Short History of the Japan Left (7)

Iwao Kitamura ikita at
Thu Sep 7 20:31:06 MDT 1995

To describe history of japanese left, I can not
avoid writing about new lefts and student movement.

I wrote that Anti-Anpo struggle was led by
Socialist student league. This was a student section
of Communist League ("Bund"). Bund was founded by
moistic former members of JCP.
After the Anpo struggle, it was unveiled that the
several leaders of Bund were aided financially by
a right-wing boss Seigen Tanaka. This was a great
scandal for Bund. They immediately split to several
organizations and lost its influence on mass
Vacant space was occupied by several other organizations
including DY (Democratic Youth, youth organ of JCP).
Trotskist League split to RCL(Revolutionary Communist
League) and JBFI(Japan branch of 4th International).
RCL soon split to RM and Kernel.
>From JLSY(see previous post), "Liberation fraction" was
born as a radical student organization. Structural
Reformists organized Student Socialist Front (Front).
In the field of student movement, DY was the largest.
In 1968, May revolution stimulated student movement also
in Japan. The first revolve began in Nippon university.
Nippon university was famous that students rights were
extremly limited and right-extremist students dominated
the students life. The revolt aimed at democratization
of the university. But the management of the university
utilized those right-extremists to oppress the revolt.
They often used japanese sword to threaten activists.
However, solidarity movement spread to other universities.
In the case of university of Tokyo, the movement began to
critisize the exsistence of the university. DY wanted to
limit the movement as a reform of the university, but
radical students could not stop there. The student actvists
except DY and RM founded Zenkyoto as a body of cooperated
struggle. They prevented the entrance examination for fiscal
year 1969 by barricades. Then they occupied the Yasuda Hall.
Riot cops were introduced to the university and all of them
were arrested after 2 days fight (using 'cocktails').
1970 was the another year of Anpo struggle. Students organized
strong demonstrations at the time. They wore helmets and held
banboos in order to fight with cops or with other groups.
After the defeat, a cooling period came. Front vanished immediately
though it showed the largest demonstration at the Anpo 70.
RM vs Kernel, RM vs Liberation fraction, there began killing
each other. They attacked their enemy fractions with iron pipes
at night. More than hundred died in '70s.
Such behaviours freezed the student movement.

to be continued...
In next post, I'd review the workers struggle in '70s.
Iwao Kitamura
a member of theoritical study group
Socialist Association (Japan)
E-mail : ikita at
personal web:

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