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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0274, 1946-01-20.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-0859

call-number: DS801 .S82

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No. 859 Date: 20 Jan 46


ITEM 1 Discussion On the Emperor System - Provincial Newspaper Kahoku Shimpo (Sendai) - 15 Jan 46. Translator: B. Ishibashi.
Full Translation:
Times have so changed that the question of whether the Emperor system should be kept or not is now a subject of public discussion. Moreover, even those matters which, so far, had been shunned by the people have come to be discussed openly. However, to what effect are the words "the Emperor system" being used by them? First, this must be made clear.
Above all things it is clear that they mean not the existing Emperor system but that of the future. Accordingly, this is a question inseparably bound up with the coming revision of the Imperial Constitution. Naturally, it can be said that the question of whether to maintain the Emperor system or not, meaning the future system is to be stipulated in the revised Constitution.
As yet, the Government has not announced any concrete plans in this respect. However, we can see from the present situation that the Government's intention is probably as follows: First, the so-called supreme authority of the Emperor under the existing Constitution will be abolished, and, as a result, the exercise of sovereignty by the Emperor will always need the assistance of the Cabinet and the approval of the Diet. At the same time, the structure of national administration will be entirely placed under the supervision of the House of Representatives. The military forces have already been disbanded, and it seems that the Privy Council is to be abolished or return to its original state as a simple, advisory organ, and that the House of Peers will be changed to an advisory organ of the House of Representatives. Accordingly, it is foreseen that, hereafter, the Government will be formed, always, only by members of the House of Representatives. Hence, the exercise of sovereignty by the Emperor will, also, be in accordance with the will of the House of Representatives.
Second, the Emperor will not be a god who reigns by means of his authority, but simply a human being who lives with, and shares, the joys and sorrows of the people. This has been made clear in the New Year Imperial Rescript. This is an outline of the character and position of the Emperor, viewed in the present circumstances. However, this gives rise to the question of whether an Emperor with the above character and position should be selected from among the existing Imperial Family, or through election, or other methods.
Those who stand against the Emperor system hold their ground, saying that if it continues, it will be utilized again by a certain circle. However, in reality, once the principles of a responsible administration have been firmly established, and democracy in the Diet has been achieved, those scoundrels who attend the throne will no longer be able to neglect the people's will in the name of the Emperor.

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EDITORIAL SERIES: 274 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
As to the efficacy of the Emperor system, so often stressed by its supporters, there is room for doubt. They often refer to the successful disbandment, at the close of the war, as an example of the virtue of the Emperor system. However, we should not ascribe it all to the virtue of the Emperor system, or rather, we should consider that its main cause was in the desperate feelings of the people, who were very tired of the war.
Moreover, the virtues of the Emperor system, as stressed by them, are attributable to his power over the army, in which the thought of reverence for the Emperor as an actual god was most eagerly supported. Hence, now that he has come to be recognized as an ordinary human being, deprived of all his divinity, to expect from him too much would be ridiculous. In short, if the Emperor system should be such as has been shown, the question of whether it should be kept or not, is not of serious concern. After all, the Emperor will become known as a human being who will represent the Nation, within and outside, and he will decide the national policy, together with the people.
The question is whether the position of the Emperor should be transmitted by heredity or not. Such being the case, I think it more prudent to let nature take her course, rather than to decide immediately.
From this concept, I cannot support the mechanical method of a plebiscite to decide it quickly, which is stressed by the Liberal Party. At present, we should work to establish a democratic administration and destroy the superstitious reverence for the Emperor, which still exists among the people, because these two things are the prerequisites of the Emperor system.
After a democratic administration has been established, with the House of Representatives as its leading organ, and after the idea of the Emperor, as servant of national administration, has been driven home to the people in general, the question of the Emperor system will be settled naturally without any particular discussion, although of late, these points are being neglected in the discussions about the Emperor system, I think the disputants mistake the means for the end.
