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Press translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0286, 1946-01-23.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: editorial-0893

call-number: DS801 .S82

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No 893 Date: 23 Jan 46


ITEM 1 Effect of Forced Delivery Doubtful - Yomiuri Hochi - 20 Jan 46. Translator: S. Ota.
Full Translation:
The ministry of agriculture and Forestry recently decided on compulsory measures to assure the prompt delivery of rice by the farmers as well as the reimposition of the ceiling price system on perisable food. To carry out its decision, an urgent Imperial Ordinance will be issued. Thus, both those who refuse to deliver the allotted amount of rice to the Government and black market dealers in staple foods will be severely punished.
Only 28 per cent of the allotted amount of rice has been delivered by the farmers by 10 January, although this month has hitherto been the best time for rice delivery. With such slow progress in delivery, the food crisis will come earlier than formerly expected. It is true, to some extent, that the Government is now hastily trying to carry out the delivery of rice by strengthening food controls.
However, we want to ask the Government if it has taken every appropriate measure before using such forcible means. Moreover, we would like to know if it can assert that the rice delivery will be accomplished by these compulsory measures.
Frankly, we believe that the Nation no longer has confidence in the Government and doubts its authority. If the government abuses its power and ignores the character of the farmers, they will become more antagonistic. Moreover, if the police or similar officials break into the homes of farmers and inspect them, the only effect will be to cool the farmer's desire to deliver rice. From this standpoint, we oppose the compulsory delivery system.
If the Government is to strengthen controls in order to assure the rice delivery, the most urgent is impartiality in the allottments for delivery. The Government as yet has not taken any measure to improve the present irrational allotting system. In fact, those who are honest in the present situation lose the most. The compulsory delivery system will only exert force in its unreasonable way.
The farmers are never content with one-sided orders from above, like those from the Prefectural Agricultural Associations to the Villiage Agricultural Associations, and, from the latter to the farmers. Hence, it is urgent to democratize the machinery of the agricultural associations and make them autonomous organizations. For example, autonomous and co-operative organizations, such as farmers' associations or farmers' leagues, must be formed, and inturn the present allottment must be made impartially by self-government and cooperation. At present, town and village officials and the staff of the agricultural associations are in authoritative positions to encourage the delivery of rice. Impure and unreliable elements must be swept out of these positions. They must be replaced by new leaders,

