Talk:Kwajalein Atoll

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Validity of Content[edit]

Regarding: "never been covered with any significant nuclear fallout"

At the very least, the German cruiser Prinz Eugen and the American battleship Pennsylvania have been sunk at or off the Atoll itself, and while not exactly nuclear fallout, they are in fact nuclear debris. William R Wade (talk) 16:26, 3 January 2009 (UTC)

Map Issues[edit]

The map should be photoshopped to cover actual names of the islands--nixie 04:06, 9 Mar 2005 (UTC)

SpaceX[edit]

Perhaps it should be mentioned that SpaceX uses the island as one of their launch sites. Falcon 1 will make its maiden flight in mid December --User:subzero788 16:17, 7 December 2005 (UTC)

done--Duk 20:14, 7 December 2005 (UTC)

Largest Island[edit]

The article says the largest island in the atoll is Kwajalein but later it says it's Ebadon. Which is it? Papercrab 20:19, 1 September 2006 (UTC)

Kwajalein is the largest Island in the Atoll. Ebandon (Ebeye) is the most populated land mass in the world. Ebeye is only 1/3 the size of Kwaj, housing around 15,000 people. Kwajalein houses around 1,903 people.

The article indicates Roi-Namur is the second largest island in the Atoll and later identifies Ebadon as the second largest. Roi and Namur were separate islands connected by a largely man-made causeway. E. H. Bryan, Jr., in his Guide to Place Names in the Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands (Honolulu: Bernice P. Bishop Museum, 1971), gives an area (in square miles) of .235 for Roi, .125 for Namur, and .050 for Enirigirukku, a "connecting sandspit". Man-made additions to these joined islands has increased their collective area to 1.10 square miles. Ebadon, in the northwest corner of the Atoll, has an area of .75 square miles. The island of Kwajalein, originally .7 square miles is, as a result of man-made additions, now 1.28 square miles.

Confusion of Islands[edit]

Obviously there's some confusion here. Ebadon and Ebeye are absolutely different islands. Ebadon is in the far northwest corner of the atoll; Ebeye (properly spelled Epja in Marshallese) is located in the southeast tip, near Kwajalein islet. Yes, Ebeye is often said to be the most populated land mass in the world. Roi and Namur are adjoined islands, which makes Ebadon the second-largest after Kwajalein. Betweener 06:46, 14 July 2007 (UTC)

Indigenous People[edit]

What about the indigenous people of Kwajalein? I heard some were still around as recently as a few decades ago. I also heard they had a matriarchal culture.


Yes, they do have a matriarchal culture, I lived out there recently and it was still this way.


No, it's not matriarchal; it's matrilineal. In other words, land passes through one's mother, through a rather complex system of inheritance of clan and family known as bwij and jowi. Status, in general, passes through one's father as well. In general Marshallese customs, particularly through the influence of colonialism and Christianity, favor a patriarchal form of leadership, but land tenure has always passed through the matriline.

What is meant above by indigenous people of Kwajalein "still being around" as recently as a few decades ago? They're not only "still around;" Marshallese people are in charge of their own independent republic, the Republic of the Marshall Islands, in which Kwajalein is situated, the Marshall Islands is at least 95% indigenously populated. The population of the Marshallese people in general (living in diaspora, mostly in Hawaii and parts of the continental United States, as in Springdale, Arkansas and in parts of California, etc.) is close to 60,000 people worldwide, as of 2007. In Kwajalein Atoll, there are at least 13,000 Marshallese people versus only about 2,000 Americans who live on the installations there. However, if you're talking about "purely" indigenous "Kwajalein People," meaning Marshallese people who have original land rights to Kwajalein through their matriline or through designation by a chief (irooj), yes, a significant part of the population of Kwajalein Atoll and other parts of the Marshall Islands is also made up of people who have land rights at Kwajalein or a combination of land affiliations with dozens of other atolls and islands.

Map Request[edit]

A locator map is needed to show the position with respect to the continents of the Earth. -- Beland 18:38, 22 March 2007 (UTC)

Done. Kmusser 14:15, 10 September 2007 (UTC)

Korean workers[edit]

A recent deletion pointed out that someone had gone through at some point in time to ensure that Korean workers had their due. Sometimes a bit WP:UNDUE! I restored the deletion but had to admit that editing might need a more even hand.Student7 (talk) 12:01, 29 August 2009 (UTC)

