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HOME  > Past issues  > 2007 March 28 - April 3  > Shii in campaign speeches emphasizes that struggles for great cause will have important bearings on the future
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2007 March 28 - April 3 TOP3 [JCP]

Shii in campaign speeches emphasizes that struggles for great cause will have important bearings on the future

March 27, 2007
The JCP chair spoke about the recent development of the JCP’s opposition party diplomacy and in that connection how important the 85 years of the JCP is as well as the JCP’s current role in national and local politics.

In canvassing for votes for the JCP in the simultaneous local elections and the House of Councilors election, Japanese Communist Party Chair Shii Kazuo is speaking about the recent development of the JCP’s opposition party diplomacy and in that connection how important the 85 years of the JCP is as well as the JCP’s current role in national and local politics. Below are excerpts from Shii’s campaign speeches:

I want to draw your attention to our international relations and diplomacy.

Last September, I visited South Korea and Pakistan, and in January this year, I led a JCP delegation to Vietnam. At every destination I had the impression that in the 21st century the world is moving towards peace and social progress, and that the 85 years of the JCP history has a very important impact in the present-day world.

JCP’s proud history of opposing the war of aggression and colonization at all costs serves as the foundation of our friendship with South Korea

In South Korea, the JCP’s history of opposing the war of aggression and colonization in defiance of the barbarous repression in the prewar days served as the foundation of our friendship with the people of South Korea.

Our first destination in Seoul was the Seodaemun Prison Museum. We offered a wreath to express our respects for the Korean patriots who were killed in the repression at the time. The Seodaemun Prison was a place where Korean patriots were held, tortured and executed by Japanese imperialist rulers. It’s a place that represents the Korean people’s deep sorrow.

In answer to a question raised by South Korean reporters as to why I decided to visit the Seodaemun Prison first, I said: “The Japanese Communist Party was founded in 1922 and soon began to oppose Japan’s colonial rule over Korea in solidarity with Korean patriots who were fighting for national independence. We are proud of this JCP history. I want on behalf of the JCP to express here our respects and condolences for our ‘historic comrades.’ I came to this historic site hoping that the 21st century will witness the beginning of a true friendship between the peoples of South Korea and Japan. Although this is a place that represents Japan’s shameful past, I believe that Japan can make true friends in Asia only by facing up to the past.”

As I stated this, I renewed my respects for JCP predecessors who called for peace in the prewar days. I also felt proud of being a member of the JCP with this history.

South Korean TV stations gave their prime time to a report about my visit to the prison museum, in contrast with the poor coverage by Japanese media. On the next day, I visited the South Korean National Assembly where I had a meeting with National Assembly Speaker Lim Chae Jung. He said, “I got emotional because you visited the place of Korean people’s sorrow and even offered flowers. I want to express my gratitude to you in the name of the people of the Republic of Korea.” These words in turn moved us and filled us with gratitude.

JCP’s sovereign independence that made it possible to fight Soviet hegemony had impact in Pakistan

Next I traveled to Pakistan. In exchanges we had with Pakistani politicians, we found that the JCP’s struggle against Soviet hegemony and interference in defense of sovereign independence, in particular the struggle against the Soviet aggression against Afghanistan in 1979, laid the foundation of friendship between Pakistan and the JCP.

During the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan, refugees, guns, and narcotics flowed into the country, causing many problems. The fact that an influential communist party existed in Japan that firmly opposed the aggression served as the foundation of the Pakistani people’s trust in the JCP.

Exchanges between Pakistan and the Japanese Communist Party have been developing ever since the Pakistani ambassador to Japan learned that the JCP is a party with a history of fighting in defense of sovereign independence. During my visit to Pakistan last year, I found that the JCP history was well known to many politicians.

For example, in my meeting with Pakistani Senate Chairman Mohammedmian Soomro, when I was about to present him with a copy of a brochure introducing the JCP, he began to speak about the JCP.

He said that he had studied about the JCP: Founded in 1922, the JCP experienced great difficulties in the prewar days, and after World War II, the party split, but interference from two large communist parties did not stop the JCP from defending its sovereign independence.

