Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > Columns

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Comment
 
Column Tools
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 9a / 22a
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 9a / 22a
by Peter Goldsbury
12-31-2012
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 9a / 22a

NOTE
I: More on Thomas Nadolski, Morihei Ueshiba and the 1931 October Incident

Since Column 9 of this series was written, I have done further research on the meetings held at Morihei Ueshiba's Kobukan Dojo by extremist groups planning political assassinations in Japan during the 1930s. In this connection, I should state right away that there is no direct evidence that Morihei Ueshiba was directly involved in the planning of such assassinations. As I stated in the previous column, his involvement seems to have been more a matter of association with people who turned out to be the ‘wrong sort of people.' On the other hand, there is a need to look more closely at these groups and the factors that influenced them, and also why they came to be associated with Morihei Ueshiba. In Japan, a veil has largely been drawn over these years and there is a tendency to criticize those who pursue further research in this area as having a ‘masochistic' view of history, which emphasizes Japan's alleged wrongdoings, rather than praising her earnest commitment to world peace etc. This tendency can certainly be seen in the martial arts, especially in aikido, where spectacular postwar progress is highlighted in preference to the darker prewar period.

For Column 9, I used as the main text a doctoral thesis written by Thomas Nadolski and accepted by the University of Pennsylvania in 1975. For this supplementary column, I have taken one section of the text of Column 9, but have made some emendations and added more material, based on additional sources that have come to hand recently, since Column 22 was published. One of the issues here is the use of historical fiction as evidence of real happenings. This was discussed in some detail in Column 21, in connection with the historical novels of Shiba Ryotaro and Romulus Hillsborough. The use of historical fiction is also an issue with Nadolski, also, where he cites a fiction writer as evidence of something alleged to have really happened. After giving a brief chronology of the important events, I present an amended text of a small part of Column 9, together with new material relevant to Nadolski's discussion.

(NOTE. I apologize for the presence of so much Japanese in this column, but only half-heartedly. The new material is all in Japanese and has never been translated. As a historian, I believe that it is of vital importance to lay bare all the evidence, as far as possible as it is. However, time constraints have prevented the kind of care about translations that would be expended were this article to be part of a book. Apart from the utterances of the Deguchis [Onisaburo and Kyotaro], successive paragraphs of which have been translated, I have given enough explanatory notes and comments for the gist of the other Japanese texts to be understood.)

Preliminaries:
1. Iwata on the Meetings in the Kobukan Dojo
In the interviews recorded on Stanley Pranin's Aikido Journal (AJ)website, we find the following statements made by Ikkusai Iwata, one of Morihei Ueshiba's early uchi-deshi. The interview has been published several times in book form (in English and Japanese) and also on the English-language AJ website. (For one thing, Mr Iwata followed the Japanese practice of using other names and he is Hajime in one version of the interview. There have also been changes in the order of the questions and in the content of the responses. The extract below is from an older version of the AJ website that was immediately accessible. The contributions of Mr Pranin are in bold type.)
"I understand that you were in Shanghai when World War II ended. How did you respond?

On August 15, 1945, we were told to listen to the radio because some important news was going to be broadcast. We discovered that it was the Emperor's speech announcing the end of the war. I was disappointed, because we had been fighting for the liberty of the Asian peoples, although we were not wise in our way of fighting. We thought that we could never be defeated as long as we believed strongly in victory. But we had to face the reality of defeat. I thought at that time that it was a defeat of the East by the West. I also felt that the kami were being unfair. But soon I began to realize that blaming them was meaningless, and that it was necessary to analyze the reason for our defeat. We Japanese have our strong points, and foreigners have their own strong points as well. So I thought that we should reflect on the cause of our defeat objectively and from a broader point of view.

I think that East and West are different from each other both historically and ethnologically.

Yes, we can say that Eastern peoples are agricultural races, while Westerners are hunting races. Westerners had to survive by hunting because of the natural environment. Since Easterners have always lived in areas belonging to temperate, subtropical, and tropical zones, they have been able to eat vegetarian diets, grow agricultural products, and thus are agricultural races, dependent on the weather for good crops. Their livelihood is dependent on the weather. As a result, their ideas about happiness differ from those of Westerners.

What is happiness then? I wonder what happiness is? I think happiness is something that is felt in our hearts. To say this more concretely, happiness can be expressed by division; the numerator is the object of human desire, and the denominator is human desire. If the result of the division is positive, then we are happy. On the contrary, if we get a negative result, and we are only 80% happy, I doubt that we will feel happy.

