Unexploded bomb diffused in Uebaru: “WWII legacy lingers”

Unexploded bomb diffused in Uebaru: “WWII legacy lingers”

In Uebaru, Naha City on the morning of Dec. 16, a member of the Self Defense-Force explained how unexploded ordnances are dealt with.

December 18, 2018 Ryukyu Shimpo


Okinawa Urban Monorail suspended its service temporarily while an unexploded ordnance was diffused in Uebaru, Naha City during the morning hours on Dec.

16th. At each station, signs were posted near the turnstiles to notify passengers of the service disruption and attendants were busy explaining the situation to customers.

The shutdown largely affected those who were out and about on Sunday: Local customers and tourists unaware of the service suspension seemed confounded and were forced to take a bus or taxi instead, while some opted to walk or bike to their destinations.


Hapu Yamane, a student at Naha City’s Kinjo Junior High School, arrived Oroku station round 9:40 that morning.

The eighth-grader had planned to meet a friend at Asato station, but due to the service suspension, had no other choice but to go home and, “ask my mom to drive me instead.” The frustrated 14-year-old also said of the unexploded ordnance, “it’s scary to think that it’s so close by.”


Iraha Junior High School student Ryo Ooshiro, biked from Tomigusuku City to Oroku station with two friends and planned on taking the monorail to Omoromachi station.

“I had no idea an unexploded bomb was found or that the monorail service was shutdown.”

The 15-year-old decided to bike to Omoromachi instead.


Ryoma Hoshi, 34, and Mariko Yamashina, 35, were visiting from Tokyo.

They were able to catch a monorail headed to Naha airport at around 9:20 a.m., just before service was cut off. Hoshi said that finding an unexploded ordnance is “unthinkable in Tokyo.”

Yamashina was also surprised, and said she “realized the legacy of war still lingers.”


It was just a while ago on Dec. 9th that another unexploded ordnance was diffused in a residential area of Uebaru.

According to the local residents, the site used to be a hospital.

Kiyoki Toyama, who has lived in the area for 60 years, seemed uneasy.

“It’s terrifying to think, what if the bomb had gone unnoticed during construction and exploded?” he said, as he evacuated. “I can’t believe that 73 years after the war, we still have unexploded bombs nearby.”


(English translation by T&CT and Monica Shingaki)


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