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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0132, 1945-12-21.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-0428

call-number: DS801 .S82

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NO. 428 DATE 21 Dec 45


ITEM 1 Make Haste In Casting Off Old Ways - Mainichi Shimbun - 18 Dec 45. Translator: J. Wada.
Full Translation:
JAPAN must cast off its old ways and drastically rejuvenate herself in her modern thought, culture, custom, and social structure, all of which have been formed and entrenched through the three eras, MEIJI, TAISHŌ and SHŌWA. It is not too much to say that all activities of modern .JAPAN have resulted from militarism. JAPAN must make a new start as a perfectly civilized country. She had many things of which she might well have bean proud. However, we have come to realize, now, if too late, that some of them were not founded on democracy and others lacked scientific spirit.
At least, if she should rise again from the bitter actualities of defeat, JAPAN must cast out all its past. Toward that objective, all leaders of militaristic JAPAN, as we have often insisted in this column, should make way for younger leaders, whether their war responsibilities are direct or not. The social and economic structure, thought, culture, and other phases should be regarded, again, from a new angle and should be changed. Of course, the casting off of old ways will cause much damage and friction, but it should overlook immediate interests. In the process of the operation, we can find the first ray of hope for the revival of JAPAN.
Now JAPAN cannot be established without labor pains. New JAPAN must be sired by the Nation itself. However, old men stick too closely to the old. Veterans cannot forget their better days. Revolutions and renovations have never been accomplished by old people. Accordingly, all leaders in all fields and classes, political, official and civil, should make a wholesale voluntary retirement, thus enabling new leaders to take their places and make drastic reforms in thought, customs, and institutions.
To our great regret, Japanese politics pursues only Allied directives on every problem. This is only because the Cabinet, political circles and official circles still continue to have old leaders who are sticklers for the old and are unable to take any decisive renovating measures. This time, we have received a new order for the separation of Shinto from the State. This directive is very scientific since JAPAN must start along democratic lines.
This measure will never mean oppression of freedom of religion. If Shinto comes into decadence by this separation, it was nothing more than a coerced religion. In relation to this proble, a re-examination