I disagree that the article is "over Koreaned." If anything the histories of Oceania during Japanese times, especially in Kiribati and the Marshalls, completely ignore the presence of Korean laborers. I am an American professor of Pacific and Japanese history, with no bias toward Korea; however I contributed to adding this Korean content and am also the one who made the deletion to my own text, in consideration of the overall flow of the text. However, it was not because I believe there is too much information about Korean workers. 11,000 Korean workers in total were conscripted in Micronesia alone; there were tens of thousands more who were sent to the Philippines and other sites throughout the South Pacific and Southeast Asia. Those Koreans were joined by scores of other conscripted laborers from Taiwan and other Japanese colonial or occupied sites, but in the specific context of Kwajalein Atoll, aside from a handful of Okinawans, Koreans were by far the largest and most significant "invisible" group. It is not overemphasizing or biasing any view of history to re-acknowledge these Koreans--not to mention Marshallese and other Micronesians-- in the larger history, which has typically been told from an American or Japanese perspective. Both American and Japanese histories refer to "the Japanese" versus "the Americans" with little to no acknowledgement of subjugated people who were lumped into those larger groups against their will.Betweener (talk) 01:19, 21 October 2009 (UTC)

21st Century History, Current U.S. Military Uses and Lend Lease Dispute sections[edit]

These three sections seem to have significant overlap and could probably be combined or at least rewritten in some way that would make it clearer and more concise. The section on the lend lease dispute in particular seems to be longer than necessary. --125.60.227.202 (talk) 23:47, 4 April 2011 (UTC)

Perhaps true.
The land lease subsection seems well-written. Maybe it has grown too long for this article. If we fork it now, it has to be summarized here.
Once someone straightens out History, maybe it should be forked with a summary here. Is Land Lease in the right place by itself? It could save maintenance later if we come up with the right answer! Student7 (talk) 20:47, 6 April 2011 (UTC)

Railroad[edit]

The islands were once connected by a railroad built by, I think, the Japanese. This doesn't seem to be reflected here. It was destroyed during the battle and the remnants either buried or removed. Student7 (talk) 18:35, 10 June 2011 (UTC)

Battle description pov[edit]

Part of the battle description reads:

"Of the 8,782 Japanese personnel[17] deployed to the atoll (including Korean laborers), it has been argued that only 2,200 were combat trained. Nevertheless, Japanese resistance was strong and resilient, although the Japanese troops were outnumbered by tens of thousands of American troops."

For starters, there were 7,800 dead or so, indicating that a goodly number of the 8,782 actually fought. There is no indication how much training the division fighting them on the American side had. For some, it was their first time holding a rifle in battle! So not all of them were that greatly trained either.

I don't know about the "been argued" anyway. It isn't really explained or attributed.

Outnumbering your opponent by 3:1 or 4:1 is the classic manner of attack that will result in a victory. Anything much short of that will often result in defeat. So "being outnumbered by tens of thousands" would be reasonable.

Fighting "strong"ly is to be expected when you have no means of retreat, a gun in your hand and a leader who says he will shoot you if you don't fight! Also, a person is motivated by the fact that he might repulse the enemy. Each side hated the other.

Anyway, this summary seems quite pov to me. It was a heated battle, but it is reported in a somewhat pov fashion rather than npov, IMO. Student7 (talk) 00:14, 1 February 2012 (UTC)

Korean laborers[edit]

This sentence:

"This suggests that these Koreans died for the sake of Japan, in fact, they were forced laborers."

just isn't sitting right with me. I know that many Korean laborers in the Japanese military were conscripts. I know Korea has legitimate grievances against Japan for its treatment during the colonial era. But this seems a little too much like an editorializing snark. --Yaush (talk) 17:57, 10 June 2013 (UTC)

Agree. rm final sentence. Possibly the current last sentence needs tweaking as well. Thanks. Student7 (talk) 22:36, 16 June 2013 (UTC)
I've edited that paragraph to reflect that the Koreans were "forced laborers", not merely "laborers" (which implies they were paid for their labor and free to leave, which they were most definitely not). Many sources actually use the term "slave laborers", since they were effectively imprisoned, brutalized and made to do hard labor by the army which had conquered and occupied their country. The line about the Japanese honoring them can stay, since it doesn't really make any POV statement one way or the other, but not clarifying the "forced" part is a bit like calling the Korean comfort women "sex workers" instead of "forced sex workers" or "sex slaves". Court Appointed Shrub (talk) 10:04, 2 October 2013 (UTC)

POV and WP:SYNTH issues[edit]

I've removed the entire subsection "Trust Territory under the United Nations", as it was nothing but a full paragraph of uncited WP:POV pro-Japanese diatribe about "US misconceptions" about the history of the Marshall Islands, with some WP:SYNTH thrown in from a telephone company pamphlet and an unrelated, inaccessible grad school dissertation. I examined it to see if any of it was worth saving, and none of it was. It didn't even mention the article topic, for pete's sake. Court Appointed Shrub (talk) 09:37, 2 October 2013 (UTC)

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