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Red Hatred for Movement to Protect Japan

IFVOC calligraphy

The origin of half a century with fierce persecution is simply red hatred for movement working to protect Japan and provide clear alternative to communism

Toshikazu Masubuchi on red hatred for movement
Toshikazu Masubuchi. Photo: Bitter Winter

Bitter Winter, the online magazine for human rights and religious freedom, published as a series of three articles a report titled “The Unification Church Case in Japan: A Politician Speaks Up.” It was written by a member of the Liberal Democratic Party (LDP), Toshikazu Masubuchi, who served as speaker of Tochigi Prefectural Assembly 1991-2011.

On 28th February 2024, Bitter Winter published the 2nd of its 3 articles. It was headlined “Spies and Fake News”. There, Masubuchi explains how an initiative by the International Federation for Victory Over Communism (IFVOC), founded by Sun Myung Moon, against foreign spies was one of the main reasons the political left of Japan kept attacking his movement.

Stanislav Levchenko. Photo: Bitter Winter

On part 1 in Bitter Winter series, part 2b, part 3a, part 3b

Even though Japan was a liberal democracy, it earned the reputation of being a “spy haven” because it lacked laws to prevent espionage. Masubuchi tells about KGB major Stanislav Levchenko, a former Soviet agent who worked four years as a spy in Japan, before he defected to the USA in 1979 and bore witness in front of the U.S. House Intelligence Committee. He stated that the absence of laws against espionage in Japan facilitated his work.

Seiichi Katsumata
Spying for the Soviet Union: Seiichi Katsumata (勝間田 清一), leader of Japan Socialist Party 1967-1968. Photo: 文藝春秋 / Wikimedia Commons. Public domain image.

Levchenko disclosed the names of no less than 200 Japanese politicians and journalists who were involved in espionage activities. Those included leading members of the Japan Socialist Party like Seiichi Katsumata (勝間田 清一 – its leader 1967-1968), Shigeru Ito (chairman of the Policy Deliberation Council), and Tamotsu Sato (secretariat chief of the Socialist Association). Levchenko’s disclosure of the huge Japanese spy network was truly significant.

Also, North Korean agents worked as spies in Japan, and the lack of laws preventing espionage made it impossible for the police to counter it effectively. If anti-espionage laws had been in place, occurrences such as North Korea’s abduction of Japanese citizens from 1977 to 1983 could have been avoided. Given Japan’s advanced industrial status, protecting its industries from industrial espionage was also crucial.

In response to these national security concerns, the International Federation for Victory Over Communism (IFVOC), founded by Sun Myung Moon, sought the backing from resource persons across various fields – politicians, businessmen, academics, journalists, lawyers, diplomats, religious leaders, and individuals with security experience – in order to set up the “Spy Prevention Law Enactment Citizens Conference”.

Local branches were formed in all prefectures to raise awareness for the introduction of the law. The “Spy Prevention Law Enactment Promotion Citizens Conference” was established in February 1979 with Seiichi Uno (1910-2008), a professor emeritus at the University of Tokyo, as chairman. A meeting of the founding members took place at Sankei Hall in Tokyo with 300 scholars, intellectuals, and businessmen attending.

Nobusuke Kishi in 1961
Nobusuke Kishi  (岸 信介) 15th June 1961. Photo: Wikimedia Commons. Public domain image. Cropped

Five years later, in April 1984, a large meeting was convened at the National Diet Building. About 300 lawmakers and experts came together and discussed the formation of the “Parliamentarians and Experts Discussion Group for the Promotion of the Spy Prevention Law,” chaired by Nobusuke Kishi (1896-1987), Prime Minister 1957-1960.

Toshikazu Masubuchi describes his work to promote the adoption of an “Opinion Statement Calling for the Enactment of the Spy Prevention Law” in the Tochigi Prefectural Assembly on 25th March 1982. A representative from the Socialist Party was strongly against it and tried to use so-called obstructive tactics. The heated debate lasted until midnight, when a resolution in favour of the opinion statement was at last passed. Masubuchi became secretary-general of the Tochigi prefecture branch of the IFVOC and traveled throughout the prefecture delivering speeches.

Law enforcement officials in charge of national and public security commended this initiative warmly. A subcommittee consisting of “security professionals” within the movement that supported the enactment of the anti-spy law included former top officials such as a former head of the National Police Agency and former top officials of the Tokyo Metropolitan Police.

Despite discussions in the Diet regarding the enactment of the Espionage Prevention Bill, it did not gain sufficient backing. No action was taken on serious national security concerns.

Continued in part 2b, part 3a, part 3b.

On part 1 in Bitter Winter series

Featured image above: Sun Myung Moon writing calligraphy at the founding of the International Federation for Victory over Communism (IFVOC) 13th January 1968 in Cheongpa, Seoul, South Korea. Photo: IFVOC

More about red hatred for movement: Media/Legal Expert: Communism Behind Persecution

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And yet more about red hatred for movement: New Admission by Top Japanese Communist

And still more about red hatred for movement: Japan: Communist Anti-Religious View in Media

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