How badly do the Japanese people want to get rid of the U.S. Marine base in Okinawa? So much that Japan’s prime minister, Yukio Hatoyama, is facing calls to resign from within his own party after he reneged on his promise to move the base off the island. Opposition to the base is rooted in several incidents by servicemen, including the rape of a 12-year-old girl in 1995. Hatoyama has backtracked on his pledge to relocate the base off the island altogether, and instead now says he supports moving it to a different part of the island. Some Japanese commentators now say that Hatoyama, who has only served for eight months, will step down before July elections and become the fourth Japanese prime minister to resign in four years. He is scheduled to meet with leaders of his party, the Democratic Party of Japan, on Tuesday.
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