Monday, September 21, 2015

“Think and act as individuals” – Student activist demands Japan’s Diet members

I was encouraged by the refreshing speech by OKUDA Aki (photo), a member of SEALDs (Students’ Emergency Action for Liberal Democracy), at a public hearing on the Security Bill (actually the “War Bill”) at a Diet session in Japan on September 15, 2015. Before starting his speech, he sharpened up many sleeping Diet members who are supposed to represent the Japanese people. I was very happy with his action as I was frustrated whenever I saw the lawmakers sleep during the session. Many others who were watching the hearing were tweeting the same feelings. There, Okuda thoroughly explained why the younger generation had been criticized as being apathetic about politics and who was responsible for the political apathy. (MATSUMOTO Chie)



People’s anger broke police blockade – Chanting “Down with Abe”

On September 14, 2015, great many people came to the National Diet one after another from around 5pm to protest against the unconstitutional “War Bill”, finally filling the pedestrian areas. The police tried to keep the people from coming into the roads, and this police action made them packed in the narrow areas and caused many of them to be sick. The demonstrators strongly demanded the police to open the roads for them for fear of an accident, and the roads were finally opened for them after 7pm. A huge number of people filled the front gate of the parliament building, demanding Prime Minister Abe to step down. Their never-ending chants “Down with Abe” reflected strong anger against a possible forcible passage of the “War Bill” by the major party coalition of the Liberal Democrats and Komeito that was founded by the lay Buddhist organization Soka Gakkai. Some Diet members and OE Kenzaburo, a Nobel Literature Prize laureate, delivered speeches in front of the protesters. The organizer of the action announced the number of the participants to be 45,000, but the number continued to increase. (M)

<> Video(Five and a half minutes)

9.14  人々の怒りでふたたび車道決壊!~「安倍やめろ」のコール止まず


Ready-mixed Concrete workers wage strikes against the War Bill

Zennikken Solidarity Union, a construction industry union led by KIKUCHI Susumu with a membership of 3,000, carried through strikes all around Japan to demand the withdrawal of the cabinet of the Prime Minister ABE Shinzo as well as the scrapping of the “War Bill” on September 11, 2015. The strikes were waged in approximately 30 ready-mixed concrete facilites, such as the Kanto region in which Tokyo, Japan’s capital is located, Shizuoka, and the Kansai region. In addition, working people in nine prefectures joined the action by demonstrating and collecting signatures at major railway stations. FUKUSHIMA Mizuho, the deputy head of the opposition Social Democratic Party, came to the Hommoku Pier in Yokohama City to support the striking workers. At a concrete works in Fuji City, Shizuoka Prefecture, delegations of the South Korean Construction Workers Union also joined the strike. In the Kansai area, six concrete workers unions – the JFT (Japan Federation of Transport Workers Unions), the UA Zensen (Japanese Federation of Textile, Chemical, Food, Commercial, Service and General Workers' Unions), the Osaka Local of Zenkowan (All Japan Dockworkers Union), the Kansai Local of Kenkoro (All Japan Construction, Transport and General Workers' Union), the Kinki Asso (pumping) Union, and the Kansai Concrete Local of Zennikken Solidarity Union, jointly carried out a street action in front of Osaka Railway Station beyond the framework of trade union national centers. (KOYANO Takeshi, Secretary General of Zennikken)


全日建(全日本建設運輸連帯労働組合・菊池進委員長 3千人)は911日、戦争法案の廃案、安倍内閣の退陣を求める全国統一ストライキ行動を実施しました。関東、静岡(写真)、関西のセメント出荷基地や生コン工場など30カ所ほどの拠点職場が始業時から2時間の時限スト。ほかにも一斉休暇や残業拒否などでターミナル駅での街宣・署名活動をおこなうなど、合計9都府県の職場が統一行動に参加しました。横浜の本牧埠頭にあるセメント出荷基地のスト現場には、社民党副党首の福島みずほ議員が激励にかけつけ、静岡県富士市の生コン工場にはおりから来日中の韓国建設労組の代表団もストに参加。関西では生コン関連6労組交通労連生コン産労、UA、全港湾大阪支部、建交労関西支部、近畿圧送労組、全日建関生支部)が、ナショナルセンターの枠をこえて大阪駅頭で共同の街頭宣伝をおこないました。(全日建書記長・小谷野毅)