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it is not difficult to understand the as- ment was made to the United States cendancy of the militarists in Japanese and her European allies by the constipolitics. For example, nearly all the tutional Government, as represented by members of the military clique belong Premier Hara. I have good reason to to the Chosun clan, while the navy believe that, in making this promise, clique is recruited from the Satsuma the Government was entirely sincere clan. The acknowledged leader of them and that it fully intended to carry out all, the uncrowned ruler of Japan, is the evacuation. But the unseen governPrince Yamagata, himself a soldier and ment — by which is meant the militara field-marshal. The Emperor, feeble ist party — wished Japan to remain in health and mind, in spite of the pro- in Siberia, for reasons of its own. It found veneration in which he is still wanted territory in that region, - terheld by the great mass of his subjects, ritory rich in mines and forests, and is a ruler only in name.
here was an easy way to get it. I do Of the nine members of the Cabinet, not know precisely what procedure was two the Minister of War and the followed by the militarists, of course; Minister of Marine — are not answer- but I imagine that it was something able for their actions to the Premier, like this. Prince Yamagata, speaking but are responsible only to the Em- with the authority of the Emperor, inperor - which, translated, means the formed his son-in-law, the Minister of Elder Statesmen. As a result of this War, that the occupation of Siberia was anomalous situation, these two minis- to be continued; whereupon the Minters can, and frequently do, defy the ister of War, presumably without the Premier and block legislation. In fact, consent of the Premier, and quite posa former Prime Minister resigned be- sibly without his knowledge, instead cause he was unable to find men for of withdrawing the Siberian garrisons, these portfolios who would consent to reinforced them. It thus being made carry out his policies. As the members impossible for the constitutional Govof the Cabinet are appointed by the ernment to keep the agreement it had Emperor, instead of, as is the custom made, Premier Hara, in order to save in most European countries, by the his face,' as they say in the East, was Premier, it is self-evident that no one forced to explain his failure to withcould obtain the portfolio of war or of draw the troops by asserting that it marine unless he was persona gratis- had been found necessary to retain sima to the militarist party. This them in Siberia temporarily in order closest of close corporations is still to guard Japan from Bolshevist attacks. further bound together by family ties, Result: loss of confidence by the other the present Minister of War, Major- powers in Japan's promises. General Giichi Tanaka, being a son-in- The effect on foreign opinion of such law of Prince Yamagata.
usurpation of power by the invisible It is this curious relic of feudal times government is recognized by the liberwhich is responsible for those failures al element in Japan; as witness a recent to keep her agreements which have editorial in the Yomi-Yuri Shimbun: done so much to lose for Japan the con- 'It is regrettable that the declarafidence of other nations. Japan's fail- tions of the Japanese Government are ure to abide by her promise to evacuate often not taken seriously. The Powers Siberia upon the withdrawal of the regard Japan as a country that does American and other Allied troops pro- not mean what it says. The most imvides a case in point. This commit- portant reasons for this will be found in the actions of the militarists, whose ut- to the Premier to explain as best he can. terances are the cause of the Govern- There
you have the real reason why Jament's attitude being misunderstood pan seems so often to violate her treaty abroad. Unless the militarist evil is obligations. She is not insincere in makstamped out, a hundred declarations ing them. The men who make them are disavowing territorial ambitions will not the men who break them: not be able to convince the Powers.' This continued exercise of irrespon
The militarists placed the Govern- sible authority by the military party is ment in almost as embarrassing a posi- the most important and the most dantion in Korea last year as in Siberia. gerous factor in the whole Japanese Premier Hara, stirred to action by the question. Until the invisible and irreexcesses of the Japanese troops, issued sponsible powers behind the throne are orders that the military forces in Korea suppressed in favor of the constitushould be subordinated to the civil tional Government, there can be no real authorities; but the military, backed by hope of a satisfactory understanding the unseen government, virtually ig- between Japan and the United States. nored these orders, the newly appointed A democracy like ours cannot do busiGovernor-General, Baron Saito, being ness with a government that is masked; unable to enforce his commands where we must know with whom we are dealthe military were concerned. Should ing. If Japan sincerely desires the the Prime Minister resent such at- friendship of the United States, then tempts to block the policy of the Gov- she must give valid assurances that the ernment, and appeal to the Emperor, declared policies of her Government he would really be appealing to the will henceforward be binding on her Elder Statesmen, who, as I have ex- military, as well as her civil agents. plained, stand between the Emperor and the Cabinet. Or, should the Diet