The larger the result of this division, the happier we feel. Thus, I conclude that if one wishes to be happy, one must increase the numbers of the object of desire. In the East, both Buddhism and Confucianism have taught people to reduce the denominator [desire].

In the West, people try to increase the numerator, if their desire [the number of the denominator] increases. This is a fundamentally different approach to the pursuit of happiness. Am I wrong? Eastern teachings tell us to reduce our desires, that means to be patient. Lao-tzu and Confucius also taught the same thing. They teach us to learn to be content, that is, to be patient. For a long period of time, Easterners have been brought up with the ideas of Buddhism and Confucianism to suppress their desires.

Westerners, on the other hand, do not easily suppress their desires. In this point, we can see the difference between Eastern and Western civilizations. I think this is the cause of the differences. Desire grows infinitely. There is a saying from a Chinese book called Gokansho. In Japanese it is Ro o ete shoku o nozomu(Avarice knows no bounds).In 3rd-century China there was a country called Ro, which was blessed with an abundance of goods, and excellent people. Because of this wealth, a general named Soso wanted to conquer it, but as soon as he had done so, he began to lust after the neighboring country of Shoku, because it seemed even richer to him. Our wants increase infinitely in this way. [Though not cited in the English translation, the Japanese text of this proverb is隴を得て蜀を望む and the explanation can be found in Japanese dictionaries of proverbs. See, for example, Shogakukan's Kotowaza Daijiten, 1982, p. 1234.]

Because of this, wars occur. Many lives have been sacrificed to attain the desires of conquerors. Many people have been victimized, and have lost their lives. This is a common event in human history. I believe that we must stop sacrificing people; if we drop atomic and hydrogen bombs it will be the end of the world. This is why Ueshiba Sensei insisted on a goal of world peace. We must negotiate with one another to achieve understanding. We must create world peace by depending not on power, but on reason.

When you first became O-Sensei's student, was he already teaching such ideas?

Before I answer your question, I would like to mention the Japanese situation during World War II. At that time Japan had little land and poor resources, while the population was continuing to increase. There were less than one hundred million people then. Assuming that the population would increase in the next ten years at the same pace, it would become impossible for us to survive. One koku and one to (old Japanese measurements; one koku is 180 liters, one to is 1800 liters) of rice was needed each year per person to live on. However, the amount of arable land was not increasing. As the Japanese population increased, the farm lands were not sufficient to support all the people. To solve this problem, the Japanese were forced to look abroad. They began to immigrate to foreign countries. Or, as another option, they considered trade with other countries. But at that time, Japan rejected this notion. Even now, we can see the trade friction between Japan and America, and some people are saying that the situation is similar to that of pre-war days.

In about 1931, Japan inclined toward the policy of obtaining land in foreign countries. Japanese politicians exercised their power only for themselves. I think we can still see this tendency today. But there was a movement to reform Japanese policy at that time. The group called "Sakurakai," which consisted of young military officers, gathered to discuss the reform of Japan. Among the members were Shumei Okawa, Nissho Inoue, and Kozaburo Tachibana.They said that they needed to reform Japan. I don't mean [they were planning] a revolution. Their meeting place was the Ueshiba Dojo. Few people know this. Ueshiba Sensei had the enthusiasm to create sincere techniques and to use them for Japan's sake. So it was a time when people who wanted to do good for Japan came to his dojo. (Interview with Ikkusai Iwata, Aikido Journal, http://members.aikidojournal.com/pri...kusai-iwata-2/accessed Sept 6, 2012.)
Other versions of the interview have slightly different phrasing for the two statements in the final paragraph printed in non-italicized bold type. In the two books published by Mr Pranin (Aikido Masters and Aikido Pioneers: Prewar Era), the statement in bold type reads, They said they needed to reform, rather than revolutionize, Japan. The book version shifts the emphasis on reform, rather than revolution, from Iwata himself to the persons mentioned, whereas in fact, according to all the other evidence available, those mentioned by name were pretty accurately called revolutionaries. Since the Japanese editions of the interviews that I possess do not contain this particular part of the Iwata interview, I cannot check the accuracy of the translation or any nuances of the Japanese. The AJ translations are usually very reliable, but there is a sharp shift of emphasis in the two versions given above and, given all the other evidence, the Internet version seems closer than the book versions to what Messrs. Okawa, Inoue and Tachibana actually had in mind. I think this will become clearer from the next section (and also from Column 24, which deals with aikido and agrarianism or agrarian nationalism). There are also some other translation issues in the last paragraph quoted that I will highlight in the final section of this column.

