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April 03, 1987 - Image 34

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-04-03

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

PURELY COMMENTARY

Poisonous Protocols

Continued from Page 2

spread are summarized as follows in
Newsweek's unsigned article:
The Japanese are victims of
their own success. Their exports
have sold so well that the value
of the yen soared, making their
products more expensive and
forcing record layoffs. To many
Japanese, it is both unfair and
puzzling — and a simple expla-
nation is sweeping the country:
it's all the fault of the Jews. A
book entitled If You Understand
the Jews You Can Comprehend the
World: 1990 Scenario for the 'Final
Economic War' is a best seller at
580,000 copies. The "Jewish
corners" of bookstores carry
more than 50 sensational works,
their covers including a
bearded Chasidic elder, a grasp-
ing Jew toting moneybags and a
conspiratorial montage of Le-
nin, Henry Kissinger and Char-
lie Chaplin.
The books revive the myth
that Jews control international
finance. Then they add the local
angle: Jews carry a grudge
against Japan because of its
former alliance with the Nazis,
so they make the yen rise. "If
You Understand" also sees the
Jews behind South Korea's
challenge to Japan's industries
and behind the boom in comic .
books and television popular
among the young — fueling an-
other national fear that the next
generation won't work as hard
as their elders.
Leaders of Japan's 1,000-
member Jewish community,
mostly foreigners, say they do
not feel persecuted. Indeed, an
undercurrent of admiration
runs through Japan's interpre-
tation of anti-Semitism. How
else to explain the popularity of
Make -Money by Investing in
Stocks That Interest the Jews?
Ironically, the very same terms
of criticism' are currently used
against the world: that they are
shrewd economic animals. But
if the Japanese could fall for
one of the oldest canards in
Western culture, perhaps
they're not as shrewd as the
rest of the world thinks.

The Clyde Haberman report in the
New York Times is more extensive. It
goes into many details. It refers to
charges of Jewish domination. It reve-
als that every conceivable canard is
being revived with Jews exceedingly
victimized. Here is the introductory re-
velation by Haberman:
One of Japan's more popu-
lar authors of the last few
months is an Osaka man who
argues that the country's recent
economic problems are a result
of a conspiracy by "interna-
tional Jewish capital."
Hundreds of thousands of
Japanese readers have made
best sellers of two books in
which the writer, Masami Uno,
asserts that Jews form a
"behind-the-scenes nation" con-
trolling major American corpo-
rations. He says the corpora-
tions include IBM, General
Motors, Ford, Chrysler,
Standard Oil, Exxon and AT&T.

,

34

Friday, April 3, 1987

"America is a Jewish na-
tion," Mr. Uno writes.
He „ also says Jewish-
dominated interests have begun
"a targeted bashing of Japan,"
engineering the recent surge in
the yen's value against the dol-
lar. Japanese leaders say the
strong yen is responsible for the
country's economic slowdown,
which has led to layoffs in
export-oriented industries.
Mr. Uno's popularity has
produced expressions of con-
cern from Jewish residents in
Tokyo and from the Israeli Em-
bassy, which made an oral pro-
test to the Japanese Foreign
Ministry.
Jewish spokesmen in To-
kyo, all non-Japanese, say they
are also troubled by other
books and articles about Jews
that have recently appeared in
bookstores. Several dwell on
conspiracy theories. They in-
clude book titles like "The
Jewish Plan for conquest of the
World" and "How to Read the
Hidden Meaning of Jewish Pro-
tocol."
The entire March issue of a
magazine called History Textbook
is devoted to Jewish themes under
the heading "Mysterious Judea."
Articles assert that Jews were be-
hind the Watergate scandal and
the Lockheed Aircraft bribery case
that led to the criminal conviction
of a former Japanese Prime Minis-
ter, Kakuei Tanaka. .
One book, in circulation
since 1984, is called The Secret of
Jewish Power to Control the
World. It was written by a
member of Parliament's upper
house, Eisaburo Saito. Another
book, published last month, of-
fers investment tips and has lit-
tle to do with Jewish matters.
Yet its title is Make Money With
Stocks the Jews Aim At.
"The idea is that all Jews
are very rich, all Jews are very
clever," the Israeli diplomat
said. "Some of them make a
very clever connection of Jews
to the economic problems of
Japan. This is a great danger. It
is the same sort of argument
that the Germans used in the
1930s."
Mr. Uno, the most popular
of the authors, describes himself
as a Christian fundamentalist
and' head of an Osaka-based -
organization called the Middle
East Problems Research Center.
In an interview, he said he had
intended no anti-Semitism.
Adding insult to injury are the
views of authors and publishers, the ef-
fort to reduce the menacing effects of
the published works. But they also
show that 82 books with "Jews" in the
titles have vast readership. They show
the extent of the issues resorted to with
Jews as the formulators or fabricators
of the evils dealt with and it is difficult
to imagine that hate vibrating falls on
deaf ears. Therefore -these facts related
by Haberman must be taken into con-
sideration:

