JCP CC 3rd Plenum sets out strategy for victories in national and local elections

The Japanese Communist Party Central Committee held its Third Plenum at its head office on January 4 in order to ensure victories in the nationwide simultaneous local elections slated for this spring and the House of Councilors election this summer. It was the first time for the JCP to hold a national meeting immediately after the New Year holidays.

JCP Chair Shii Kazuo gave the Executive Committee report that dealt with (i) the developments of domestic and international situations and the JCP's role, (ii) new characteristics and focal points of confrontation in local politics, and (iii) the election campaign based on the organizational policy of "branches as the key players" to ensure victories.

JCP prefectural and district committee chairs who were to meet on January 5 and 6 attended the plenum. Shii's Executive Committee report was broadcast live across the nation via communications satellite.

Shii pointed out that the Liberal Democratic Party politics' three aberrations (namely, justifying the past war of aggression, always acting at the U.S. beck and call, and always acting in the interests of large corporations), which the JCP 24th Congress a year ago fully analyzed and denounced, have reached a deadend in every field. Referring to the JCP's struggles, he stressed that the failure of the LDP politics has been giving rise to the changes in political currents, and proposed policies to bring about positive changes in the situation.

On the recognition of history, Shii pointed out that Prime Minister Abe Shinzo officially stated that he endorses the statements made by then Prime Minister Murayama Tomiichi in 1995 expressing apology and remorse for "Japan's aggression and colonial rule" and by then Chief Cabinet Secretary Kono Yohei in 1993 admitting the Japanese Army's involvement in the "comfort women" question during the war and expressing apology and remorse.

However, Shii stated, "[Abe's statement] alone does not end the issue." Shii demanded that Abe refrain from taking actions that go against his own statement and that Abe seriously carry out the task of sharing the basis of historical recognition with China and South Korea that he agreed to at the summit talks with Chinese and South Korean leaders.

Shii took a serious view of Abe's dangerous statement declaring his intention to revise the Constitution during his tenure. At the same time, Shii stressed that Abe's stance will inevitably deepen contradictions with the public who long for peace and run counter to the world current in the 21st century.

In the two nationwide elections, the JCP aims at (i) strengthening the force to squarely confront with reactionary LDP policies of undermining peace and deteriorating living conditions, and (ii) pushing back the scheme to establish a "two party system" and fundamentally change the structure of politics, Shii emphasized.

Shii said it is important to correctly understand the Democratic Party of Japan today. He pointed out that the DPJ has merged into the same political current as the LDP in calling for an adverse revision of the Constitution, an increase in the consumption tax rate, and an adverse change in the electoral system through its merger with the Liberal Party in October, 2003, and that the DPJ has already degenerated into just "another conservative party" that enjoys the confidence of business circles and the United States.

In the election campaign in October 2003, the JCP stated, "A major structural change in Japan's politics has taken place," pointing out that the DPJ's degeneration was brought about at the initiative of business circles. Shii noted that this analysis by the JCP has been proved to be correct by the developments in the past three years.

Shii stated, "Today, the DPJ shares the three aberrations of the LDP politics and cannot be regarded as better than the LDP in any way as long as the fundamentals of politics are concerned."

Shii emphasized the focal point of the two nationwide elections lies in whether or not the JCP, the party that always works in the interests of the public and maintains a principled stance to fundamentally challenge LDP politics, will increase its representatives in the Diet and local assemblies.

Shii described the political picture in local politics as basically the JCP versus the "all-are-the-ruling-parties setup" in which the LDP, Komei, and DPJ parties work together as ruling parties.

In this situation, he stressed, elections are fought on the following issues: (i) whether to defend or to abandon the local government role as an "institution to serve residents' well-being"; (ii) whether to accept a new type of "upside-down politics" that prioritize favoring large corporations with huge amount of subsidies; (iii) whether to combat tax-eating fraud and corruption; and (iv) whether to protect residents and communities from the central government's attempt to destroy local governments and communities. Shii emphasized that in light of these points at issue, JCP members in local assemblies show their indisputable value.

Shii emphasized the need to (i) take a stronger political posture than any other party in order to win election battles expected to be fiercer than ever, (ii) aggressively fight elections in order to meet new conditions arising from municipal mergers, and (iii) engage in the nationwide simultaneous local elections and the House of Councilors election integrating them into one single battle.

Aiming at ensuring victories in the fierce contests, Shii proposed to fulfill by March 8, one month before the simultaneous local elections, the following tasks: the whole party will carry out grass-roots publicity campaigns and organizational activities; all JCP prefectural and district committees and branches increase the readership of Akahata daily and Sunday editions over the level at the previous simultaneous local elections; and every branch attract new members so that it can fight elections with greater enthusiasm.

Shii emphasized that to this end, it is crucially important to fully develop the JCP election campaign activities based on the principle of "branches as the key players." He explained the lessons drawn from activities during last year and the necessary improvements to be achieved in the activities of branches and committees.

Shii stated, "By making the whole party feel confident in the achievements gained during the last year, let us carry out the activities to bring about the victories in the coming two major elections."

In the meeting, 18 speakers took the floor, and Shii made the concluding remarks. The 3rd CC Plenum unanimously adopted the executive committee report and the concluding remarks.

- Akahata, January 5, 2007

The Central Committee of the Japanese Communist Party
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