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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0188, 1945-12-31.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-0588

call-number: DS801 .S82

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No. 588 Date: 31 Dec 45


ITEM 1 Awaken the People - Provincial Newspaper Kahoku Shimpo (SENDAI) - 26 December 1945. Translator: I. Hotta.
Full Translation:
Conditions in our country are indeed deplorable now that severe winter has come. We should never make light of them. The six major problems are: 1. Scarcity of food. 2. Rise in prices. 3. Shortage of coal. 4. The crime wave. 5. The political vacumn. 6. Neglect of duty by officials, businessmen, and workers.
These conditions prove that the people have become completely dispirited. The Government and the leaders of our country lack the spirit to lead the people, the people have not regained faith in a government which deceived them during the war. The Diet which should act as the representative of the people has also disappoint us.
How can the people be saved? Isn't there any way to do away with irresponsibility and stimulate a new interest in the reconstruction of JAPAN? How are the people, to recover their skills and restore themselves to a civilized life?
Everyone believes that the present prostration of the people will not be removed without strong measures. It is easy to understand that the people long for benevalent polices. Is the government unable to comprehend their feelings? The people will become more individualistic and selfish if circumstances remain as they are. They may, by taking a broad view of the times, endeavor to tide over the difficult conditions patiently, but circumstances hinder this. The spirit of fortitude and manliness has been lost. The frivolous state of living for the moment will intoxicate people.
What are the policies that will change such conditions and bring opportunities for a new life? There are two measures which may be taken.
The first is to distribute three go of rice per day at least during the colder months of January and February. People can be stirred from their languor if they can obtain more rice during these two months, even though fuel, savings, and vegetables are lacking. Farmers will offer their produce more readily in response to this heroic step by the Government. Transportation, production, education, administration, and many other functions will also become stimulated. As a consequence, the reduction in supply resulting from the increased ration will be compensated for by increased production, and increased effort.

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EDITORIAL SERIES: 188 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
A bureaucratic government may hesitate, fearing the result. Success in policies, however, depends upon heroic measures. Life is not cold and static; it is elastic and dynamic. If the spirit is reactivated, existing shortages will be unexpectedly supplied. If conditions remain as they are, we shall be in extremely difficult straits.
The second step is to issue new currency as soon as possible so that inflation may be rooted out. The authorities should remove that capital in the hands of people, used for black market transactions, and should not permit anyone to have money beyond that necessary for a livelihood. The fall of prices will be a natural result. The evil practice of the rich, raising prices to the disadvantage of the poor, will collapse. Once prices became stabilized and capital is sufficient, production will resume. The Government states that the change to new currency will be carried out next April or May, but we fear we shall face a crisis before then. However good a plan it may be, it will be useless it is effected in sufficient time.
The Government did nothing the war, but it can do something good for people now, if it so desires. It all depends upon political intelligence and heroic measures. The Government can do anything if it tries, but it does not try.
ITEM 2 Ask, and It Shall be Given You - Tokyo Shimbun - 29 December 1945. Translator: Y. Ebiike.
Full Translation:
I will deliberate on current problems from the broad humanistic standpoint rather than from that of the woman's personal views. I shall consider the problem from a cosmopolitan rather than Japanese perspective.
As the result of a desperate war, we have been emancipated, and we now face a shining future. Though the difficulties we face are enormous, the pleasure of anticipation is adequate compensation. I am convinced women can override all future difficulties, just as they demonstrated their ability during the air raids. But women must no longer be submissive. We must first appreciate and desire cultural activities, and devote our efforts to founding a better community. We must exert every effort to overcome all obstacles.
It is said the social position of the Japanese woman is feudal. This may have been a virtue in the past, but modern women no longer consider it so. Progress must begin by casting off the old notions of woman's position.
Women's franchise must be fully practiced, not along the same lines as men's, but to supplement human rights with qualitites lacking in men. The woman's place in politics mist be appreciated. It is the woman who hears children and keeps house. It is the woman who enriches living with her gintility and manners. Women must elevate their selves culturally and enhance their learning. Society will be emriched as women continue improving themselves.
"Ask, and it shall be given you; knock, and the door shall be opened unto thee." But nothing will be given without asking or Knocking. Let us seek eagerly, as children seek their tea and cake. Perhaps democracy means a state wherein all people may seek the best things of life. Let us seek along with them. (Letter from ISHIDA, Aya.)
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