JT: Abe Cabinet says JCP promoting ‘violent revolution,’ subject to Anti-Subversive Activities Law; now, how about violent Rightists?


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Hi Blog.  As PM Abe becomes further emboldened by a lack of organized political opposition, his administration is becoming more reactionary towards Japan’s Left.  According to the Japan Times, it will subject the Japan Communist Party to the Anti-Subversive Activities Law (Hakai Katsudou Boushi Hou), reserved for subversives who resort to violence.  Of course, the JCP is a legitimate party (in fact, Japan’s oldest political party) with a (declining) number of seats in the Diet, and it is allowed to agitate for reforms and even non-violent revolution, as it has for decades now.  But Abe seems bent on a return to Japan’s old form, when Leftists were incarcerated, tortured, and killed in custody in Wartime Showa Japan.

Looking forward to him similarly cracking down on Japan’s violent rightists as well, but I wouldn’t hold my breath.  I presume violent rightists wouldn’t be considered “revolutionaries” by the Abe Administration in the same sense — their form of revolution would take Japan back to a status quo of inter alia Emperor worship, unaccountable elite rule, and military adventurism.  To Abe’s clique that is also part of Japan’s history, even if that would “subvert” Japan’s current democratic institutions.  Dr. ARUDOU, Debito


Abe Cabinet says JCP promoting ‘violent revolution,’ subject to anti-subversive law

The Japanese Communist Party remains a “violent revolutionary” group subject to the scrutiny of a law restricting the activities of subversive organizations, Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s government has declared.

A statement approved by Abe’s Cabinet on Tuesday highlighted the government’s stance that the leftist JCP continues to uphold its longtime policy of promoting what the National Police Agency calls “violent revolution.”

The statement, issued in response to a question by former Democratic Party of Japan lawmaker Takako Suzuki, went on to declare the JCP as being among the organizations targeted by what is known as the anti-subversive activities law.

Yoshiki Yamashita, the high-ranking secretariat chief of the party, responded Tuesday by expressing his strong displeasure over the statement. The party will “lodge a strong protest” with the government and demand that it be retracted, he said.

Originally founded in 1922 as an underground organization, the JCP insists that Japan undergo revolution to transform into a socialist country.

It rocketed into notoriety in the 1950s when it masterminded what the NPA calls a litany of “violent, destructive activities” nationwide — including assaults against police.

Such extremist activities, the NPA says, stemmed largely from a controversial platform the JCP adopted in 1951, in which the party declared it is “wrong” to try to achieve Japan’s democratic revolution through peaceful measures.

In the economic field, the JCP has traditionally championed the goal of wrestling power from capitalists and improving the life of the working class. In recent years, the policy has led to its objections to the Trans-Pacific Partnership free trade agreement as well as the planned consumption tax hike.

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7 comments on “JT: Abe Cabinet says JCP promoting ‘violent revolution,’ subject to Anti-Subversive Activities Law; now, how about violent Rightists?

  • Jim di Griz says:

    JCP, the only opposition party that increased its number of Diet seats in the last election, the only party not made up of LDP failed clique cast-offs (who share essentially the same views and core values as the LDP), the only party to have policies that are actually in opposition to the LDP, and the party that got most votes after the LDP in the last election, so yes, it seems that Abe is doing what Aso advised, and acting like nazi Hitler in taking over the country by subverting democracy.

    And Debito is right; if you got a black van, you get a different application of the law!

    — Apologies for the error of saying JCP’s seats have been decreasing. Force of habit.

  • Forwarding comment from cyberspace:

    This is nothing new, the police have for years consistently noted the Communist Party as an area of interest along with right wing extremists and the Yodo hijackers in their reports in public safety. This is part of what I would call a larger story about the Cold War being quietly fought out in civil society In Japan, even now, despite it having ended decades ago elsewhere. Though much of the information is sanitized from the standard accounts, a lot of famous constitutional cases actually involve some element of suppressing/oppressing communists/socialists.