Uno said his real purpose
was to acquaint readers with
religion and prophecy, he said,
adding, "I think my books are

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

very useful for Japanese to
understand themselves and
their lives."
According to his publisher,
Tokuma Shoten, the two books,
both paperback originals, have
sold a total of 650,000 copies.
The first book in particular has
sold briskly among
businessmen, and according to
the country's largest news-
paper, Yomiuri Shimbun, it is
well read among Bank of Japan
officials.
In If You Understand Judea,
You Can Understand the World,
Mr. Uno says Jews caused the
Great Depression of the 1930s
and are plotting a second one
for 1990. Published in March, it
has sold 400,000 copies.
The second book, If You
Understand Judea, You Can
Understand Japan, came out in
November. Its author says the
scope of the killing of Jews in
World War II was exaggerated.
"I think Mr. Uno's book is
very bad, but I don't think it
has much influence," said
Shichihei Yamamoto, who
under the pseudonym of Isiah
Ben Dasan wrote a best-seller
17 years ago called The Japanese
and the Jews. His book has sold
three million copies.
Mr. Yamamoto and others
insist that the driving force be-
hind Mr. Uno's success is not so
much his emphasis on Jews but
rather his linkage of the subject
to Japan's economic concerns.
As Mr. Yamamoto's own
success attests, there is a fasci-
nation with Jews among some
Japanese. According to Tokyo
Shuppan Hanbai, a major dis-
tributor, 82 Japanese books
with the word "Jew" in the title
are in circulation.
Some scholars date the
interest from the Russo-
Japanese War of 1904-95, in
which an American banker,
Jacob Schiff, who was Jewish,
helped raise money for Japan. '
In World War II, when
Japan was an ally of Nazi Ger-
many, some Japanese aided
Jews in escaping from Europe.
There also have been disclo-
sures of a prewar Japanese
project, known as the "Fugu
Plan," to invite German Jews to
settle in Manchuria.
Many books about Jews
circulate old legends, including
a recurring theory that the
Japanese people — or at least
the imperial family — descend
from the ten lost tribes of Israel.
Some mention the historical
persecution of Jews and discern
parallels to Japan that buttress
a widely held notion here that
the country stands alone in a
hostile world. Other works re-
cycle bromides that Jews are
good at making money. Often,
that is said admiringly.
An example is a money-
strategy guide by Den Fuijita,
who heads the McDonald's
hamburger chain in Japan. His
book, which has sold 80,000
copies since publication in No-
vember, carries the subtitle The
Jewish Way of -Business - Nobody

Who Knows This Principle Will
Lose Money.

Let it be indicated to the credit of
Japanese officialdom that the new
greed, which is akin to and an echo of
the nefarious and falsified Protocols, is
not responsible for the published
Japanese anti-Semitic works. In a let-
ter repudiating the possibility of such
charges being leveled at the Japanese
government, Itaru Urnezu, director of
the Japanese Information Center, Con-
sulate General of Japan, wrote as fol-
lows in the New York Times, March 19:
Your report on Japanese
writers who are critical of Jews
(news story, March 12) speaks
of authors whose views should
not be interpreted as being
representative of those of the
Japanese people, much less of
the Government of Japan, al-
though in Japan as in the
United States, - freedom of
thought and expression are
constitutionally guaranteed.
Anti-Semitism has no roots
in Japan's cultural history. The
Japanese government and
people are firmly opposed to
any form of discrimination,
whether on ethnic, religious or
other grounds, and we are firm
in our determination to uphold
that position
Our democracies are prem-
ised on the trust that in a free
market of ideas, truth, justice
and decency will ultimately
prevail.

All who reject the canards and re-
fuse to fear dire results must be heard.
Even the overconfident should have
their views respected. Yet, blindness to
reality cannot be permitted dominance.
That is why the concluding line to the
summation of the development of in-
tolerant bias is so vital when the
Newsweek article concluded: "If the
Japanese could fall for one of the oldest
canards in Western culture, perhaps
they are not as shrewd as the rest of
the world thinks."
During World War II, there was
curiosity whether there were Jews in
Japan and if there was anti-Semitism
there. The information was provided
that there were some 2,000 Jews in
Japan and that there was no anti-
Semitism. Then came the observation:
"Should Japan need a scapegoat and
reason for it, it will find it convenient
to import even one Jew if necessary.
Where Jews are involved, the scapegoat
is always at hand."
An important addendum to the
consideration of the position of Jews in
Japan and the treatment of anti-
Semitism there appeared in a letter
published in the. New York Times on
March 25. In his letter, David G.
Goodman, associate professor of
Japanese and comparative literature at
the University of Illinois, author of two
books in Japanese on "The Jews and
Israel," presented the following facts:
I write to commend and
comment on your Marth 12
news article on recent Japanese
anti-Semitism.
First,
Japanese
anti-
Semitism has a long history. It
stretches back to the 1870s,
when Christian missionaries in-
, troduced the 'Japanese to an
image of the Jews as a venal

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