Preliminaries:
2. The ‘Incidents' of the 1930s
The Kobukan Dojo was inaugurated in April, 1930, and the Sakura-kai [桜会: generally known in English as the Cherry Blossom Society, mainly because 桜 in Japanese tends to refer to the blossoms rather than the trees themselves] was formed in July of the same year. The Second Suppression of the Omoto religion occurred in 1935. During the years in between, there was a succession of ‘incidents' [事件: jiken, here used as a euphemism for attempted or successful assassinations or attempted coups d'état] involving members of the Sakurakai and the persons mentioned in the Iwata interview. The political, social, military, and martial history of these years is very complex, but the bare bones of the Iwata interview can be fleshed out somewhat by an account of the ‘incidents'. In this instance, the Wikipedia accounts are quite reliable, based as they are on acceptable sources, so they will be used here. The English versions are accessible at: (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of...tary_incidents).

The March Incident [三月事件Sangatsu Jiken], 1931
This ‘incident' was an indirect result of the formation of the Sakurakai in the autumn of 1930. The military sought a military prime minister, but after a civilian prime minister was suggested, some enraged military generals urged Lt. Col. Kingoro Hashimoto, one of the founders of the organization, to stage a coup d'état. Hashimoto's plan involved three phases:
  1. Riots would be instigated in Tokyo, which would force the government to call out troops and proclaim martial law.
  2. The Imperial Japanese Army would stage a coup d'état and seize power.
  3. A new cabinet would be formed under the premiership of General Kazushige Ugaki.
In February, organizations led by Okawa Shumei and others started a commotion outside the Diet Building. However, the intended riot failed to occur and so Hashimoto consulted Okawa, who wrote to Ugaki explaining the plot and demanding that he call out troops and take action. Ugaki was either lukewarm from the beginning or noticed the failure of the projected riot. He also hoped to become prime minister by legitimate methods and possibly foresaw that a military dictatorship would alienate sections of the Japanese elite, whose support would be needed in the event of total war. The plotters attempted to start another riot on 17 March 1931, two days before the planned coup d'état was planned to take place. Again the projected 10,000 rioters failed to appear and this time the leaders were arrested.

The Wikipedia article ends by suggesting that the veil of silence and the lenient sentences imposed had the result of encouraging more attempts by the military to intervene in politics. The causes of this phenomenon are rather more complex than the circumstances surrounding the failure of one attempt at a coup d'état, but Hashimoto was certainly undeterred by his failure and attempted to overthrow the government again a few months later.

The October Incident [十月事件: Jūgatsu Jiken], also known as
The Imperial Colors Incident [錦旗革命事件: Kinki Kakumei Jiken],1931
This ‘incident' was also organized by Hashimoto Kingoro and was planned directly after the failed March Incident. According to Wikipedia, soon after the Manchurian ‘Incident' / Mukden ‘Incident' (the invasion of Manchuria by the Kwantung Army), Captain Cho Isamu, who was one of the founders of the Sakurakai, returned to Japan secretly to direct this second attempt, in order to "prevent the government from squandering the fruits of our victory in Manchuria." Cho was able to enlist the support of 120 members of the Sakurakai, ten companies of troops from the Imperial Guards, and ten bomber aircraft from the imperial Japanese Navy.

The plot envisaged the assassination of key government figures: Prime Minister Wakatsuki Reijiro, Grand Chamberlain Saito Makoto, Prince Saionji Kinmochi, Lord Keeper of the Privy Seal Makino Nobuaki, and Foreign Minister Shidehara Kijuro. In addition, troops loyal to the Sakurakai were to seize the Imperial Palace, Tokyo Metropolitan Police Headquarters and other buildings in central Tokyo. A new cabinet would be formed led by General Araki Sadao, who was the leader of the radical Imperial Way Faction [皇道派: Kodoha] and a new government would ban all political parties and institute direct rule under the Emperor. The new government would consolidate the recent territorial gains of Japan in Manchuria. This was the essence of the so-called Showa Restoration and the Emperor would be pressured to accept it under threat of violence.

