Kyuichi Tokuda

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Kyuichi Tokuda
TOKUDA Kyuichi.jpg
Portrait of Kyuichi Tokuda (ca. 1952)
Chair of the Japanese Communist Party
In office
Preceded by Toshihiko Sakai
Succeeded by Sanzo Nosaka
Personal details
Born (1894-09-12)September 12, 1894
Died October 14, 1953(1953-10-14) (aged 59)
Political party Japanese Communist Party

Kyuichi Tokuda (徳田 球一 Tokuda Kyūichi?, September 12, 1894 - October 14, 1953) was a Japanese politician and first chairman of the Japanese Communist Party from 1945 until his death in 1953.


Kyuichi Tokuda was born in 1894 to a poor family in Okinawa. He worked as a substitute teacher before studying law in 1918 at Nihon University. He graduated in 1920, and became a lawyer. Tokuda went to Moscow and Petrograd to take part in the Congress of Revolutionary Organizations and Peoples of the Far East. He joined the Japanese Communist Party following his return to Japan. He was elected a member of its central committee. In 1925, he traveled to Moscow, where he took part in the ECCI. In February 1928, he was the candidate of the Workers' and Farmers' Party in the parliamentary elections. In March 1928, he was arrested and was sentenced to ten years at hard labor but was not released until on October 1945, a month after the end of World War II. While in prison, it was reported that Tokuda was branded. He was quoted as saying "I, myself was branded at Abashiri prison, and lost the use of my right arm as a result."[1] [2] [3]

He was held in Fuchu prison when he was released. It was reported that when he walked out of Fuchu prison, he was immediately hoisted to the shoulders of a cheering crowd of Communists and Koreans shouting "Banzai for the release of the fighters of the people's front." Tokuda was quoted as saying "The imperial system is the root of all evils", and that "The emperor must go before Japan can even begin to fulfill the terms of the Potsdam declaration." and that "Militarism, bureaucracy and the rulership of our moneyd interests rests solely on the antiquoted monarchy." In Oct 1945, Kyuichi Tokuda extended thanks for the release of political prisoners to an officer representing Gen. MacArthur's chief of staff, Lt. Gen. Richard K. Sutherland.[4] [5] [6] [7] [8] Kyuichi Tokuda declared his intention to lead a movement to overthrow the emperor and the powerful ruling families of Japan, and asserted that he would lead a campaign for a republic and redistribution of the land.[9]

In July 1948, Tokuda survived an assassination attempt while giving a speech in Saga, Kyushu. The assassin was Ichiro Koga, a 27-year-old coal miner, who used a homemade grenade. Tokuda was wounded, but survived.[10] [11] [12] [13]

He became the secretary-general of JCP. He was elected to the House of representatives three times in a row. In 1950, he was purged by the Occupation authorities. He fled to Beijing. He died in Communist China in October 1953.[14][15]

Tokuda was noted for his fierce oratory, and for being "a tough, uncompromising fighter, popular with the workers.[16]


  • Eighteen Years in Prison (Gokuchu juhachi-nen) by Kyuichi Tokuda and Yoshio Shiga. Published by the Japanese Communist Party Party in 1948.
  • Appeal to the People

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Frédéric, Louis (2002). Japan Encyclopedia. Harvard University Press. p. 975. 
  2. ^ Milorad M. Drachkovitch (December 1, 1986). Biographical Dictionary of the Comintern. Hoover Institution Press. pp. 472–473. 
  4. ^ "Japanese Diet Called Farce". The Tuscaloosa News. Oct 5, 1945. 
  5. ^ "CAN"T HAVE DEMOCRACY AND HIROHITO, JAPS SAY". Toronto Daily Star. Oct 4, 1945. 
  6. ^ "REMOVE HIROHITO IS CRY OF FREED JAP COMMUNISTS". Toronto Daily Star. Oct 10, 1945. 
  7. ^ "Remove Hirohito, Tokyo Reds Ask". The Pittsburgh Press. Oct 10, 1945. 
  8. ^ "Nippon Communists March Through Allied-Ruled Tokyo, Ask Removal of Jap Emperor". The Bulletin. Oct 10, 1945. 
  9. ^ "BAN FREEDOM FOR JAP REDS". The Milwaukee Sentinel. Oct 3, 1945. 
  10. ^ "PRESSURE FROM LEFT INCREASES IN JAPAN". The Lewiston Daily Sun. Jul 21, 1948. 
  11. ^ "THE WORLD TODAY By James D. White AP Foreign Affairs Analyst". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Aug 2, 1948. 
  12. ^ "JAP NO. 1 RED HURT". Sarasota Herald-Tribune. Jul 28, 1948. 
  13. ^ "Assassin Hits Japanese Red". Eugene Register-Guard. Jul 20, 1948. 
  14. ^ Frédéric, Louis (2002). Japan Encyclopedia. Harvard University Press. p. 975. 
  15. ^ Milorad M. Drachkovitch (December 1, 1986). Biographical Dictionary of the Comintern. Hoover Institution Press. pp. 472–473. 
  16. ^ "Leaders of Japan Communist Party". The Age. Jun 6, 1950. 

External links[edit]