|from:||Henry K.O. Norman email@example.com|
|to:||“Doria M. Rosen” <RosenDM@state.gov>|
|date:||Mon, Oct 22, 2012 at 3:47 PM|
|subject:||Yap State Government Brief Dated 2012-10-17|
Esteemed Ambassador Rosen,
My name is Henry Norman, resident of Yap Islands from 1999 to 2006. I write to you in the hope that you would clarify a statement, alleged to have been made by you during a recent official visit to Yap State, FSM.
The statement was made public in a Yap State Government Brief, posted on the official Yap State Government web site (www.yapstategov.org). The full brief in question can be accessed at http://yapstategov.org/News/10-2012/10-17-12.htm.
What the “Chinese investors” (the Exhibition & Travel Group(ETG) is proposing for Yap is the following (I am only listing the most “eye-popping” items):
· Extending the Yap airport to accommodate Boeing 747/Airbus A380 aircraft
· Extending the Colonia port facilities to accommodate huge cruise liners
· Building 4,000 hotel rooms (10,000 rooms by 2020)
· Building several casinos (note: gambling is illegal in the State of Yap!)
· Building several 18-hole championship class golf courses
· Relocating entire villages, in order to make room for resorts
ETG predicts that this will attract 1,000,000 tourists per year (2015), and as many as 2,000,000 per year by 2020. They further predict that they will create “10,000 new jobs.” You have visited Yap. Can you envision this happening there?
The cost of all this is outright ridiculous: A similar, but muchsmaller development in the Bahamas is predicted to cost ~$3.5 billion. The logistics involved in Yap State would very likely push this ETG proposal to ~$5 billion (probably more!), all financed by the PRC (China Export-Import Bank). With, I would say, very slim hopes of ever turning a profit…
If they can employ 3,000 Yapese/FSM citizens is highly questionable, but assuming they do, this means that some 7,000 Chinese employees will have to be brought in, semi-permanently, to Yap. With some of these bringing family members, I see a future Chinatown housing 10,000+ people… Where? Imagine the social unrest that surely will follow such insanity?
With 2,000 daily (!) “wealthy highrollers” visiting Yap, with an ETG employee workforce/families of 10,000+, we’re looking at Yap State being trampled to oblivion by over 20,000 people… Most unable to communicate with the Yapese, most being ignorant of Yapese culture (where trespassing is a major no-no!)… Not to mention the threat to the pristine reef ecosystems, with the Chinese taste for shark fins and manta ray gill rakers…
And all this, the ETG representatives have the audacity to claim“will benefit the People of Yap State”… That it will bring“prosperity to all”… Please keep in mind that the total land area is ~40 square miles, and that the native population of Yap Proper is ~9,000…
It should be obvious that the proposed development has no anchorage in reality, unless one sees through the Chinese marketeer’s hyperbole… For over a year now, I have tried to inform the People of Yap what I see as really taking place:
· The airport will enable huge military aircraft to land
· The port will allow huge navy vessels to enter
· The mass of hotel rooms will be excellent troop dormitories
In short, and in my personal view: the PRC is brazenly proposing to turn Yap (a mere 600 miles south of two major U.S. Air Force and Navy bases!) into a military base!
The so called “Cooperative Investment Agreement” is really nothing of the sort: it is an agreement that gives the ETG a free hand to do whatever they like with and on Yap, and “the state” (actually, only the Governor and his directors, everybody else — including the legislative and judicial branches of government — have been completely shut out of the proceedings, with zero information given to the People of Yap State about this looming catastrophe) promises to make sure that laws and rules are changed to fit the ETG requirements!
Some of the information I have collected to date is attached, for your information. Please take the time to peruse my “reality check” document! If you should want to know more, I have collected quite a lot.
So, in closing: The subject Yap State Brief states that:
“The Councils raised a question concerning an issue being circulated around in the communities that relation between the US and FSM governments could weaken if Yap accepts ETG to bring in its investment. In her respond,<sic!> the Ambassador said the US is not against the Chinese Investment in Yap, in fact Yap has made the right choice to sign the Investment Agreement with ETG.”
Are these really your words, Ambassador Rosen? And, since the U.S. State Department has offloaded COFA issues to the DOI “Office of Insular Affairs,” do they even know about this clandestine encroachment of U.S. controlled territory in the Western Pacific?
Independent Researcher (Retired Systems Analyst)
The response from Ambassador Rosen (received earlier today):
I regret any confusion resulting from my comments while I was in Yap. I hope the following statements make my position clear.
- The Ambassador was misquoted. We regret any misunderstanding.
- The US welcomes FSM efforts to attract legitimate investors, foreign and domestic, and encourages the FSM to reform its macroeconomic regimes to improve its overall business climate.
- As for the proposed investment in Yap, the U.S. is not opposed to legitimate investors and investments that would provide long-term benefits to the people of Yap. Investment proposals should be open and transparent.
Ambassador to the Federated States of Micronesia
Embassy of the United States of America
P.O Box 1286
Pohnpei, FM 96941
Tel: (691) 320-2187
Fax: (691) 320-2186
This email is UNCLASSIFIED