The plot failed because the younger members of the groups began to doubt the leaders and withdrew from the plot. In addition, leaks reached the War Minister Minami Jiro, who requested Araki to deal with the conspirators. Araki attempted to reason with Hashimoto and Cho, but failed. Accordingly he had them arrested by the Kempeitai on 17 October 1931.

The punishments were actually very mild. Hashimoto was sentenced to twenty days house arrest and Cho to ten days. Other leaders were transferred to different posts / locations. The failed plot was the direct cause of the break-up of the Sakurakai in 1931, but Hashimoto remained active after his release and he was also thought to be behind the February 26 Incident in 1936.

The above paragraphs contain the substance of the Wikipedia article on the conspiracy, which draws on the research of Ben Kiernan in his Blood and Soil: A World History of Genocide and Extermination from Sparta to Darfur. The relevant chapter is Chapter 12, entitled "Race, Rice and Empire" and the quotation above, about ‘squandering' the ‘fruits of victory in Manchuria', appears on p. 468. The chapter discusses at great length the way in which both the territorial expansion in Manchuria and the attempted coups d'état were connected by the conspirators like Hashimoto and Cho with a theory of agrarian nationalism that was espoused by people like Tachibana Kozaburo, who also attended the meetings in the Kobukan Dojo. (These theories of agrarian nationalism, too complex to discuss here, will be examined in a later column.)

The League of Blood Incident [血盟団事件: Ketsumeidan Jiken], also known as
The Blood-Pledge Corps Incident, 1932
This was not an attempted coup d'état, designed to effect a change of government, so much as a plot in which the assassins targeted wealthy businessmen and liberal politicians. Twenty victims were chosen, but only two were actually assassinated: Inoue Junnosuke, former Finance Minister and head of the Rikken Minseito [立憲民政党: Constitutional Democratic Party, one of the main liberal political parties in Imperial Japan], and Dan Takuma, Chairman of Mitsui Holdings. The assassins were quickly arrested and were identified as members of a group run by Inoue Nissho, who, like Tachibana Kozaburo, mentioned above, was another agrarian nationalist mentioned in the AJ interview with Ikkusai Iwata as attending the Sakurakai meetings in Morihei Ueshiba's Kobukan Dojo. Inoue had established a school in Ibaraki Prefecture to promote agrarianism, but this gradually evolved into a training centre for ultra-rightist radicals.

The Wikipedia article slides over some controversial aspects of the affair. Inoue was opposed to the plans of Hashimoto, Okawa and the Sakurakai to install a military government run by the Army. On the other hand, after the failure of the October Incident he became convinced that violent confrontation was necessary for effective political reform. His group made contact with other groups in Tokyo, including young naval officers who objected to Japan's acceptance of the Washington Naval Treaty of 1922, and Inoue Nissho devised the list of twenty politicians and business leaders who would be assassinated. The first assassination took place on 9 February 1932, when Onuma Sho shot Inoue Junnosuke with a Browning automatic pistol. Dan's assassination followed on March 5, and was carried out by Hishinuma Goro, also with a similar Browning automatic, both of which had been obtained by Inoue. Inoue himself surrendered to the police on 11 March 1932 and was, apparently, treated with a measure of respect.

The May 15 Incident [五・一五事件: Goichigo Jiken], 1932
This has been termed a real coup d'état, but did not achieve the results the instigators hoped for. The perpetrators were officers from the Japanese Imperial Navy and the Wikipedia article sees parallels with the Sakurakai, which was organized within the Japanese Imperial Army. As stated above, there was contact between these naval officers and Inoue Nissho and this led to general agreement on the necessity for assassinating leading political and business figures.

In the March ‘League of Blood' Incident, the assassins succeeded in killing only Inoue Junnosuke and Dan Takuma. On May 15, 1932, naval officers, assisted by Army cadets and civilians, including Okawa Shumei, Toyama Mitsuru and Tachibana Kozaburo, attempted to complete what the ‘League of Blood' Incident had begun. Eleven young officers shot Prime Minister Inukai Tsuyoshi in his official residence. Others attacked the residence of Lord Privy Seal Makino Nobuaki and Prince Saionji Kinmochi, the last surviving Genro and head of the Rikken Seiyukai [立憲政友会: Friends of Constitutional Government, a major rival of the Rikken Minseito and the other main liberal-conservative political party in Imperial Japan]. After the incidents, the assassins took taxis to the Metropolitan Police Headquarters and gave themselves up to the Kempeitai.

