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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0210, 1946-01-07.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-0653

call-number: DS801 .S82

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No, 653 Date: 7 Jan 46


ITEM 1 Actual Use of Provincial Administration - Provincial Newspaper Kobe Shimbun - 28 Dec 45. Translator: S. Ota.
It is natural that provincial adminstration has come to a deadlock in the situation following the war. Such a state might possibly have been avoided if the provincial administrative: organizations had been given a real autonomous character. To say the least, the present organizations do not carry out adminstration as autonomous bodies. Of course, they are not contructcd as such according to Law, and are, in fact, morely terminal organizations which receive orders from the Government. They lack any sort of flexibility. The chief of a town or a village is merely a robot who transmits orders from the higher-ups to the people.
Such being the case, we cannot expect suitable policies to solve the particular problems of each town or village. For example, was there any chief of town or village who could lead the dwellers in the town or village with a calm and self-possessed attitude in the confusion of 15 August? Or was there any leader who could see through to the real aspects of the situation and take measures to stabilize the minds of the people? No! They were all merely waiting for directives from the prefectural authorities, and allowed the situation to continue.
It is not too much to say that the fate of our country depends upon the delivery of rice from the farmers. Yet we have not heard of a chief of a town or village in our prefecture who has devoted himself to the task of delivering rice. It is not necessarily the fault of each individual chief, for if one of them has an excellent policy for encouraging the delivery and the will to put it in practice, he is usually restrained by the other chiefs. That is, any movement unique to town or a village is not disseminated by agreement among the chiefs. This is a very irrational system which cannot be abolished without a drastic reform of the resent staff of towns or villages.
If we are to construct new farming villages, we must dissolve the old administrative organizations, and for this purpose the abolition or the drastic reform of the present local offices is necessary, as was once stated in detail in these columns. In accordance with this, the chief of the town or village must be given the right to carry out the policy, as well as the responsibility for the local administrative unit. However able the chief may be, he cannot do anything under the present system, for he is not allowed to do anything until it is approved by the local offices or the prefectural authorities.