I attempt to put a check on the militarists by refusing to pass the army ap- Although close observers have of propriations, it would have no effect on late detected a noticeable change in the the situation, for in such a case the attitude of the younger generation of budget holds over from the previous Japanese toward the Emperor, who is year. Having direct access to the Em- no longer venerated as he has been by peror and to the funds of the Imperial past generations, and although the Household, which is the richest in the strength of the anti-militarist party is world, the militarists never lack for steadily increasing, to talk glibly, as money. Indeed, when all is said and certain American visitors to Japan done, it is they who hold the purse- have done, of Japanese militarism bestrings. It will be seen, therefore, that ing on its last legs, is to reveal profound the Progressive Premier, Mr. Hara, is ignorance of the actual conditions. If in a trying and none too strong posi- the system of unseen government were tion. The military party and the forces merely transitory, it might readily of reaction typified by Prince Yama- yield before the growth of education gata have too much power for him. The and enlightened opinion. But it is not Premier, speaking for the Government transitory. Its tentacles reach deep and through the Minister of Foreign into the traditions of the Empire. It Affairs, makes commitments to other would be strange, indeed, if the milipowers. The unseen government ig- tarists were not dominant in Japan, nores these commitments and leaves it for the whole history of the nation is
punctuated by wars, feuds, and revolu- great industrial and trading companies tions; it climbed to its present position would be in a position to analyze Japas one of the Great Powers on the guns anese politics, domestic and foreign. of its battleships and the bayonets of Those policies of the Japanese Governits soldiers; it has always been ruled by ment which are usually attributed by military men. The militarism which foreigners to the ambitions of the milipervades the nation is vitalized, more tarists are in reality due to the machiover, by Japan's obsession that she is nations of the capitalists. Here you hemmed in by a ring of enemies. The have the key to the annexation of Kotruth of the matter is that the great rea, to Japanese aggression in Manchumajority of Japanese look to the mili- ria and Siberia, to the unreasonable tarists as the saviors of the Empire. demands made on China, to the opposi
Although the Japanese are gradually tion to the restoration of Shantung. becoming more democratic in their ten- All of those regions are immensely rich dencies, let us not delude ourselves into in natural resources; they offer unlimthinking that the disappearance of ited possibilities for profitable exploitamilitarism is a probability of the not tion. And it is Japanese Big Business far distant future. That it will eventu- which proposes to do the exploiting. ally disappear is as certain as that dawn So, in order to obtain control of the terfollows the dark. But it may take a ritories which it proposes to exploit, it generation, or more. That the militar- has joined forces with the land-hungry ists will remain in the ascendant during militarists. It is the most sinister comthe lifetime of the Elder Statesmen bination of high politics and Big Busithere can be little doubt. Not until ness that the world has ever seen. the grip of those aged dictators has been Dominating Japanese business and relaxed by death is the power of the finance are a few great corporations: militarists likely to wane. Nor is there Mitsui, Mitsubishi, Suzuki, Okura, any certainty that it will wane then; Sumitomo, Kuhara, Takata, Furufor in recent years their power has been kawa. So much larger than the others immensely strengthened by a force that they are in a class by themselves far mightier and more sinister than are the Mitsui and Mitsubishi comthat of the Elder Statesmen. I refer panies, owned respectively by the to the force of organized capital, of Big Mitsui and Iwasaki families. Indeed, Business. As Mr. Nathaniel Peffer, one it is a common saying in Japan that no of the shrewdest and best-informed stu- one knows where Mitsui ends and the dents of Far Eastern politics, has shown, Government begins. Their tentacles it is Big Business that has reinforced sink deep into every phase of national and is keeping in power the unseen life — commercial, industrial, financial, government — the military party. political. They own banks, railways,
Only recently has modern industrial steamship lines, mills, factories, dockJapan awakened to a realization of its yards, mines, forests, plantations, inown strength. But it is now fully alive surance companies, trading corporato the almost unlimited power, the end- tions. They and the leaders of the less possibilities, to be realized by the
unseen government are as intertwined great business interests of the country by marriage, mutual interest, and interjoining hands and working together locking directorates as President Wilson for a common purpose. One who could boasted that the Treaty of Versailles trace, through the political structure of was intertwined with the Covenant of the Empire, the ramifications of the the League of Nations,
Each of these great companies, ac- carefully laid scheme, which has for cording to Mr. Peffer, has its political, its aim the eventual control of all Eastfinancial, or family alliances with the ern Asia. Ostensibly to solve the probleaders of the unseen government.
