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Asian Communism and the “Reverse Course”. American Occupation. Initial Purposes Disarmament Democratization Conduct MacArthur as SCAP Thin US layer Use Japanese bureaucracy Contrast with Iraq. Shift in US Thinking. Interplay of foreign/domestic issues Foreign factors

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Presentation Transcript
american occupation
American Occupation
  • Initial Purposes
    • Disarmament
    • Democratization
  • Conduct
    • MacArthur as SCAP
    • Thin US layer
    • Use Japanese bureaucracy
  • Contrast with Iraq
shift in us thinking
Shift in US Thinking
  • Interplay of foreign/domestic issues
  • Foreign factors
    • Fear of Soviet Communism
    • Rise of Mao and CCP in China
    • North/South split in Korea
    • Southeast Asia as well
us shift cont
US Shift (Cont)
  • Domestic Factors (partial response to foreign “threat’)
    • Cost factors in Occupation
    • Republican criticism of Truman administration
    • China Lobby
    • Ultimately, McCarthyism
upshot
Upshot
  • US change
    • From idealistic democratic Japan
    • To a renewed and economically viable Japan
  • “Bulwark of democracy” in Asia
  • Requires rebuilding and not reforming
reverse course
Reverse Course
  • Breath of fresh air for conservatives
    • Shock of purge of government and business leaders, constitution, growth of left
  • Disappointment of left
    • Struggle into 1960s, effecting student movement, large segment of society
  • Seeds of postwar system
    • The Japan with which we are familiar
  • Shift unmistakable by 1948
    • Pronounced after Mao’s victory in 1949
political implications
Political Implications
  • Depurging of right
    • Many returned to civil, political life
    • Kishi Nobusuke most famous example
  • Now, “Red Purge”
    • Thousands fired from labor unions, businesses
    • Many jailed
    • Especially hurt labor
conservative revival
Conservative Revival
  • Left-wing coalition governments lose out
  • Yoshida Shigeru in power 1948-1954
    • Established the conservative political base, still unbroken
    • Cemented US-Japan relationship
  • Sticking point: Article IX
economic implications
Economic Implications
  • Dodge Line adopted to facilitate revival
  • 3/19/49 Joseph M. Dodge in Japan
    • Stem inflation, balance budget
    • Reduce money supply
    • Set 360 yen to dollar
  • Bitterly opposed
    • 500,000 lost jobs
    • Deflation
  • But successful in stabilizing economy
zaibatsu policy reversal
Zaibatsu Policy Reversal
  • No longer attacked:

cosmetic changes in ownership patterns

  • Still around today (keiretsu), neo-zaibatsu
  • Irony: great US business support for not breaking up zaibatsu
japanese labor
Japanese Labor
  • Shift from SCAP pro-labor stance
    • MacArthur forbids

May Day demo ‘47

    • Labor loses support of SCAP and Japan
    • Never becomes a political force in Japan
  • Conservative gov’t.

repression

key role of korean war 1950 1953
Key Role of Korean War, 1950-1953
  • June 1950:National Police Force of 75,000 (later SDF)
  • Helped speed San

Francisco Treaty

Sept. 8, 1951

  • “Gift from the Gods”
    • Economic boom
ending the occupation
Ending the Occupation
  • Occupation ends formally 4/28/52
    • De facto earlier as

SCAP role ceased due to war

  • Soon followed by US-Japan Security Treaty
    • Japan as US client
    • US bases in Japan
    • Nuclear umbrella
assessing the occupation i
Assessing the Occupation I
  • Mixed review
  • Better than anyone expected
  • Uniqueness of the experiment
    • Compare with Iraq?
    • Confidence/arrogance of US
  • An unintended consequence
    • Founding fathers of Japanolgy
    • Like Peace Corps and Mormon missions
assessment ii
Assessment II
  • Positive side:
    • Constitution—no amendments to a foreign constitution
    • Land Reform—support for LDP
  • Negative:
    • Zaibatsu busting—Mitsubishi et al still with us
assessment ii1
Assessment II
  • Mixed assessment:
    • Education
    • Labor
    • Local government
  • Economic recovery still stunning
  • The human connection still stands out Popcorn on the Ginza and “Sayonara”
  • Question for the semester: How democratic is Japan? What is the US credit/blame for that?