He said that the JCP is a party standing on its own in determining its policy line, opposing the Soviet invasions of both Czechoslovakia and Afghanistan. Mr. Soomro added that he has the deepest respect for the JCP.

There was no need for me to add to his description of the JCP. The fact that the JCP has firmly defended the position of sovereign independence by refusing to succumb to any great-power chauvinists can be well understood by Pakistani people because they are having hard times in their nation-building efforts being carried out in defiance of the pressure and outrageous acts by great powers.

In Vietnam, I found that solidarity in opposition to U.S. war of aggression has relevance today

In my visit to Vietnam in January, I found that the struggle of the JCP and Japanese democratic organizations in solidarity with the Vietnamese people’s anti-U.S. national salvation war opposing U.S. aggression is vivid in the memory of many Vietnamese people. When we visited the War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City, we found in the Japan section many Japanese posters expressing solidarity with the Vietnamese people displayed. We feel that his part of history is remembered today as a history of solidarity of anti-war activists.

In my talks with Vietnamese Prime Minister Nguyen Tan Dung and Communist Party of Vietnam General Secretary Nong Duc Manh, both of them opened their remarks by expressing their gratitude to the Japanese Communist Party and people saying, “We will never forget your solidarity with the Vietnamese people’s Anti-U.S. National Salvation struggle.”

In our exchanges with young people in Vietnam, they confided their respect for the JCP for its anti-war stance. I had an occasion to give a lecture at Hanoi University, and I happened to say that when young, I used to sing with others the Free Vietnam March. I should not have said that I still remember all the lyrics because the students asked me to sing the song right then and there. I could only remember the first part, and found out that these young people knew the melody very well. They gave me a warm round of applause.

We also visited the Cu Chi Tunnels in the suburbs of Ho Chi Minh City. It is a historical site where the National Front for the Liberation of Vietnam created a network of tunnels in the war against the U.S. aggressors. The U.S. forces at that time attempted to turn Cu Chi into a land of death by spraying defoliants and cutting down all the trees there. Determined to refuse to give in, people in Cu Chi dug 250 kilometers of tunnels by hand. The network of tunnels is equipped with all the daily necessities: the command headquarters, places for recreation, sleep, and dining, as well as medical clinics. I asked Huynh Van Chia, our guide and former soldier, how they supplied water. He said that the NFL dug deep wells inside the tunnels to pump up underground water. I asked how food was supplied. He said that they grew some vegetables for themselves and were helped by nearby residents. I further asked about weapons supplies. The answer was that the NFL waged war using weapons that they took from U.S. forces. Huynh Van Chia jokingly said, “U.S. forces were indispensable to us.”

In and around the tunnels, 12,000 out of the 18,000 Vietnamese soldiers there died, and many others were seriously injured or traumatized. Huynh Van Chia lost one arm there. I said, “We want to express our deepest respect for the indomitable courage of the Vietnamese people.” Huynh Van Chia said, “I am sure you would have struggled just as we did, if you were in the same position.” I think that this is the highest compliment to and an expression of the Vietnamese people’s trust in the JCP.

Take confidence in JCP history and its Program and we shall win

The history of the JCP can be summed up as one of sufferings and hardships. There are times in which we face difficulties or in which we will be forced to retreat. The JCP cannot count on any outside support to facilitate easy progress. This is because the JCP always works to eliminate political obstacles that stand in the way of Japan’s true social development. Just because the JCP is unyielding in its principles, other political forces have carried out various persecutions, attacks and containment policies out of fear of further JCP progress. The history of the JCP shows that the party has always faced up to adversities, overcame them, and achieved progress.

A struggle based on a just cause will inevitably show its value in the future. This is clear from the fact that the undaunted prewar JCP struggle against Japan’s war of aggression, the postwar struggle for sovereign independence, and the current struggle in international solidarity against war and for peace is demonstrating its strength everywhere in the world today.

We will take confidence in the history of the JCP and the JCP Program calling for a Japan in which the people are the protagonists. We will do our utmost in our campaigning in the series of upcoming elections, so we can record new victories in JCP history. I ask you to extend your great support to the JCP.
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