Letter to the Editors

Dear Editors,

Shinzo Abe, the historical denialist in chief, is now cornered in the international arena. We in Japan thank your struggles in the belly of the biggest beast. The unveiling of the "Comfort Women" memorial at St. Mary's Square in San Francisco, is the great achievement of halmonis-victims of the Japanese military CW system-and the Comfort Women Justice Coalition (CWJC) and other activists in the U.S. at large.

Halmoni Kim Hak-sun first spoke out as the CW victim in 1991 about her experiences under the abominable system set up by the Japanese military forces.

"Why in 1991, after decades of silence?" is the question most favored by Japanese denialists who pretend to believe that they can undermine trustworthiness of CW testimonies, which, however, reveals their own serious crisis.

She overcame unimaginable difficulties and rose up, encouraged by Korean workers' great victory and driven by her sense of danger about Japanese re-militarization and repeat of its war crimes.

In South Korea, the Great Workers' Struggle in 1987 changed the power relationship in the whole society, winning a historical victory over the military dictatorship, which largely consisted of ex-collaborators with Japanese colonial rule. The Japanese ruling class lost its strategic leverage.

On top of it, halmonis' actions seriously upset Yasuhiro Nakasone's scheme of "Final Settlement of Post-WWII Politics." During the 1980s, the then Prime Minister Nakasone openly declared class war. "I promoted privatization of Japan National Railways with the clear intention to make a glorious Constitution anew, because JNR privatization would destroy the National Railway Workers Union, then Sohyo (the then largest national trade union center) and the Socialist Party, which would enable us to make a glorious Constitution anew" he said in an interview by NHK, the national TV.1

The year 1991 marked the historical turning point of the post-WWII political landscape in Japan. The first time since the Japanese defeat in 1945, the government sent its troops abroad, deploying mine sweepers to the Persian Gulf. Such a big change became possible through the busting of railway unions and the destruction of Sohyo and the SP, the largest and somewhat "left wing" opposition party.

Among railway unions, only Doro-Chiba (National Railway Motive Power Union of Chiba) struck against the JNR privatization. The management fired 40 of its leaders and members in retaliation. It struck again after the privatization, which prevented the open betrayal of the leadership of the NRU and helped its rank and file continue the struggle for reinstatement of fired members.

In these circumstances, the right-turn of Japanese politics suffered a severe blow from halmonis.

War crimes are not just problems of past history but a burning issue in the current class war.

Halmonis' demands for their dignity and condemnation of Japanese war crimes were, and still are, a wake-up call for the Japanese working class and people to rise up again to stop the destruction of the hard won Constitution including Article 9-the renunciation of war and military forces, and a new war-thus a decisive blow for Japanese imperialists.

Now, from the beginning of 2017, the Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has been grilled about the Moritomo Gakuen and Kake Gakuen scandals, both involving ultra-nationalist private education and huge tax money corruption.

In September, he abruptly decided to dissolve the Lower House and launch an election campaign.

The Governor of Tokyo, Yuriko Koike, established a new party, "Party of Hope."  Seiji Maehara, President of the Democratic Party, decided to make his party members run under Koike's ticket. The largest opposition party with over a hundred MPs was thus dismantled overnight. Such a thing can happen only in wartime or under looming war.

Rikio Kozu, the president of the largest national trade union center in Japan, Rengo, was the co-conspirator of this scheme; Rengo is now in turmoil.

Abe and Koike are not ordinary conservatives. They are both leading members of Nippon Kaigi (Japan Conference) a Fascist or quasi-Fascist organization, which promotes historical denialism, xenophobia, nuclear armament of Japan, destruction of labor rights and the Constitution among other things.

The new president of South Korea, Moon Jae-in, introduced the Terminal High Altitude Area Defense system under the pretext of "defense from the missiles from North Korea." The THAAD is, however, completely useless for supposed missile attacks from the North which do not fly high altitude, even if we accept at face value the MIC's claim that THAAD's interceptor missiles can "hit" adversary missiles. The THAAD has not just interceptor missiles but also a sophisticated radar system. Deployment of the THAAD in South Korea is obviously a drastic escalation of surveillance of China and Russia into their huge landmass: a preparation of war against them.

Shortly before the U.S. invasion of Afghanistan-China's neighbor-the Pentagon described its strategy against China (and Russia) in its Quadrennial Defense Review: "Adversaries will also likely seek to exploit strategic depth to their advantage. Mobile ballistic missile systems can be launched from an extended range, exacerbating the anti-access and area-denial challenges. Space denial capabilities, such as ground-based lasers, can be located deep within an adversary's territory." So, the DoD wanted "the development and acquisition of robust capabilities to conduct persistent surveillance, precision strikes, and maneuvers at varying depths within denied areas."

At that time, in 2001, the wars on Afghanistan and Iraq were looming. Now, a war on Korean Peninsula is imminent. It will go nuclear.

In these circumstances, the CWJC and U.S. activists at large drove a wedge between Japanese imperialists and the S. Korean neo-liberal government.2

Moon Jae-in nominated a union busting corporate lawyer to be his secretary. As the chief secretary of the president Roh Moo-hyn, he helped dismantle labor rights and enter into the U.S.-S. Korea Free Trade Agreement, arresting many farmers and workers. He is our enemy. Nonetheless, he cannot openly collaborate with Japanese historical denialism, if he desires to survive as Korean president.

We workers around the world, especially workers in the U.S., Japan and Korea, have a huge potential to strengthen international bonds, launch a massive and militant struggle against war on the Korean Peninsula.

Celebrate together the Russian Revolution Centenary and the beginning of a new world revolution!

In Solidarity,