Kyuichi Tokuda

Last updated

Kyuichi Tokuda
TOKUDA Kyuichi.jpg
Portrait of Kyuichi Tokuda (ca. 1952)
Chair of the Japanese Communist Party
In office
3 December 1945 14 October 1953
Preceded by Toshihiko Sakai
Succeeded by Sanzo Nosaka
Member of the House of Representatives
for Tokyo 3rd district
In office
4 April 1946 6 June 1950
Personal details
Born(1894-09-12)12 September 1894
Nago, Okinawa Prefecture, Empire of Japan
Died14 October 1953(1953-10-14) (aged 59)
Beijing, China
Political party Japanese Communist Party

Kyuichi Tokuda (徳田 球一, Tokuda Kyūichi, September 12, 1894 - October 14, 1953) [1] was a Japanese politician and first chairman of the Japanese Communist Party from 1945 until his death in 1953.



Kyuichi Tokuda was born in 1894 in Okinawa and became a lawyer following graduation from Nihon University in 1920. [1] He joined the Japanese Communist Party in 1922 and became a member of its Central Committee. [2]

In 1922 Tokuda participated in the formation of the outlawed Japanese Communist Party. He would go on to visit the Soviet Union in both 1925 and 1927; and ran for the Labour-Farmer Party in the first regular election in 1928 (Fukuoka's 3rd district) but ended up being unsuccessful. In March 1928 he was arrested under the suspicion of violating the Peace Preservation Law, and would go on to spend 18 years in prison. From 1934 to 1940, he was imprisoned at Abashiri Prison. [3] [4] Tokuda was discovered and released from prison on October 10, 1945 by French Journalist Robert Guillain who at the time had visited the Fuchu Prison. [1] [2] While in prison, he occupied a cell adjacent to fellow Communist leader Yoshio Shiga. [5] Upon his release, he was reportedly hoisted to the shoulders of a crowd of Communists and Koreans chanting anti-imperial messages. [6]

After World War II, he was elected to the House of Representatives in the general election of 1946 along with his cousin, Senzo Nosaka, who had returned from the Republic of China. In the same year he married his cousin Kosaku's widow, Tatsu Tokuda (formerly known as Kanehara). Kyuchi Tokuda was involved in the 1947 general strike and In 1948, he survived an assassination attempt by a dynamite-laden soda bottle thrown at his feet while he was giving a speech. [7] By 1950 he was considered the second-in-command of the JCP and a key supporter of party leader Sanzo Nosaka, in the same year his party split internally following criticism by the Comiform . [5] Along with other JCP leaders, he was purged from public office and politics under the Allied occupation. In October of the same year he defected to the PRC from the port of Osaka and organized the Peking Organization. Tokuda would continue to make decisions on the party's general policy from his exile. [1] During his last years in China, he led a "mainstream" faction of the JCP and organized violent operations in Japan through the underground "Free Japan Radio". [8] He died in Beijing and his death was not made public until 1955. A memorial service for Tokuda was held in Beijing on September 13 of the same year, which was attended by 30,000 people.


See also

Related Research Articles

Japanese-American service in World War II

During the early years of World War II, Japanese Americans were forcibly relocated from their homes in the West Coast because military leaders and public opinion combined to fan unproven fears of sabotage. As the war progressed, many of the young Nisei, Japanese immigrants' children who were born with American citizenship, volunteered or were drafted to serve in the United States military. Japanese Americans served in all the branches of the United States Armed Forces, including the United States Merchant Marine. An estimated 33,000 Japanese Americans served in the U.S. military during World War II, of which 20,000 joined the Army. Approximately 800 were killed in action.

Occupation of Japan United States-led Allied occupation of Japan following WWII

The Allied occupation of Japan at the end of World War II was led by the United States, whose President Harry S. Truman appointed General Douglas MacArthur as the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers, with support from the British Commonwealth. Unlike in the occupation of Germany, the Soviet Union had little to no influence over Japan. This foreign presence marks the only time in Japan's history that it has been occupied by a foreign power. At MacArthur's insistence, Emperor Hirohito remained on the imperial throne. The wartime cabinet was replaced with a cabinet acceptable to the Allies and committed to implementing the terms of the Potsdam Declaration, which among other things called for the country to become a parliamentary democracy. Under MacArthur's guidance, the Japanese government introduced sweeping social reforms and implemented economic reforms that recalled American "New Deal" priorities of the 1930s under President Roosevelt. The Japanese constitution was comprehensively overhauled and the Emperor's theoretically vast powers, which for many centuries had been constrained by conventions that had evolved over time, became strictly limited by law. The occupation was ended by the San Francisco Peace Treaty, signed on September 8, 1951, and effective from April 28, 1952, after which Japan's sovereignty – with the exception, until 1972, of the Ryukyu Islands – was fully restored. The occupation of Japan was divided into three phases: the effort to punish and reform Japan; the work to revive the Japanese economy; and the creation of a formal peace treaty and alliance.

Sanzō Nosaka

Sanzō Nosaka was a founder of the Japanese Communist Party (JCP) who worked for periods as a writer, editor, labor organizer, communist agent, politician, and university professor. He was the son of a wealthy Japanese merchant, and attended the prestigious Keio University. While in university, Nosaka became interested in social movements, and joined a moderate labor organization after graduation, working as a research staff member, and as a writer and editor of the organization's magazine. He traveled to Britain in 1919 to study political economy, where he deepened his studies of Marxism and became a confirmed communist. Nosaka was a founding member of the Communist Party of Great Britain, but his activity within British communist circles led to him being deported from Britain in 1921.

