We stopped the construction!”
10:00 a.m. The number of citizens kept increasing to 180 people at the peak including 12 members of the canoe team. The spirit was high with speaches and songs in front of the pier.
Being afraid if trucks would return, the protestors took turns to stand in watch for trucks throughout the night.
Being deeply concerned with the the recent typhoon disaster, one of the captains of the protest boats, Mr. Kuwashiro Takaaki, decided to visit a disaster stricken area in Chiba Prefecture as a volunteer. The protestors on the sea and in front of the gate to Camp Schwab collected contribution in his support. Having learned that trucks are needed to transport wet furnitures and tatami matresses to be discarded, Okinawa Peace Support donated a used small truck. Shipping cost of the truck and cost of living at the volunteer site should be covered by the constribution. On the truck door, “Let’s move forward!” is painted. One of the female contributors told me with tears.
“I do not know what to say. Dealing with Henoko situation is streneous enough, yet he has a power left to extend his concern with the typhoon victims. Okinawa has been suffering so much that we understand how others feel when they lost their house and families.