Consequences
The perpetrators of both the League of Blood Incident and the May 15 Incident were arrested and tried before the courts. What is especially noteworthy are the lenient punishments imposed. This was partly due to the way in which the trials were staged; the judges allowed the defendants to turn the trials into platforms from which they could expound their political beliefs. The trials were widely reported in the press and this led to widespread popular support.

Inoue Nissho was sentenced to life imprisonment in 1934, but was released under a general amnesty in 1940. He died in 1967. The Wikipedia article notes that, "many in the Japanese public came to sympathize with the aims of the conspirators, if not with their methods. Following the trials it became harder for courts to deal harshly with terrorists who claimed to be acting in the interests of the Emperor." The League of Blood Incident inspired the plot of the novel Runaway Horses, the second volume of Yukio Mishima's Sea of Fertility tetralogy.

The Wikipedia article on the May 15th Incident comes to a similar conclusion. The eleven murderers of Prime Minister Inukai were tried, but, according to the Wikipedia account, the court received a petition containing over 35,000 signatures in blood, which had been signed by sympathizers around the country to plead for a lenient sentence. This suggests that the misunderstanding of the term ‘ketsumeidan' [league of blood] as a group bound by oaths signed in blood, wrongly suggested by the prosecutor at the trial, was quite general. It also suggests that the trial had caught the popular imagination and was being widely followed in the press. Another indication of this is the curious report that the court also received a request from eleven youths in Niigata, asking that they may be executed in place of the naval officers and sending eleven severed fingers to the court as a measure of their sincerity. (This is cited in the Wikipedia article, but I have not been able to check the source.) The Wikipedia article ends with the judgment that, "there was little doubt in the Japanese press that the murderers of Prime Minister Inukai would be released in a couple of years, if not sooner. Failure to punish the plotters in the May 15 Incident further eroded the rule of law and the power of the democratic government in Japan to confront the military. Indirectly, it led to the February 26 Incident of 1936 and the increasing rise of Japanese militarism." This judgment is, of course, correct as far as it goes, but previous columns have suggested that both the incidents themselves and the light punishments the culprits received were as much a symptom as a cause.

The Military Academy Incident [士官学校事件: Shikan Gakko Jiken], also known as
The November Incident [十一月事件Juichigatsu Jiken], 1934
This was another attempted coup d'état, carried out by two young officers, respectively named Muranaka and Isobe, and five army cadets who were disgruntled at the dismissal in 1934 of General Araki Sadao, the de facto leader of the Imperial Way Faction in the Japanese military. The Wikipedia article correctly suggests that the officers involved were inspired by the failed attempts of the Sakurakai and especially by the vision that the Sakurakai promoted, which was a "militaristic, totalitarian, state socialist system as an alternative to the current corrupt party politics" that "dominated the democratic government."

The plot failed because one of the cadets, named Sato, informed the authorities. A company commander at the Army Academy, Captain Tsuji Masanobu, arranged for the arrest of the conspirators on 20 November 1932. The five cadets were not convicted, but were expelled from the Academy the following year. The two officers were suspended from duty for six months. However, the two officers published a pamphlet with the title of, "Views on the Housecleaning of the Army," and were dismissed outright in 1935.

The Imperial Way faction believed that Sato was a spy acting for Captain Tsuji and that the affair was actually a trap set by the rival Control Faction to discredit General Mazaki Jinzaburo, the Inspector General of Military Education, who had been compelled to resign as a result of the affair.

The Aizawa Incident, [相沢事件Aizawa jiken ], 1935
In retaliation for the failed Military Academy Incident, an officer of the Imperial Way Faction, named Aizawa Saburo, went to the office of Nagata Tetsuzan and cut him down with a sword. Major-General Nagata, an Imperial Way officer, was Mazaki Jinzaburo's replacement. After a court martial, Aizawa was shot by firing squad and the Army Minister was forced to resign.

The February 26 Incident, 1936
This was the last major attempt at a coup d'état and was put down by the military on the direct orders of Emperor Hirohito. It also led to the disappearance of the Imperial Way Faction of the Imperial Army, the members of which were absorbed into the opposing group, known as the Control Faction [Tosei-ha: 統制派], which took a much more active role in planning all-out war in Asia. A number of people were arrested in connection with this ‘incident' and some of these were quickly executed. This was by far the most serious ‘incident' to take place and Nadolski argues very strongly that there was also a connection with the earlier Second Suppression of the Omoto religion and the arrest of Onisaburo Deguchi and his colleagues. This suppression occurred the year before, in 1935. All the previous ‘incidents' can be seen as leading to this major conflict in 1936 and this is the indirect relevance of the meetings that took place in the Kobukan Dojo several years earlier. Hashimoto Kingoro was thought to be involved in this attempted coup d'état, as were other friends of Morihei Ueshiba, such as Okawa Shumei. It is therefore of some importance to consider the general significance of these assassinations attempts at coups d'état for ordinary Japanese, and for those like Morihei Ueshiba, who were members of the political and military networks, but were not directly involved.