ITEM 2 Movement for the Formation of a Democratic Front - Provincial Newspaper Shinano Mainichi Shimbun (Nagano) - 17 Jan 46. Translator: H. Arai.
Full Translation:
Against the will of the people, the SHIDEHARA Cabinet, representative of the old governing influences, has succeeded in remaining in office after a reorganization. The reason is, that there was not a strong enough democratic influence to meet the situation which would have followed the resignation of that Cabinet en bloc.
Its overtures of co-operation being rejected, the Communist Party scolded the reactionary attitude of the Social Democratic Party, and the Social Democratic Party replied that the Communist Party plotted to throw the Social Democratic Party into confusion. Moreover, the Social-Democrats denied the Liberal Party's declaration on the relationship between the Liberal Party and the Social Democrats. The above mentioned are facts exposed at the time the SHIDEHARA Cabinet was at a loss as to Whether it should reorganize or resign.
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 274 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
It is obvious that the old governing influences took advantage of the lack of co-operation among these parties.
However, with Mr. NOZAKA's return to JAPAN, the time for the formation of a democratic front has arrived. In his statement on the Emperor System, NOZAKA said that as a political system, the Emperor System must be abolished, but that the continuance of the Imperial line would depend upon the will of the people. According to his opinion, the abolition of the Emperor System does not mean the abolition of the Emperor. His doctrine is not only his party's special possession, but is expected to be supported by many people. Thus a closer rapprochement between the Social Democratic Party and his party may be brought about. Recognizing this, Mr. MIZUTANI, of the Social-Democrats stated that NOZAKA's statement to the effect that all the parties should make terms with each other without reference to their own viewpoints, will speed the formation of a common front. This suggests that the realization of a coalition between the two parties is possible.
The people want to get rid of the feudal and despotic administration of the GUMBATSU, the bureaucrats, and the ZAIBATSU as soon as possible. What the people ask of the two leftist parties is their activity. In this sense the whole nation may agree with Mr. NOZAKA who said repeatedly that the Communist Party must be loved by the people. Meanwhile, we desire that he and his party establish themselves in action. We count very strongly upon his ability.
It is worth noting that Mr. YAMAKAWA, Hitoshi a veteran Japanese socialist, is advocating the creation, of a democratic front. The movement for this has become more active. Remembering the changes in the proletarian parties in the early years of the SHOWA Era, we only hope the leftist parties will not follow their example.
For that purpose, it is most important to make the aim of the common struggle clear. The GUMBATSU, bureaucrats, and ZAIBATSU, who dragged JAPAN into the aggressive war, still maintain their controlling positions. Nevertheless, they don't make efforts to reconstruct national life. Instead of these groups, not only the Communists, Social-Democrats and working public, but also capitalists must willingly do their best to restore production and make secure the national life. As NOZAKA said, the present democratic front does not deny capitalism, but aims at the removal of feudalism and the complete democratization of administration, economy, civilization, etc. on the basis of capitalism.
Under these circumstances, the general plan of the common front must be one common to all democratic parties in JAPAN. Needless to say, the general public and every democratic body as well as the Communist and Social Democratic Parties must participate in the front.
It is a matter of joy for now JAPAN that a movement for the formation of a democratic front has started, and, we hope that the leaders of the democratic parties will forget all that has happened among them and come to terms.
ITEM 3 (I) New Obstacle (II) Old Government Price for New Rice Delivery (III) Increase Rice Delivery (IV) Increased Fertilizer and Rice - Mainichi Shimbun - 18 Jan 46. Translator: K. Sato.
Full Translation:
Although there are many factors causing the unfavorable results in
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 274 (Continued)
ITEM 3 (Continued)
rice delivery, recently a new and important factor arose. It was a blunder on the part of the Government officials to have instituted the harsh and defective Farm Land Adjustment Law.