lems with which she has been conMarquis Okuma, one of the Elder fronted by her amazing increase in Statesmen, is related by marriage to the population and production, but in Iwasakis, who, as I have said, own the reality to gratify the ambitions of the great house of Mitsubishi. The same militaristic-financial clique, Japan has house is connected with the opposition embarked on a campaign of worldparty through its leader, Viscount Kato, expansion and
expansion and exploitation. Conwho is Baron Iwasaki's son-in-law. vinced that she requires a colonial emAnother of the Elder Statesmen, Mar- pire in her business, she has set out to quis Matsukata, is adviser to one of build one as she would build a bridge these political dynasties. The late Mar- or a dry-dock. The fact that she had quis Inoue, who held in turn the port- nothing, or next to nothing, to start with folios of agriculture and commerce, did not worry her at all. Having once home affairs, finance, and foreign af- made up her mind that the realization fairs, was closely connected with the of her political, economic, and territohouse of Mitsui. The late Field-Mar- rial ambitions necessitated the acquire shal Terauchi, at one time Prime Min- ment of overseas dominions, she has ister of Japan and one of the foremost permitted nothing to stand in the way leaders of the military party, was equal- of her getting them. In other words, ly close to Okura, a relationship which wherever an excuse can be provided explains that house's success in ob- for raising a flagstaff, whether on an taining army contracts and concessions ice-floe in the Arctic or an island in the on the mainland of Asia. And so with Pacific, there the Rising Sun flag shall the highest military men of the Empire flutter; wherever trade is to be found, and the leading statesmen of both po
there Yokohama cargo-boats shall drop litical parties. Each has his relation- their anchors, there Osaka engines ship to some great financial house, to shall thunder over Kobe rails, there some captain of industry. Big Business Kyoto silks and Nagoya cottons shall uses these affiliations with the militar- be sold by merchants speaking the lanists to obtain for its schemes the sup- guage of Nippon. It is a scheme asport of the unseen government, which tounding by its very vastness, as meis enormously strengthened by the affili- thodically planned and systematically ations of the militarists with Big Busi- conducted as an American presidential ness. It is like a cross-ruff at bridge. campaign; and already, thanks to
Japanese audacity, aggressiveness, and III
perseverance, backed up by Japanese
banks, battleships, and bayonets, it is ‘Japan's future lies oversea. In much nearer realization than the world those four words is found the policy of imagines. the military-financial combination that In China, Siberia, and the Philiprules Japan. The annexation of For- pines, in California, Canada, and Mexmosa and Korea and Sakhalin, the oc- ico, in the East Indies, Australia, and cupation of Manchuria and Siberia and New Zealand, on three continents and Shantung, are not, as the world sup- on all the islands of the Eastern seas, poses, examples of haphazard land- Japanese merchants and Japanese grabbing, but phases of a vast and money are working twenty-four hours a day, building up that overseas em- announce that, in Siberia or China, pire of which the financiers and the Japanese interests have been endanmilitarists dream. The activities of gered or Japanese dignity affronted; Japan's outposts of commerce and the newspapers controlled by Big Busifinance are as varied as commerce and ness inflame the national resentment; finance themselves. Their voices are the heads of the invisible government, heard in every Eastern market-place; speaking with the authority of the their footsteps resound in every avenue Emperor, issue the necessary orders of Oriental endeavor. Their mines in to the Ministers of War and Marine; Siberia and China and Manchuria and before the country in question rival the cave of Al-ed-Din. The rail- awakens to a realization of what is hapways that converge on Peking from the pening, Japanese transports are at north and east, the great trunk-line anchor in her harbors and Japanese across Manchuria, and the eastern troops are disembarking on her soil. section of the trans-Siberian system Before they are withdrawn, — if they are already in their hands. They work are withdrawn, — Japan usually suctea-plantations in China, coffee-plan- ceeds in extorting a concession to build tations in Java, rubber-plantations in a railway, or to work a coal-field, or to Malaya, cocoanut-plantations in Bor- underwrite a loan, or a ninety-nineneo, hemp-plantations in the Philip year lease of a harbor which can be pines, spice-plantations in the Celebes, converted into a naval base, or the sugar-plantations in Hawaii, prune- cession of a more or less valuable strip orchards in California, apple-orchards of territory — and so the work of in Oregon, coal-mines in Manchuria, building up an overseas empire goes gold-mines in Korea, forests in Siberia, merrily and steadily on. fisheries in Kamchatka. Their argo- Now this steady territorial expansion sies, flying the house-flags of the Toyo - or, rather, the aggressive militarism Kisen Kaisha, the Nippon Yusen that has produced it — has naturally Kaisha, the Osaka Shosen Kaisha, and aroused suspicion abroad of Japan's ina score of other lines, bear Japanese tentions. In less than a quarter of a cengoods to Japanese traders on all the sea- tury the area of the Empire has grown boards of the Orient, while Japanese from 148,000 to 261,000 square miles. warships are constantly a-prowl, all And virtually every foot of this great terup and down the Eastern seas, ready ritory has been won by the sword. We to protect the interests thus created have seen Formosa and the Pescadores by the menace of their guns.
filched, as spoils of war, from a helpless In regions where Japanese banks are China. We have witnessed the rape of in control and Japanese settlers abound, Korea. We have observed Manchuria it is seldom difficult for Japan to find become Japanese in fact, if not in name. an excuse for aggression. It may be We have watched first Southern and that a Japanese settler is mistreated now Northern Sakhalin brought under or a Japanese consul insulted, or that the rule of Tokyo. We have seen the a Japanese bank has difficulty in col. Rising Sun flag hoisted over Kiaolecting its debts. So the slim cables chow, the Marshalls, and the Caroflash the complaint to Tokyo; there lines. We have noted Japan's relucare secret consultations between the tance to withdraw from Shantung or to militaristic leaders and the chieftains permit the neutralization of Yap. We of Big Business; a spokesman of the have watched the armies of Nippon unseen government rises in the Diet to pushing deeper and deeper into Siberia