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USMC to move 2,500 Marines in Guam by 2021 42005161.

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USMC to move 2,500 Marines in Guam by 2021
The US Marine Corps is planning to move 2,500 Marines in Guam by 2021, according to Cmdr. Daniel Schaan, Director of the Joint Guam Programme Office Forward. They will relocate from Okinawa, as part of the US-Japan agreement to reduce US military presence in Okinawa, signed in 2006. The total number of the Marines moving to Guam is 5,000, with the rest relocating there by 2026.
USMC to move 2,500 Marines in Guam
Marines assaulting Andersen AFB during an exercise in Guam (Photo: USMC)

The bilateral agreement assumes the division of the relocation cost between the countries. Of the total USD8.7 billion required it, Japan would pay for USD3 billion. The funds would cover the construction costs of new infrastructure and housing for the Marines and some of their dependents.

As of late April 2016, the House Armed Services Committee had authorized an additional USD250 million to be used for military projects such as new housing buildings; upgrades in the power system; new munitions storage and new maintenance hangars for the Global Hawk unmanned air systems.

The relocation of the USMC force has caused reactions on behalf of the population of Guam and nearby islands, leading to legal actions against the US government’s plans to expand its military presence and the limits of the live-fire training grounds.

Guam is part of the Mariana Islands archipelago, which consists of 15 small volcanic islands. Only four of them are inhabited, as the rest are miniscule with steep ground. Despite their small size, some of the larger ones, such as Tinian and Pagan, are being used as live-fire training ground of the US forces in the Pacific.

The arrival of more troops would be an additional heavy burden to the natural environment, their economy and their inhabitants’ daily lives or the prospect of returning to their homes in the case of the indigenous Chamorro who lived in Pagan island. These people were evacuated after the Mount Pagan volcanic eruption in 1981. Although they are prohibited from returning to their homes for security reasons, some of them have defied the restrictions and returned.



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