The Importance of the ‘Incidents'
It would be easy to write off all these ‘incidents' as simple and spontaneous outbreaks of ‘terrorism' and place them in a predetermined context that includes all the other outbreaks. On this account, ‘terrorism' is a kind of constant, which always finds an outlet somewhere. At the time, high-ranking military officers attributed the incidents to an excess of zeal on the part of the ‘young' officers, who acted for the purest of motives and the very best of intentions. However, the context needs to be more carefully delineated and two series of quotations might help to achieve this. They are both from the same source:
"By the 1920s the social harmony of Meiji had obviously vanished. Pluralism and diversity, products of the modernizing process, now gave Japan a much wider range of ideological choices. Both labor and capital, tenant and landlord clashed openly while various partisans trumpeted class, occupational, regional, and other subnational loyalties. Under such circumstances, it is understandable that social theorists, both in government and outside it, began to question previous assumptions about Japanese nationalism. New formulations, stressing myths of social harmony and Japanese uniqueness, appeared precisely when the old Meiji consensus on what it meant to be a Japanese had broken down and the country was growing more like other nations. All governments routinely spin out myths of national separateness to built more unity where little exists and the Japanese state was no exception, especially in the 1930s. Hence politicians and generals joined the statist clamor. Vigorous leaders such as Tanaka Giichi (1863 -- 1929) and patriot-scholars such as Okawa Shumei (1886 -- 1957) broadcast doctrines of state loyalty that appealed strongly to the armed forces.
Previous columns have pointed to the failures in the Meiji Constitution of 1899 to achieve a harmonious working structure of the various organs of government. The breakdown, and the recriminations that resulted, allowed various interests to propose their own preferred solutions, but, because of the limitations of the Meiji Constitution, there was no forum in which the solutions could be debated and decided in an orderly manner.
Kokumin nationalism, now expressed by such liberal activists as Yoshino Sakuzo (1878 -- 1933) and Saionji Kinmochi (1849 -- 1940), resisted absolute allegiance to the state but usually accepted the institutions of government (if not the men and policies guiding them). Such acquiescence was not the case, however, for the national reconstructionists of the day." (Thomas R H Havens, Farm and Nation in Modern Japan, pp. 185 -- 186.)
Havens goes on to mention one eminent reconstructionist, named Kita Ikki (1883 -- 1937), whose ideas, like those of Okawa Shumei, strongly appealed to the armed forces. Havens then raises a related issue of great importance, first as a generalization and then specifically applied to Japan.
"Perhaps the most vexing dilemma facing the politically knowledgeable citizen of a modern country is how to oppose the programs of his government without seeming unpatriotic. Even in societies with institutionalized channels for expressing nonviolent dissent, it is hard to appear loyal to either state or nation where nationalism is virtually monopolized by the state.
The political culture of modern Japan has been slow to nurture the idea of loyal opposition, and before 1945 few means existed to protest government decisions that were ultimately sanctioned as the imperial will under the 1889 constitution. It is of course true that between World War I and World War II the Japanese state neither retained the tacit public consensus of the Meiji period on national goals nor imperiously gathered all lesser popular loyalties into monolithic allegiance to its policies of expansion in Asia. Nevertheless, the government's legal, institutional, and ceremonial advantages in utilizing nationalism made it extremely difficult to oppose the state and still appear to be a patriot." (Havens, op.cit., p. 190.)
Put in very general terms, the issue was whether the nationalism had to be ‘statist', but centered on the emperor as the personification of the state, or ‘statist', but centered on the other organs of the state, all acting in supposed harmony around the emperor, or ‘anti-statist', centered on no particular organ of government. Havens notes that such difficulties were fatal to the Japan Communist Party in the 1920s and 1930s and very problematic for the non-communist Left. He does not mention Omoto, but this is highly relevant to the present issue, since the same difficulties also brought about the arrest of Deguchi Onisaburo and would have affected Morihei Ueshiba, had the latter not been protected by some powerful supporters in the Osaka police department. Even the protestations of the reconstructionist Kita Ikki, that he was utterly devoted to the Japanese nation in the face of Western imperialism, did not prevent his books from being banned and himself from being executed as one of the ringleaders of the February 26 Incident of 1936. On the other hand, Havens also notes that Kita was not exactly circumspect in his approach. He was one of a group who
"flaunted their own anti-state brand of nationalism by denouncing the financial cliques (zaibatsu), bureaucracy, military services, and political parties—the establishment that had permitted the country to drift into crisis. It even became stylish, at least on the fringes of what the police called the radical right, to revive the spirit of the mid-nineteenth century shishi [志士] or "men of high purpose", who likewise had discarded their allegiances to a depraved state in favor of higher loyalties to the throne. In short, the ideological ferment of the interwar era yielded the clearest division of state and nation in Japanese political thought since the 1860s and forced most Japanese to rethink familiar assumptions about what constituted the basis of the Japanese polity and society." (Havens, op.cit., p. 191.)
Morihei Ueshiba does not appear to have flaunted his own brand of nationalism, but he was well enough known in martial arts and military circles to attract the attention of those who flaunted theirs. Ueshiba was more circumspect than Kita Ikki, but it is clear from the few articles that appeared in Omoto publications under Ueshiba's name that he echoed Deguchi's support of a ‘Showa Restoration', which was the same cause as that embraced by the assassins.