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EDITOIRAL SERIES: 210 (Continued)
ITEM 2 The Year of National Ordeal is Over - Provincial Newspaper Chubu Nippon Shimbun (Nagoya) - 31 Dec 45. Translator: M Kato.
Every country in the world is now in the throes of the reconstruction of a peaceful world. As the Pope pointed out in his message to the world on Christmas Eve, "What exists now in the world is not true peace, but a post-war period." The ordeal JAPAN is now subjected to, will probably be the most severe in the history of the world. Compared with the MEIJI Restoration this ordeal is far greater in scope and far more serious than the one of 80 years ago. The MEIJI Restoration was in the nature of a reform pertaining chiefly to JAPAN, and sewed to awaken her from her long tranquil dream. It was, of course, partly due to international influences, however, that its ideological basis and its scope was limited entirely to JAPAN herself. In contrast with this, the reformation we now face is full of international character.
What caused this reformation? The maladministration of the TOJO and KONOYE Cabinets should be blamed for basely leading the Japanese people from the MANCHURIA Incident into the CHINA Incident, and further into the Greater East Asia War. The true cause of the present change, however, may be traced far back into the remote ages of the founding of JAPAN. In other words, it is the outlook of the Japanese on JAPAN'S fate and on the world that is responsible for this drastic change. This accounts for the far-reaching and grave nature of this reform as opposed to that of MEIJI which assumed only political and social meaning.
This change is the greatest since the 'establishment of JAPAN, the liquidation of a 2,600 year history during which the Japanese people indulged in insular and self-conceited ideas. This task of the Japanese people must necessarily be followed by the most severe ordeal because it is the amputation of established ideas, faith, and traditions. It is probable that we can safely call this unprecedented in all the history of the world. In addition to this trial which alone may be said to be more than we can bear, there is a store of hardships in the food crisis, the fuel shortage, in insufficient clothing, and in traffic congestion. We are, as it were, surrounded by innumerable difficulties. This was beyond all expectation last year.
This year has been the hardest year for the Japanese, the hardest perhaps in all the history of the world. Nevertheless we must forbear with the best of grace as we believe there is no alternative for the rebirth of JAPAN. Bear in mind that the brightest future is in store for the Japanese after success in this struggle. Now, we take leave of a year full of bitter memories to greet the New Year, the beginning of a hopeful new age.
ITEM 3 The Goal of Movies and Three Other Letters - Asahi Shimbun - 5 Jan 46. Translator: Y. Ebiike.
Full Translation:
The Goal of Movies: - Outside of two or three serious movies released immediately after the end of the war, silly and useless movies, designed only for amusement .are still being produced. It is true that movies should be for the pleasure of the masses, but the present Japanese movie public will not be content to shed meaningless tears or to repeat stupid and absurd laughter. Some say, "The masses desire such amusement as is intended for diversion and enjoyment and of no grave meaning," but this is a distorted view of the mind of the masses. Surely they are also eager to pursue pleasures which would affect their inner soul.
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 210 (Continued)
ITEM 3 (Continued)
Proof lies in the fact that a production named "The Horse", which concerned itself with a man's true character, could attract many fans. The masses, though supposedly having a low average of intelligence, are earnestly seeking things which will add something new to their knowledge and culture. Film producers, therefore, must first meet this demand. (NISHIURA, Ichiji, an ex-clerk of the JAPAN movie Company in KANAGAWA)
All the Japanese movies at present have love as their theme. JAPAN is reconstructing herself, yet the movies are not concerned with the reconstruction of a new JAPAN. We must not be concerned with love affairs, but with science. Without seeking the wisdom and knowledge of all the world, and without sharing the fruits of its studies with all the world, the new JAPAN cannot stand abreast with other nations.
Students are at present studying under great handicaps, because their schools and their chemical Laboratories were burnt. If chemistry students, for example, can look at chemical subjectmatter in movies, they will be greatly benefited.
Many say that reconstructing a new JAPAN must be first begun by young students. Then why not let them see movies of science and of the construction of a new JAPAN, instead of those love affairs?
What has become of the newsreels recently? If the radio can be compared to the ears of the people, it is newsreels and newspapers that are the eyes of the people. We must first learn characters to read a newspaper, but news pictures do not require such study. If we have time to go to a cinema house, we can "see" news, and cinema houses are everywhere. There are many people who have lost all human emotion and are about to become hungry beasts from their present condition of mental collapse. Hence, it is the duty of news pictures to awaken those people by impressing them with a forceful feeling of actual reality and by addressing them with sincere appeals.
I have not enjoyed a single movie since the end of the war. Hastily produced, all the movies I have seen have depicted houses of western style in JAPAN, only outwardly genuine and of meager content. These movies have been effective only in promoting popular songs to idle students and the masses on the streets. Is this the function of Japanese movies, which bear an important role in reconstructing JAPAN? Let film producers realize their responsibility and stop making propaganda films. (NISHIHARA, Sachiko, in SHIZUOKA)
ITEM 4 New Year's Resolution - Yomiuri Hochi - 5 Jan 46. Translator: K. Nagatani.
Full Translation:
The two directives by SCAP are suited to the revolution about to commence with the New Year. They have ordered the purging of scores of fascistic organizations and innumerable groups which include most of the Japanese Government's top-crust, outstanding figures of non - official groups, secret organizations and the KEMPEITAI (TN: Japanese Military Police). They misled our Nation not only during the war, but also since the surrender and have confronted the people by the present crisis of starvation, unemployment and inflation. The expulsion of these feudalistic forces will be unquestionably advantageous to those true democrats who are firmly resolved to tackle the pressing difficulites.
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 210 (Continued)
ITEM 4 (Continued)
The present directive it is believed, will have its effects on a few of the cabinet members. If so, the SHIDEHARA cabinet will inevitably fall. We have long been disappointed with the cabinet. Nevertheless, we have not moved to overthrow it. That is the reason our national life now stands on the brink of collapse. Now is the tine our people should brace themselves to close the gap caused by the old rulers' fall and cope with the pressing difficulties.
However, we are very uneasy as to whether our Nation is quite ready for that achievement or not. It is a miserable reality in present-day JAPAN that the people are not well prepared for the opportunities offered. The present crisis is by no means one which the people cannot overcome, but it is one which the present Government cannot surmount, because it is plotting to protect the interests of the ruling classes at all costs. The directive will surely help the awakening of the Japanese people in politics. Our people today have made noticeable progress towards a political awakening compared to conditions just after the end of the war. All the forces which flourished at the sacrifice of our Nation's welfare are about to be extinguished by the Allied Powers. The Japanese people are expected to be enlightened enough to take the initiative in politics.
The first step by our Nation towards its political awakening must be the pursuit of the war leaders and those who have infringed on our human rights. In this connection, it cannot be said that the present directive included all of them. Accordingly, it is up to our people to pursue the remnants on our own initiative. The pursuit of them will naturally lead to the management of various problems, including that of food, by the people. As a result, the political consciousness of our people will attain maturity. Accordingly, the ideals of the present directive must be embraced and further developed by our own people. However, those responsible for the war are strongly opposed to this and are shouting against internecine strife. Their opinion, outwardly, seems reasonable.
Internecine strife may be miserable, to be sure, but we must never forget the names of those who caused the aimless war, sacrificed the lives of numerous people and applied all the possible pressure upon the masses. Compared to their crimes, our seeking their war responsibility is but a small matter. Nevertheless, this small matter is essential to the awakening of our Nation. We must be careful lest we be fooled again by those who seek to avoid internecine strife. The people must be trained to control politics by themselves after the collapse of the feudalistic, ruling class.
At every opportunity, so far, we have demanded that those responsible for the war withdraw on their own initiative. Nevertheless, they have refused to do so, until a directive was issued by SCAP. The present order not only cuts to peices the network of the ruling classes, but forces them to reflect on their past misdeeds. However, as long they refuse to consider their past deeds, our internecine strife will become more rigorous. This advice is intended for the leaders of villages, for bureaucrats, for representatives and even for the Emperor. The pursuit by SCAP of those responsible for the war is adding to its severity. The Emperor, too, may not be excepted. Therefore, shouldn't the Emperor be ready for abdication?
The general election will be held sooner or later. Our economy will be aggravated. No one can be sure that things may not be worse than were conditions at the end of the war. The present directive in one sense proved a warning for our people, too. No matter how thorny our way may be, our people should go ahead bravely in the establishment of democracy.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0210, 1946-01-07.
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