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Press translations [Japan]. Political Series 0076, 1945-12-14.
Supreme Commander for The Allied Powers. Allied Translator and Interpreter Section.

translation-number: political-0320

call-number: DS801 .S85

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No. 320 Date: 14 Dec 45


ITEM 1 Vacant Seats in the Diet - Tokyo Shimbun - 10 Dec 45. Translator: N. Miyakami.
Full Translation.
Mr. WATANABE, aged thirty two, secretary of the Constitutional Young Men Party, states as follows:
"To get down to brass tacks, the convocation of the current special session of the Diet itself is of no meaning. All the House members should have resigned their posts as soon as the war ended, and everything should be discussed in a Diet full of fresh atmosphere. However, the Diet was convoked and over half of its term has already passed, so I think it of no use to repeat this tiresome talk about it. We are watching with sharp eyes the bills submitted and the members discussing them. Since each bill is apt to have deep and direct influence upon our national life, I think that knowing the people's real will and discussing carefully each bill are very important, but I wonder if all the present members have treated the bills with care. The vacant seats, with only name plates on them tell us enough of the indifferent attitudes in the Diet.
The present Diet building should have been destroyed by bombing, and if the Diet had been held at the site of the fire or in an open field, we may have had a more lively session. The discussion of both the Farm Land Law and the Labor Law may, I hear, be left unfinished.
At the general election to be held next spring, we have considerable expectation for a movement comprising many young men who have newly acquired the right to vote and are to play a new role hereafter, as well as that of women, first granted suffrage. But, of course, we do not consider these decisive factors, but only part of a single step forward. I think it will be necessary to give not only the things which ought to be granted but also political training to today's young men and women.
ITEM 2 The Time of the General Election Will Be Considered - Asahi Shimbun - 11 Dec 45. Translator: S. Kawasaki.
Full Translation:
At the meeting of the House of Representative's Election Law Revision Committee on 10 December, the following matters were discussed between the Chairman of the committee KIYOSE, Ichiro and the Government.
QUESTION: "The POTSDAM Declaration has no provision restricting the legislative power of the Diet. What does the Government think about the volidity of the laws, which are formed by the Diet, in relation to Supreme Headquarters of Allied Forces? What plans does the Government have in relation to the practice of democracy?"

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POLITICAL SERIES: 76 (Continued)
ITEM 2 (Continued)
Prime Minister SHIDEHARA: "The POSTDAM Declaration theoretically, has no provision restricting legislative power. In reality, however, the policies which cannot he decided upon by negotiations with the Allied Powers, or policies which are contrary to the Declaration, can hardly be practised. It is natural that the democratization of our country should he expected to be carried out along the lines of the POTSDAM Declaration. We should not do it unwillingly."
QUESTION: "The forthcoming election will be carried out for the sake of the POTSDAM Declaration which provides for the establishment of a Government based on the free will revealed by the Nation, I think. What about it?"
Prime Minister SHIDEHARA: "It is most necessary that a responsible Government be established by the people of their own free will. The Government intends to do its best that the gist of the POTSDAM Declaration be thoroughly understood by the Nation.
QUESTION: "When will the dissolution of the Diet be requested of the Throne?"
Prime Minister SHIDEHARA: "I am not ready to answer that now."
QUESTION: "According to the rules of the Election Law Revision Bill, the date of the next election (which should be within 30 days after dissolution of the Diet) can be postponed. Why not postpone the election a short time in order to give the people suitable time for an adequate election campaign?
Home Minister HORIKIRI: "As the Diet must reconvene soon to deal with budgeting matters, the postponement must not be long. It will be considered in conjunction with the date for the Dissolution of the Diet."
QUESTION: "When will the list of new voters be decided upon?"
Home Minister HORIKIRI: "It will be decided upon on 31 December, based on the census of 1 November."
QUESTION: "The election of local assembly members has been postponed since 1943. The prefectural elections will be carried out on 1 September 1946. The election in cities, towns and villages, will be carried out on 20 September. Why aren't they carried out at an earlier time?"
Home Minister HORIKIRI: "They will be carried out as soon as practicable."
ITEM 3 General Resignation of Diet Members. Ozaki's Bombshell - Nippon Sangyo Keizai - 11 Dec 45. Translator: Paasche.
Full Translation:
On the subject of the Diet's greatest political problem, war responsibility, an ugly meet slinging contest has developed between the Progressive and Liberal Parties. After the parties had filed there resolutions, the matter was finally settled in an atmosphere of uncertainty. Some of the independents, who had previously advocated general resignation of all Diet members, quietly affected a complete turnabout without sign of conscience. Angered by the behavior. The Diet's grand old man, OZAKI, Yukio, stated that, owing to their shameful responsibility for the lost war the present Diet members were not in a position to deliberate upon constitutional reform.
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POLITICAL SERIES: 76 (Continued)
ITEM 3 (Continued)
He, therefore, moved for the resignation in masse of Diet members and the prohibition of their holding office far four years. On the ocassion of the next general election, a special Imperial Rescript was to be petitioned for.
His specified demands were:
Change of the era.
Speeding up of deliberations of the Constitution.
A definite Declaration of Repentance.
A petition for an Imperial Rescript on the occasion of the next elections.

These demands were laid before the Diet and handed, in writing, to Diet President SHIMADA on 3 December.
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HomePress translations [Japan]. Political Series 0076, 1945-12-14.
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