The interpretation suggested by the Wikipedia articles and the discussion of Thomas Havens suggest that both the young officers of the Imperial Way Faction, headed by people like Hashimoto Kingoro and supported by Okawa Shumei, and their opponents in the Control Faction had a large measure of initiative and largely acted on their own. The light punishments for the officers and also the execution of Kita Ikki for the Feb 26 Incident can be explained within the context of an extended conflict between these two factions. However, the light punishments are coincident with another view of the ‘incidents' and one for which David Bergamini argues quite strongly in his book Japan's Imperial Conspiracy. Bergamini argues that the ‘incidents' were actually stage-managed by several key people close to the imperial palace under Emperor Hirohito, in order to ensure that a ‘strike south' policy was followed by the Japanese army and navy—and leading, of course, to total war with the US and Great Britain. The unusually severe suppression of Omoto in 1935 could also be interpreted in the same way, but with the stage management being orchestrated by different people. According to this interpretation, Okawa was a cat's paw, but was not acting immediately on behalf of members of the two factions. He was acting more indirectly, on behalf of other, more shadowy, figures who formed an extensive spy network within the government and bureaucracy and especially the Imperial Household Ministry, which was established by the Constitution of 1889. Bergamini had the advantage of having himself been a diplomat, of having lived in Japan for a number of years, and of having talked to some of the main players—or close associates of the main players. Nevertheless, his interpretation still has to rest on evidence, which needs to be scrutinized carefully and checked for another type of evidence: that of bias or selectivity.

Assassination as a Means of Conflict Resolution
Assassinating someone who holds a public office is a very direct way of making one's political point and I can still remember exactly what I was doing in 1963, when the assassination of US President John F Kennedy was announced. The dust of controversy has not yet settled over the Kennedy assassination, but to an outsider like myself it certainly seemed a defining moment in US politics. The assassinations of the 1930s were also a defining moment in Japanese politics, but the political points being made in Japan were being made in a context of a long tradition of warrior culture, in which acts like seppuku or hara-kiri [切腹, 腹切り: causing one's own death by cutting open the stomach] were accepted as an essential part of this culture. Being requested to end one's life by ritual suicide in such a way assumes a familiarity with death that seems but a short step from being willing and able to end the life of another unrequested, and one student of Morihei Ueshiba has recalled Ueshiba's stories about attacking the enemy with a sword under cover of darkness during the Russo-Japanese War. (Of course, the Russo-Japanese War was a very ‘public' war, with on-the-spot coverage by war correspondents from Japan and from abroad. Thus it is highly likely that such nocturnal expeditions would have been documented, especially since platoon commanders were on the lookout for acts of valor and corroboration would be necessary if any military honors were to be awarded. The celebrated case of 軍神 [gun-shin: soldier deity] Commander Hirose, largely manufactured by the military authorities, is an illustration of this.)

