Japan Times 1971: Five men storm the state parliament and hurl fire bombs

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100 YEARS AGO

Saturday, October 15, 1921

Business mission has last meeting

Japan’s largest business trip ever overseas will leave Tokyo Central Station for Yokohama this morning at 10:51 a.m. to sail for the United States at 3 a.m. this afternoon. The Business Men’s Mission, as it is officially called, consists of representatives from the major industries of Japan, many of whom are leading members in the industrial development of the Japanese empire, and will have a meaning for the businessmen in America and Great Britain that they will later become to visit.

Final preparations for the party members’ departure were finalized yesterday afternoon, a business meeting at which certain divisions of the party were hit, followed by a tiffin at the industry club this was the last formal gathering of party members until they meet at Tokyo train station this morning.

At yesterday’s business meeting there was a brief discussion of the divisions in the general group that will occur after the party reaches New York City. It was announced that Dr. Takuma Dan, the leader of the party, due to his recent illness, would be forced to postpone his departure to the departure of the Empress of Russia on Saturday October 22, days after the Kashima, which carries the main mission, is believed to be the slight delay at Dr. Dan’s arrival will not seriously affect the work of the Mission in America. While Mr. T. Sakai, who directed the preparations and general plans for the trip, went up to Dr. Since arrival will make all necessary arrangements, there will be no official head of the mission at that time.

1921 | THE JAPAN TIMES

75 YEARS AGO

Thursday October 17, 1946

The renunciation of warfare influenced the Crown Prince tutor

Japan’s waiver of the war clause in the new constitution was the “determining factor” influencing Ms. Elizabeth Gray Vining’s decision to take the job of Crown Prince Akihito’s English teacher, she told the United Press upon her arrival in Yokohama on Tuesday.

The attractive teacher at the Quaker School said she thought her job was “interesting” and added that she had heard that the Crown Prince was intellectually mature.

Upon the arrival of the Marine Falcon abroad, which also brought 51 missionaries, 22 nuns and 145 dependent families and 523 Japanese emigrants, Mrs. Vining will be the first American tutor to teach a member of the Imperial House.

“Japan renounced war in its new constitution,” she said, “and that was the decisive factor in my appointment. I think my position can do a lot for peace between nations. “

Mrs. Vining said she understood that she would be working with Crown Prince Akihito’s current British tutor.

1946 |  THE JAPAN TIMES
1946 | THE JAPAN TIMES

50 YEARS AGO

Friday October 22nd 1971

5 men storm Diet Bldg., Throw incendiary bombs

Five young men stormed into the parliament building and tossed two Motolov cocktails, but were quickly overwhelmed by riot police on Thursday afternoon, known as International Anti-War Day.

The young men in business suits or jackets broke through the guards who challenged them and stormed into the outbuilding of the House of Representatives administration at around 12:25 p.m.

Five guards were posted around the entrance to the corridor of the outbuilding that leads to the main parliament building.

Two of the five teenagers tossed Motolov cocktails into the hallway after hurrying past the guards.

One of the bombs exploded, but no one was injured.

The five youths were arrested for trespassing and taken to Kojimachi Police Station for questioning.

One of them carried the red flag of the Kakumaruha (revolutionary Marxists). Two unused gasoline bombs and leaflets were also found in her possession.

One of them also had two smoking sticks attached to his legs.

The police assumed that the youths were members of the Kakumaruha guerrilla group.

The riot police were caught rather unsuspecting because the robbers entered the outbuilding, which was only guarded by civilians at the entrance.

The riot police guarded the nearby main parliament building.

The post office where the gasoline bomb exploded filled with smoke and became a scene of great confusion.

The five robbers carried badges that entitle the wearer to enter the parliament building without any formalities, but it turned out to be forgeries.

The badge that is issued to every diet man is in the shape of a cherry blossom and bears a Chinese character that denotes the House of Representatives on a green field.

Police said the fakes looked real to avoid the eyes of a casual observer, but the badges have now been invalid due to the stricter security measures imposed after three radicals fired fireworks in the Chamber of Parliament earlier this week.

When two guards challenged the men and reminded them that the badges were now invalid, the five pushed them away and ran down the hall before being suppressed.

1971 |  THE JAPAN TIMES
1971 | THE JAPAN TIMES

25 YEARS AGO

Wednesday October 2, 1996

Wireless electronic messaging debuts in Tokyo

A “paperless electronic newspaper service”, touted as the first of its kind in the world, was launched Tuesday for consumers in Tokyo and six surrounding prefectures.

The “newspaper” is a 180 gram display terminal that is as small as an electronic personal organizer that it looks like. The terminal only displays text.

The operator of the e-news service, Electronic News Service Inc., has placed ads on trains in which commuters read the news at the machine during rush hour instead of looking at a traditional newspaper.

The company said the terminal’s small size allows readers to enjoy the news on a crowded train without worrying about pestering others by opening pages.

Messages are automatically sent to the subscriber every morning until 6 a.m.

News from the Sankei Shimbun newspaper and information from the Pia magazine are fed into the terminal daily from a receiving unit in the user’s home, which decodes the signals sent by Fuji Television. The terminal must be plugged into the device to load the text.

As for Sankei, all Japanese-language information in the newspaper except for photos, advertisements and graphics is fed into the terminal.

About half a million characters of information per day, according to the electronic news service.

1996 |  THE JAPAN TIMES
1996 | THE JAPAN TIMES

Compiled by Tadasu Takahashi. In this feature, we dive into the 125-year-old archive of the Japan Times to present a selection of stories from the past. The Japan Times archive is now available in digital form. Further details can be found at jtimes.jp/en.

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