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EDITORIAL SERIES: 132 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
of Japanese history is proposed. This is a task which should be started at once, because a new scientific history of JAPAN is a prerequisite for her rejuvenation. The Emperor system and all other problems to be considered in relation with the past require a scientific history of JAPAN for their solution.
Not only the separation of Shinto from the State but also the laws of land and labor unions were given to the Nation by Supreme Headquarters and not by the Government. This shamefulness has been caused by the delay in casting off the old personnel in officialdom. Under the kind of situation which the Nation has not experienced, it would not be necessary in the least that the premier should have the experience of premiership.
In this connection, Prince KONOE can be construed as having done his part in casting off the old ways of JAPAN by his suicide. He has been one of the highest commanders of JAPAN for the past ten years. He played a bright role in the abolition of political parties and in deciding our policy toward CHINA. Though we can see his attitude against the war by the address which he presented to the Emperor when he resigned his third premiership, Prince KONOE did not seem to be conscious of his war responsibility for some time after the war. However, the enlargement of his responsibility for the Imperial Family and public opinion made him reflect on his conduct. Be that as it may, the death of Prince KONOE has given a new incentive and implication to the large scale operation of changing JAPAN. At this time, some politicians who believe themselves irresponsible and many politicians who are eager to evade war responsibility should be in deep meditation not to impede the reform movement.
The presidency problem of the Progressive Party should be considered in this light. It is very regrettable that the Party should seem to be casting off its old coat, only to put on another old coat. Since it is the principal party, why can't the Progressive propose a younger member to be president? Backing a young party-member of influence is a reform of the political party.
ITEM 2 To the Citizens - Asahi Shimbun - 18 Dec 45. Translator: K. Ketel.
We farmers are resolved to prevent starvation, in cities and to provide the Government with agricultural products. The only thing we demand is that we be permitted to keep enough rice. Those, who are able to sell rice for the black market are relatively few. At one time, during the war, we had to contribute an unusual amount of wheat. To fulfil this demand we bought the wheat which was lacking from our friends at black market price. Such was the situation we encountered during the war.
Unconscious of the real feedings of the farmers, the citizens often express their bitterness against us. Even if some of the farmers act badly, don't think that all farmers do likewise. Tenant farmers have no surplus rice which they can sell on the black market. In our districts, only landowners and yeomen transact black market dealings. I heard complaints that the farmers would get too wealthy. Of course, compared to the living standards of farmers 20 years ago, the farmers lead a far more comfortable life at present.
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 132 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
A citizen is said to have uttered: "If I die, I will die in a farmer's garden." Aren't we all Japanese, belonging to one family? Let us not die altogether but let us overcome the burden laid upon the cities at this critical time.
The only way which JAPAN can escape the starvation falling her is by the closest co-operation and understanding between the urban and rural people. Hardships can be overcome only by helping one another.
(KODAKA, Naruji, SAITAMA-Ken Agriculture)
Complaints of a Farmer's Wife
In JAPAN all family members take part in agricultural management. Therefore, more than half of the farm labor is done by women. How many citizens have taken into consideration the poor situation of the farmer? If the agrarian woman had to care for household matters and children, like the lady in the city, the production of farm products would drop to half. Regardless of the weather, rural women have to go out on their rice fields, leaving behind their weeping babies.
How ridiculous are the fixed prices for wheat and rice? Even in the period of free economy we couldn't buy any dresses. We went through those times with coarse food and worse clothing. What can you buy with the money you get for one hag of rice furnished the Government, this price which is produced grain by grain with our hardships?
During the war we were satisfied with porridge made out of wheat and pumpkin, and patiently tolerated the most simple foods only because we ware determined to win. Now the war has ended in defeat. We are trying to forget all the pains and hardships we have suffered during the war and we don't want our compatriots to starve.
I want to make a petition, to all ordinary consumers, to read as follows: "Please don't make bitter complaints against the farmers. Realize their true conditions and try to put yourself in their place."
(KUMAGAYA, Aiko, SHIZUOKA-Ken Agriculture)
Confiscation of Farmland
The Diet is going to approve the bill which will reform the agrarian land system. Landowners with less than five chobu of land are already taking away fields from tenants, stating that they want to become yeomen. They are impelled by the desire to posses, although they have no agricultural implements or cattle. Tenant farmers are saying that they won't give up their tenant rights even if their fields go to waste. The Government has not foreseen that, there are many farmers who grieve inwardly because of the way in which their fields are confiscated.
(YAMANO, Koichi, IBARAGI-Ken, Farming)
Since the Government has taken the problem of the farmland amendment in hand, landowners with less than five chobu have started to take away fields from tenant farmers by saying that they want to do their
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 132 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
own work in order to guarantee their own food. Tenant farmers cannot till the fields since landowners state: "You have to give back all the fields, or al least half of them. The landowner has the right to keep five chobu of land and even the government has recognized that. Will the Government leave this situation unattended?
(TANAKA, Sinichi, YAMAGATA-Ken, agriculture)
ITEM 3 Prince KONOE's Tragic Death - Yomiuri Hochi - 18 Dec 45. Translator: S. Fukuda.
Full Translation:
The life of Prince KONOE has ended tragically. When it was suggested by General MacARTHUR that he reform the Imperial Constitution he thought it was based upon trust, because he did not admit war guilt. Lesser men than the Prince would have presented a comical appearance and character in such a case.
So far as KONOE was concerned, the work had to he done under tragic circumstances. In life and in death he was destined to be the hero of a HAMLET-like tragedy. He was an intellectual. Not only was he highly nervous, weak-willed and gentle, but also slightly arrogant and self-important because of his noble family and lineage. Being an unbalanced character made him hesitant and indecisive. He liked to hear views of men from various circles, such as the military, political, diplomatic and. economic. The localization policy of the CHINA Incident developed counter to his expectations and be objected to JAPAN'S attitude towards CHIANG KAI SHEK. He was reluctantly involved in the Tri-partite Alliance. For all his desperate efforts in Japanese-American negotiations, he was forced to follow the TOJO military clique.
To organize the Imperial Rule Assistance along lines similar to the Nazi system was not his original intentions. This nation-wide political party designed to check the military clique became corrupted from beginning to end, only because its very inception was wrong. Moreover, public opinion reveals that, next to TOJO, he was politically most responsible for the war and, in general, an object of the people's resentment.
However, playing the major role in the democratization of the Constitution he was unconscious of inconsistency, for he didn't regard himself as a war criminal. He may well be said to have been a man of indecisive character. The land of JAPAN was itself the stage for his tragedy.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0132, 1945-12-21.
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