740.00119 Control (Japan)/2–1546

Mr. Max W. Bishop, of the Office of the Political Adviser in Japan, to the Secretary of State

No. 257

Sir: I have the honor to forward as an enclosure an analysis84 of the left-wing faction of the Social Democratic Party, prepared in the General Headquarters, United States Army Forces, Pacific.

The enclosure is an excellent presentation of one of the major problems facing the leadership of the Social Democratic Party. It describes the left-wing faction as a loosely organized group of traditional leftist-socialist elements who, with their small former Labor-Farmer Party membership as a spearhead, are enabled to infiltrate the Social Democratic Party. According to the analysis, the aim of the left-wing faction appears to be to effect a radical change in the character of the Social Democratic Party by transforming it into a militant proletarian party. By espousal of the Communist-proposed “popular front” program, the left-wing in effect constitutes an arm of the Communists within the Social Democratic Party, thus embarrassing the leadership of the latter.

It is evident that the Social Democratic leadership is faced with the prospect of an eventual schism, caused primarily by conflicting personalities and differences of ideological views. It would appear that the Cabinet’s clarification of policy regarding SCAP’s purge directive of January 4, as announced on February 9, will further increase the relative influence of the left-wing faction through the probable elimination of several influential right-wing members.

Interviews with five unaffected right-wing members of the Central Executive Committee have brought forth further information concerning this factional strife. These members stated that some fifteen percent of the 110 members of the Central Executive Committee, and four of the thirteen members of the Standing Executive Committee are under Communist influence. (This represents a far larger proportion than would be justified, as yet, by the relative proportion of the rank and file who espouse Communist theories.) The Communist-influenced members of the latter committee were named as Kato Kanju, [Page 141] Mizutani Chosaburo, Suzuki Mosaburo, and Kuroda Hisao. The right-wing members interviewed evinced considerable sensitivity to and irritation at implications concerning their motives as portrayed in the leftist press. They sensed a plot on the part of the Communists to infiltrate the rank and file of unions controlled by right-wing members, with the object of seizing eventual control of the Social Democratic Party. They stated that the leadership of the Party would be strengthened by a clear-cut victory at the polls, an eventuality which appears less likely if the Cabinet’s announced policy regarding implementation of the January 4 directive is literally enforced.

Respectfully yours,

Max W. Bishop

Foreign Service Officer
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