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U.S. Navy Completes Promotional Manga for Distribution

posted on by Mikhail Koulikov
200-page comic book will introduce Japanese residents to aircraft carrier

Last year, ANN reported that the United States Navy was planning to create a manga-style book to explain its mission to Japanese audiences. Stars and Stripes, the newspaper for overseas members of the United States Armed Forces, has confirmed that approximately 30,000 individual copies of the book have now been printed. Entitled CVN-73, the manga is meant to promote the arrival of the aircraft carrier USS George Washington at the U.S. Navy base in Yokosuka, Japan. ("CVN-73" is this carrier's hull number.) The volume's 200 pages focuses on Jack Ohara, a fictional Japanese-American sailor on his first tour of duty aboard an aircraft carrier, and his mentor Petty Officer 1st Class Elly Benton.

The "GW," which is due to start its deployment in August, will be the first American nuclear-powered naval vessel to be permanently based in Japan. Japanese citizens' groups have raised opposition to having a nuclear-powered carrier based in the country, but the manga only indirectly notes the carrier's power source by saying "the heart of the GW has a 50-year life span and doesn't need refueling." Kaiji Kawaguchi (Eagle, Zipang), an artist who is not involved with CVN-73, created a manga called The Silent Service from 1988 to 1996; in this politically charged story, a nuclear-powered submarine under a Japanese captain declares independence from both Japan and the United States.

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