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EDITORIAL SERIES: 286 (Continued)
ITEM 1 (Continued)
selected in an election by the farmers. It is important to democratize the social machinery in the farming villages.
If the agricultural revolution is to take place, the working farmers must become their own masters. They ought to be responsible to deliver rice voluntarily, for their liberty must always accompany their duties; in this respect the Government must lead them. It should be the farmer himself who is dissatisfied if he has not accomplished his delivery.
In its true nature, the amount of delivery should be determined on a personal basis of responsibility. To provide for this, official control over the types of crops must be abolished, and the farmers must be given a free hand in their work. It is the farmer himself who knows best what crop is most suited for a particular part of his farm, and how the best harvest can be attained. However, at present the allottment of each crop, such as rice, wheat, or sweet potato, to each district or farm is ordered by paper plans from central offices to each prefecture, from the latter to the towns or villages, and further to the Agricultural Affairs Execution Unions (NOJI JIKKO-KUMIAI). Thus, the proportion of each crop to be cultivated is assigned to every farmer by this Union. The Government seems to think it can control food by assigning the proportions of each crop. Such uniform control must be removed at this time. Some farmers failed in the cultivation of potatoes or sweet potatoes, for they had been forced to cultivate these crops on unsuitable farms. They were obliged to accomplish the delivery of these crops by borrowing them from other farmers. At present, such examples are quite prevalent. Of course, this is unreasonable and should be abolished.
The daily necessities demanded by the farmers must be distributed for them by priority, Now that the value of money has been considerably lowered, food is requested of the farmers when they need it to buy commodities or to pay the doctor, etc. It is doubtful if the Government will succeed in an effective supervision of food without a thorough policy against inflation. This problem is also related to the gap between the supervision of farm and industry products. Nowadays, the only active production is in the agricultural field. In the industrial field, various types of production are being sabotaged, or have not yet been re-opened. If strict control is to be had over agriculture, the same must apply to industries which manufacture necessary commodities, thus effecting an economic balance.
If the Government lacks the political ability to make such a synthetic plan, and if it forcibly controls only agriculture, the dissatisfaction and complaints of the farmers will consequently increase. Thus, the complete collapse of our economy will be invited by sabotage in farming. The Government promised to distribute certain necessities to the farmers, such as fertilizer, farming implements, cotton commodities, etc. However, can we expect this promise to be fulfilled? At present, the black markets are thriving everywhere, and staple foods are openly sold. We cannot help doubting the Government's ability to rigidly supervise this with its poor police powers. The problem is, after all, that of politics. In view of this, we think that the speedy establishment of a Government by a democratic front is absolutely essential.
ITEM 2 Changes among Prefectural Governors - Tokyo Shimbun - 21 Jan 46. Translator: K. Sato.
Full Translation:
Wholesale changes among the prefectural governors are expected. Thus far there has been little effort on the Government's part to meet the recent SCAP directive. However, it is the power of the new Home Minister to decide whether or not this shall be a true renovation. It is reported that the new Minister, on this occasion, will choose both competent civilians and young and spirited men from within the Home Ministry to be appointed as prefectural governors. Moreover, in view of the aggravated food conditions, it seems that he will select many talented men from the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry.
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EDITORIAL SERIES: 286 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
Since the end of the war there has been a considerable alteration in the functions of prefectural governors. Therefore, it is improper to limit the choice to Home Ministry officials, who have knowledge and experience in only police administration. It is natural to stress the seriousness of the food situation, yet it is very doubtful whether officials of the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry would be suitable merely for that reason. If an immediate public election of governors is impossible, to cope with the transitional period until its realization, prefectural governors should be selected not from just a few departments but from a wider range, both in and out of the Government. In this way, they can make the changes positive rather than negative, and this may serve as a means of reforming our bureaucratic system. The forthcoming changes in the governors, will be, this time, a touchstone to the new Home Minister.
ITEM 3 Trends Toward General Election - Asahi Shimbun - 21 Jan 46. Translator: T. Naruse.
Full Translation:
The election preparations of all political parties, which were suspended for a while, owing to SCAP's blow to the militarists, began to show signs of activity again, due to the Allied directive that "the general elections will eventually be allowed, but not before 15 March".
The Progressive Party, which experienced the greatest blow by the directive, has somewhat recovered from its interim confusion, having the old foundation as its only basis. Therefore, the party has authorized new and old candidates of 400 in number, including substitutes for the banished persons. It expects at least 200 of them to be elected.
The Liberal Party, on the other hand, intends to take advantage of the Progressive Party's weak points and obtain all of its ballots. From this viewpoint, the Liberal Party has authorized a total of 350 condidates, and has conqratulated itself, expecting that 200 to 250 condidates will be elected.
Furthermore, the Social-Democrat Party is considerably high-spirited since it has 300 condidates and intends to win 200 to 250 seats in the Diet, aiming to be majority party. And even the Communist Party, which has put off the question of whether its candidates will be elected or not, has officially recognized 150 candidates, and has claimed that if it wins 50 seats in the Diet, it will organize a coalition cabinet with the Social-Democrat Party.
The current social situation is likely to be favorable to the Communist and Social-Democrat Parties, but the old foundation can never be neglected. Consequently, if we make a conservative estimate of the number of every party's seats, the result will be as follows:
Progressive Party……………...150
Liberal Party…………………..120 - 130
Social-Democratic Party………120 - 130
Communist Party……………....14 - 15
Of course, these figures are a prediction. Consequently, we must look forward to their meetings to learn what the actual result will be. Anyhow, it is certain that the success or failure of the democratic front will have a great influence upon party movements.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Editorial Series 0286, 1946-01-23.
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