    Some of this can probably be attributed to the momentum and the police trying to keep their budgets, but there is probably a historical element: the communists were the only political party in post war japan that called for the elimination of the imperial system. […]

    [That said,] the government officially commenting it openly like this rather than just letting the police bureaucrats quietly do their thing is certainly new.

  • Forwarding comment from cyberspace:

    The JCP’s announcement–what? five months ago (including at FCCJ)? – of their new policy with regards to cooperation with the opposition parties has a lot of LDP members scared. At the local level, the JCP does better than is sometimes reported in Tokyo. And an aging Japan means a lot of long-standing JCP policies, especially vis-a-vis social welfare issues, are going to be increasingly popular with retired voters. At the same time, younger voters who missed the Cold War may have less fixed ideas about the word “communist”. As Colin said, this is nothing really new, in terms of police and official harrassment. But I do think the government is wondering if the political winds and social trends might be blowing in the JCP’s favor more. For Abe, there’s also a personal issue: the JCP and some other opposition parties have banded together to support a candidate in the Hokkaido No. 5 byelection next month, to replace Machimura-san, the late leader of the LDP faction that Abe belonged(belongs) comes from. As I tell Americans, if you want to understand Japanese politics, no need to read scholarly works or journalism: just watch “The Godfather” series or “The Sopranos”. It really is “all in the family”.

  • Forwarding comment from cyberspace:

    A few Japanese friends i have talked to have mentioned that their image of the left is that it is violent. This seemed ironic and incorrect to me, considering that left wing groups are almost always far weaker than the security forces sent against them, and most street violence in protests happen as a reaction to police action. the power of violence is overwhelming on the side of the government in Japan, the UK, Ireland, etc (and therefore the powerful, the conservative, the capitalist elite).

    As to the ideological commitment to violence as a way to move towards revolution: its a tough one. It’s hardly surprising that those who work against far stronger opponents will be drawn towards some form of ‘illicit violence’ as one possible technique. And its also common and understandable for such violence to be criticised as horrific. But we can’t leave it there, because the powerful elite also do violence. Their violence has three things key elements: it’s legal, more widespread and far more effective. So, if we are going to condemn and reduce the illicit violence of extreme groups we also have to condemn and reduce the ‘official’ violence of the government and the powerful elites.

    Therefore if the JCP are curtailed under an application of ‘the prevention of subversive activities law’, the Japanese government should be curtailed under the application of we might call ‘the prevention of repressive activities law.’ Except, of course, no such law exists, since it would threaten the free movement of those powerful elites.

  • Jim Di Griz says:

    I’m being a cynic tonight, I know, but really, isn’t it time we even stopped bothering to present the case against Japan’s poor governance in rational terms, as part of a logical conceptual framework?

    For example, look at this;


    Abe’s wife, who doesn’t hold any elected public office, nor is employed in any capacity by the LDP has decided that she has the right to speak up and decree that there is no problem with Abe exceeding LDP leadership term limits so that he can still be leader of the LDP when the 2020 Olympics takes place.

    This is a woman who touts her husband’s ‘womanomics’ whilst at the same time letting Abe’s mother tell her that she can’t manage the bar/restaurant that she herself owns.

    This is the sort of Nazi style party governance games that Aso is so fond of alluding to.

    The absurdity of the fact that the Prime Ministers wife is weighing in on ignoring the rules to allow him a longer stay office should be raising flags everywhere that Japan is a joke country that functions like North Korea, China, and Zimbabwe.

  • The people who run Japan seem to like Abe. Rules? What rules?

    I fully expect to see more ‘shortcuts’ like this implemented in the years to come. Japan is gearing up for another war with China (economic, political & military), and this time, Japan is not in a very strong position.

  • Loverilakkuma says:

    Anti-Subversive Activities Law was made after the domestic terrorism of a notorious religious cult group. Cookie right-wingers tailgating a van with a sound speaker is much more annoying and dangerous than nominal JCP for clinging to the ideology of “violent revolution” in the early 1920s and 30s.


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