The Far East Network Okinawa: Impact, Influence, And Personal Stories From The First 50 Years
The American Forces Network (AFN) began during World War II to boost the morale of troops serving overseas, and to that end, military broadcasters at AFN Okinawa have served as the link to home for troops stationed on the island since 1945. This research captures a pivotal time in the history of broadcasting through the memories of military veterans, their families, and the Okinawan people. Interviews with listeners reveal they tuned in for the music, friendly voices, timely weather reports, and American perspective. Military veterans describe the experience of broadcasting as exciting and uniquely challenging, while government reports and archives document changes at the station. The Far East Network (FEN) Okinawa, as it was known for most of the first 50 years, directly influenced the people and culture on the island and left a lasting impact on those who listened in or worked at the station. By capturing these stories from the formative years of broadcasting with a military perspective, we gain a greater understanding of the human experience and what it was like to be part of this world before the Internet changed the way we communicate and consume media.