Japanese Communist Party Japanese political party

The Japanese Communist Party is a political party in Japan and is one of the largest non-governing communist parties in the world.

The Japanese Communist Party is an anti-revisionist communist party in Japan that was founded in 1980 by former members of the Japan Communist Party (Marxist–Leninist). JCP adheres to Marxism–Leninism and Mao Zedong Thought, as well as the thought of Kyuichi Tokuda ) and Otake Reichirou ). The popular front of the JCP is the Japanese People's Front (日本人民戦線)).

Socialist thought in Imperial Japan

Socialist thought in Imperial Japan appeared during the Meiji period (1868–1912) with the development of numerous relatively short-lived political parties through the early Shōwa period. Left wing parties, whether advocating socialism, Marxism or agrarianism, provoked hostility from the mainstream political parties, oligarchs and military alike, and many were either banned or went underground soon after formation. Although occasionally winning a seat in the lower house of the Diet of Japan, left-socialist parties played little role in the government of the Empire of Japan.

Akiyuki Nosaka was a Japanese novelist, singer, lyricist, and member of the House of Councillors. As a broadcasting writer he used the name Yukio Aki and his alias as a chanson singer was Claude Nosaka.

Kazuo Shii Japanese politician

Kazuo Shii is a Japanese politician and Chairman of the Japanese Communist Party (JCP) since 2000.

Kenji Miyamoto (politician)

Kenji Miyamoto was a Japanese communist politician and Japanese Communist Party (JCP) leader from 1958 until 1977.

Mountain Village Operation Unit

The Mountain Village Operation Unit was an underground organization of the early 1950s under the direction of the Interim Central Directorate of the Japanese Communist Party, an informal group created by the party’s majority Shokanha faction, which sought to foment an armed uprising against the Japanese government and US occupational authorities. The Mountain Village Operation Unit emulated Mao Zedong’s strategy of forming a base of operations in rural villages, but it achieved no successes.

2014 Japanese general election

The 47th general election of members of the House of Representatives of Japan was held on 14 December 2014. Voting took place in all Representatives constituencies of Japan including proportional blocks, in order to appoint Members of Diet to seats in the House of Representatives, the lower house of the National Diet of Japan. As the cabinet resigns in the first post-election Diet session after a general House of Representatives election, the lower house election also led to a new designation election of the prime minister in the Diet, and the appointment of a new cabinet. The turnout in this election is the lowest in Japanese history.

Japanese dissidence in 20th-century Imperial Japan

Japanese dissidence in 20th-century Imperial Japan during World War II covers individual Japanese opponents to the militarist Empire of Japan before and during WWII.

Yoshio Shiga (communist)

Yoshio Shiga was a member of the Japanese Communist Party.

Appeal to the People or An Appeal to the People was a document written by communists in Shōwa era Imperial Japan in Fuchu Prison. It was issued after their release on October 10, 1945, a month after the Surrender of Japan on September 2, 1945.

Political prisoners in Imperial Japan

Political prisoners in Imperial Japan were detained and prosecuted by the government of the Empire of Japan for dissent, attempting to change the national character of Japan, Communist activity, or association with a group whose stated aims included the aforementioned goals. Following the dissolution of the Empire of Japan after World War II, all remaining political prisoners were released by policies issued under the Allied occupation of Japan.

John K. Emmerson

John Kenneth Emmerson was an American diplomat, and specialist on Japan and Northeast Asia.

Fuchū Prison

Fuchū Prison is a prison in Japan. It is located in the city of the Fuchū, Tokyo to the west of the center of Tokyo Metropolis. Before the end of World War II, Fuchū prison held Communist leaders, members of banned religious sects, and leaders of the Korean independence movement.

<i>Eighteen Years in Prison</i>

Eighteen Years in Prison is a Japanese autobiographical book by Kyuichi Tokuda and Yoshio Shiga.


  1. 1 2 3 4 "Tokuda, Kyuichi". Retrieved 2017-04-17.
  2. 1 2 Milorad M. Drachkovitch (December 1, 1986). Biographical Dictionary of the Comintern. Hoover Institution Press. pp. 472–473.
  3. Mitchell, Richard H. (1992). Janus-Faced Justice: Political Criminals in Imperial Japan. University of Hawaii Press. p. 93. ISBN   9780824814106 . Retrieved 2020-10-13.
  4. Ishikawa, Machiko. "Writing the Sense of Loss in the Inner Self: A Narrative of Nakagami Kenji and Nagayama Norioin Late 1960s Tokyo" (PDF). Australian National University. p. 5. Retrieved 2020-10-13.
  5. 1 2 "JAPAN: Red Schism". Time. 1950-05-08. ISSN   0040-781X . Retrieved 2017-04-17.
  6. ""Remove Hirohito" Is Cry Of Freed Jap Communists". Toronto Daily Star. 1945-10-10. Retrieved 2017-04-17.
  7. "Pressure From Left Increases in Japan". The Lewiston Daily Sun. 1948-07-20. Retrieved 2017-04-17.
  8. Masaki, Nobuaki (2016-04-07). "Red-Baiting in 2016 – SNA Japan". Retrieved 2017-04-17.