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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0043, 1945-12-02.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-0187

call-number: DS801 .S82

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NO. 187 Date: 2 Dec 45


ITEM 1 Premier's Speech Betrays Lack of Cognizance of the Current Situation - Yomiuri-Hochi - 29 Nov 45. Translator: K. Kawanabe.
Full Translation:
Much attention has been given to the Diet in anticipation of what Premier SHIDEHARA would say in his general administative speech made before the 89 Session of the Diet on 28 November. It added nothing to increase the nation's trust in the Government.
The speaker said "In our foreign relations we are incapacitated; we do not possess the substantial power to uphold and carry out our policies which we ourselves may believe to be just and equitable." Are there any people who have the same opinion? It is a clear fact in view of the post war situation that all directives issued by the Allied Forces are based on justice and fair play. Then, what is "the substantial power" that is wanting? The words mean nothing but the power of the military, of the big families and the bureaucrates at whose disappearance we are very happy.
He also said "JAPAN, having accepted the Potsdam Declaration, is obliged to remove all obstacles to the revival and development of democratic tendencies." Did the government, however, take voluntarily any revolutionary means prior to the directives of the Allied Forces? In the revision of the constitution, the taxation of war profits, etc. no initiative was taken by the Government. We are not considering the democratization as our duty but desire it from the bottom of our hearts.
In this respect the Government is far from satisfactory. All policies declared by the Premier, namely, efforts to import food, promotion of the agriculture, and relief for war victims, for our nationals overseas and for repatriates, lead to democracy. But it must be kept in mind that the first step toward the democratization in our country should be inquiry into the cause of the war.
Toward the end of his speech, the Premier stated for mere form's sake that War Inquiry Commissions has been set up in the Cabinet to probe the cause and actual conditions that brought on defeat. "Setting up a commission" has been the old means taken by the military and bureaucratic cabinet to shift responsibilities, and the present cabinet is resorting to it! It is useless to inquire into the cause and actual conditions that brought on defeat! The people and the whole world are calling to account the cause which induced the war and not the cause which brought the defeat.
It was very clear from the first that we'd lose the war under the despotic reign of the militarists and the bureaucrats. If it had

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EDITORIAL SERIES: 43 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
happened that we'd won, it would be the people who'd suffer most severely. In regard to the Commission, we have something more to say. The Government has again appointed former high-ranking officials as chief members of that Commission. The bureaucratic clique is composed of the upper structure of feudalism in JAPAN and may well be expected to be dissolved in the immediate future.
Now the military have been disarmed, and the big families have been destroyed. This appointment shows the anarchism of the Government. After all is said and done, the Premier's speech betrays lack of cognizance of the post war situation and makes the people consider how unfortunate it is to have such a Cabinet with which to tide over the tight situation.
ITEM 2 From the Diet - Yomiuri-Kochi - 29 Nov 45. Translator: T. Unayama.
Full Translation:
We saw Prime Minister Baron SHIDEHARA, Kijuro, on the rostrum after a lapse of fifteen years. His administrative speech, which took twenty-minutes, was brief and to the point, and the tone was very much like a lecture. If a chair of diplomatic history were created in a university, he would be the professor most fit for the post.
However, when he made a reply to the speech of SAITO, Takao, a member of the Progressive Party, he looked as if he were counterattacking. Sallying out, his face flushed, he raised his voice with the words "I have never said that the present representatives were chosen by the authorities, and that when the representatives chosen in the coming general election are recognized as unsuited to the will of the people, the Diet will be dissolved again. In short, the press release, which appeared as the Premier's talk in all papers at the time I was inaugurated, is full of mistakes."
If there had been mistakes in the press report, why did he not submit a correction at that time? When something goes wrong, the bureaucrats impute the crime to the mistakes of the papers. But we cannot believe that all the papers mistook a person's speech. This question should be transferred for negotiation between the cabinet and the reporters who were sent to the Premier's official residence.
The Prime Minister has not grown so old as was expected, but SAITO is out of date. The latter's argument on the constitution and democratic policy based on press clippings, does not meet this pressing social situation. The climax of his argument came when he openly stated Prince KONOE'S responsibility for the war. No one but he can speak so openly. Against this, Baron SHIDEHARA answered that he cannot agree to such a close inquiry into the responsibility, and took the edge off SAITO'S argument, saying moderately that he wants to simplify the means for those who spontaneously admit their responsibility. This is the difference in viewpoints of a critic and an actual politician.
The War Minister SHIMOMURA, Sadamu's, reply to SAITO'S argument on the development of militarism was a pathetic one. He, with his head drooping and keeping back his tears, said "I ask you a thousand pardons from the bottom of my heart". Then he asked sympathy for soldiers at large and bowed his head. There were persons among the members of the cabinet, on the floor and in the ladies' seats who wept with him in sympathy. SHIMOMURA had already taken off his uniform and was in a black sack-coat.
SAITO said, "we will hereafter in the Diet never see militaristic ministers again"; SHIMOMURA said, "the Army dissolves and has no means
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 43 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
to ask pardon. Why did not the militarists reform themselves earlier? In a way we feel lonely.
At any rate, discussions in the Diet have received. Not only in the period of TOJO but also in the period of KONOD, the Representatives' speeches were stopped. Moreover, the questioners on behalf of the parties were limited to a person or two. However in this Diet they compromised to send three questioners from the Progressive Party and one from each other party.
When resolutions and bills are introduced, many of them will appear on the rostrum in turns end activity of the committee is imaginable, nevertheless, the official building of the Diet having been saved from air raids, all Representatives being relics of the TOJO period, and every party being a mosaic work of old age, no impression of the new age is felt.
ITEM 3 The Limit of Students' Movements - Mainichi Shimbun - 29 Nov 45. Translator: K. Nagatani.
Full Translation:
Our educational institutions today have restored freedom after over ten years of military suppression, and at the same time our students are taking the initiative in educational democratization. Generally speaking, this tendency may well be favorably viewed by the people. However, we are very sorry to find that because of their poor knowledge of democracy, our student movements are likely to run to extremes.
Of course this tendency may be understood to be a temporary reaction against the post relentless pressure upon them. Accordingly we believe that in due course of time the present rather extreme movements by the students will converted to just and fair movements. Our student movements are concerned with those who will take important roles in the construction of a new JAPAN.
The fact that our universities are the source of our culture and civilzation, permits no indifference on the most of the general public in the matter. Students also should bear in mind that their movements are receiving general attention.
It is quite obvious today that up to now our educational principles have proved feudalistic and autocratic. "Moreover heads of some private universities often neglected the original mission of universities as educational institution and utilized university systems to gain profits. For example, some heads of Japanese private universities attempted to gain social prestige and make profits by students' base-boll games and other sports. Such detestable tends of the past should not be allowed to exist in schools of the future. In this light the student criticism of the management of universities or other schools may be justifiable or in some cases encouraged.
Nevertheless, constant student participation in school management makes for neglect of their duties as students. Students are not complete social men but are in the course of becoming so. This fact naturally gives e certain limit to student movements. In other words student movements should something different from those of the general public.
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 43 (Continued)
ITEM 3 (Continued)
In our country the general public as well as the students themselves have been accustomed to thinking that particular privileges should be granted to students. This must be considered reflectively by the students and the general public. The pressing problem facing our students today is how to manage their lives. Of course, this cannot he decided by students alone. But if the students do their utmost to solve the practical problems confronting them, it will mean some progress of student movements towards the democratization of schools.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0043, 1945-12-02.
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