As a result of the establishment of the Law, middle and petty land owners are now recovering their farms from the tenants and they intend to entrust them to the labor of farmlands and coolies. Because of this, tenant-farmers, unable to calculate this year's cultivation, are feeling uneasy at the gloomy prospect of their future. It will be impossible to promote rice delivery while farmers are left in this condition.
Officials of the prefecture and villages are quite lackadaisical in promoting the rice delivery. The harvest of new rice had been stored and a considerable part of it had already been lost to the black market. Moreover, we see no sign of the officials encouraging delivery. Despite all these circumstances, I delivered my allotment.
However, when I received the money, I found out that it was the self same amount as last year. When I called their attention to the fact that the purchase price was revised this year, they replied that the Agricultural Society had not yet received instructions. I admitted that it might have been the case that I had to receive the subsidy of last year. The reply was "It is said that it reached the Prefectural Office." What a slovenly state they are in[illegible].
Prefectural officials and the staff of Agricultural Societies run about with little purpose in order to earn travelling expenses. At this period of serious crisis in delivery, they are thus inflaming the feelings of the farmers. Will they not make positive endeavors to hasten the realization of subsidies and new rice prices?
(NEMOTOI, Shinichi, IBARAKI-Ken)
In order to promote rice delivery, the Government should increase the distribution of staple foods. Due to the smallness of the food supply, illegal disposal is rampant in distributing stations, and black marketing running riot in farm villages. From the farmers who wish to buy daily necessities, townspeople demand staple food. The farmers cannot refuse their claim, but they are unwilling to deliver so much.
(OI, Chitose, SHIZUOKA-Ken)
When the price of delivered ricc is 150 yen per sho, the distributing price is 30 sen, the black market price is 50 yen per sho, and ammonium sulphate is 40 sen per kan, the problem of the distribution of rice can never be solved.
Raise the price of fertilizer and increase its distribution; raise the price of rice and increase its distribution; to this farmers, non-farmers and, no doubt, all the nation will agree.
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 274 (Continued)
ITEM 3 (Continued)
In this case, the State should make great efforts, regardless of sacrifice to put such a plan into operation. If this is out into practice, I can guarantee that a 100 per cent rice delivery will be realized.
(TAKANO, Harusaka, GUNMA-Ken)
ITEM 4 Problem of Food and the Department of Agriculture and Forestry - Tokyo Shimbun - 18 Jan 46. Translator: K. Soto.
In the general conference of the Department of Agriculture and Forestry officials, held on 15 January, YOSHIDA, of the Association for the assistance of former workers in naval arsenals, asked for the control of food by the people, thus surmounting the food crisis. The officials of the Department agreed with this, which causes us to consider various subjects.
Everyone who eats rice cannot forget that, in the Department of Agriculture and Forestry, there is a Food Control Bureau. Under the jurisdiction of the Bureau, Food Administration associations supervise and distribute the staple food to the whole Nation. The control of food by the people completely repudiates this kind of official control.
The fact that the officials of the Department of agriculture and Forestry themselves supported the earnest desire of the people discredits, at least, the authority of the Department of Agriculture and Forestry.
Officials of the Department of Agriculture and Forestry, so far as they live on rice, are human beings before they are officials. Nevertheless, it is ridiculous to demand salary raises and then to discredit their own jobs. Therefore, the fact to take concrete measures to abide by the will of the people may be praised as a reasonable procedure. They must feel most acutely the responsibility, insofar as food is concerned.
It is said that the chiefs of the sections have already started a movement against the very unpopular new Minister of Agriculture and Forestry. In manifesting their opposition, the chiefs should learn from the attitude of the officials' conference. If the chiefs, themselves, had proposed measures with self-confidence, and if, after submitting them to the minister, they were refused, their movement would be reasonable.
However, mere opposition on the grounds that he is out of date, and that he has no feeling for the new age, differs little from the conflict of cliques. The people, while feeling uneasy about the new minister, believe that the chiefs of sections themselves are failures.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0274, 1946-01-20.
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