In Brian Victoria's Zen War Stories, the famous Zen master Omori Sogen gives a clear statement of what might be called the ‘philosophy of assassination' in the 1930s in a forward to a work entitled A Major History of the Right Wing: A purge of the ‘black clouds' [military cliques, political cliques, zaibatsu business cliques] would enable the sun [the Japanese emperor, as the divine descendant of Amaterasu the Sun Goddess] to shine forth in all its righteous glory. (Brian Daizen Victoria, Zen War Stories, pp. 43-47.)

Morihei Ueshiba stated on occasion that he performed services for the emperor and he gave a memorial prewar aiki-budo demonstration in front of imperial family members. He sent his students to teach at Okawa Shumei's school [Daigaku-ryou: 大学寮], which was located in the imperial palace grounds. However, in the absence of any clear statements, it is very difficult to form any clear view about Morihei Ueshiba's attitude to organizations like the Sakurakai, Ketsumeidan and such groups and also his attitude concerning the assassinations and coups d'état that they attempted to carry out. He might well have thought that aikido was dedicated to love and peace, as his postwar biographers and postwar discourses suggest, but this is not really an indication of his opinions and political attitudes in 1931. It is therefore an anachronous misjudgment to censure Ueshiba for omitting to enquire too closely about what his students were up to in their meetings at the Kobukan Dojo, on the grounds that the aikido he created is an art dedicated to world peace and non-violence. In any case, Morihei Ueshiba's thinking at the time would bear comparison with that of his spiritual teacher, Onisaburo Deguchi, some of whose statements are quoted by Nakano Masao in his edition of Hashimoto Kingoro's notes (see below).

We are therefore left with Iwata Ikkusai's comments in the AJ interview, which can accommodate a wide range of interpretations.
"Ueshiba Sensei had the enthusiasm to create sincere techniques and to use them for Japan's sake. So it was a time when people who wanted to do good for Japan came to his dojo."
The "people who wanted to do good for Japan", who "came to his dojo", covers a wide range of people and surely included men like Hashimoto Kingoro, Fujita Isamu, Okawa Shumei, Tachibana Kozaburo, and Inoue Nissho, as well as the students who were uchi-deshi. Iwata is making this statement as an explanation of his previous statement, namely, that Ueshiba was enthusiastically creating "sincere techniques" and using them for the "sake" of Japan. Presumably, he did the same at the Nakano Spy School and at all the other military schools where he taught, in addition to his technical research at the Kobukan Dojo. The evidence of this technical research can be seen in the diaries of Takeshita Isamu and the two manuals produced in this period: Budo Renshu (1933) and Budo (1938). There is evidence, however, that what was taught at these military schools was somewhat rougher than the admittedly severe training of the Kobukan (given by Amdur in Dueling with O Sensei).

On the basis of Iwata's comments, one can form an image of the Kobukan ‘Hell' Dojo as a place of intense training, with great attention paid by Morihei Ueshiba to the social standing of those who trained there, but with rather less attention paid to their political views. In any case, the above discussion has suggested that the Kobukan was flourishing in a time of great intellectual and political ferment and that in spite of its very close links with the military and political establishment, it is unlikely that Ueshiba would have included stringently ‘correct' political views among members of the military establishment as one of the conditions he required for their entry to the dojo. For example, one of the members of the dojo was the very senior General Araki Sadao, who is mentioned in this column as leader of the radical Imperial Way Faction. Tojo Hideki, who headed the opposing Control Faction and who later became Prime Minister and led Japan into war with the US and Britain, also practiced Ueshiba's aiki-budo when he was stationed in Manchuria.

In Kisshomaru Ueshiba's biography, a section of which is quoted below, we have the following comment.
The dojo drew people from all walks of life.
The original Japanese is more precise.
従来からの門弟に加えて、新たに多士済々、異色の顏ぶれも混じって賑わいを呈した。
Jurai kara no montei ni kuwaete, aratani tashi seisei, ishoku no kaobure mo majitte nigiwai wo tei shita.
For AikiWeb readers who are studying Japanese, the grammatical parsing with English word order of subject, verb and object, and a rather more literal translation, might go something like the following.
[The dojo: grammatical subject understood] tei shita [main verb] wo [object particle introducing the grammatical object, which is a compound object clause: {Jurai kara no montei ni kuwaete, / aratani tashi seisei, / ishoku no kaobure mo majitte / nigiwai}]
The dojo presented a bustling spectacle: a unique blend of students from before with new and able people.
The translation in Kisshomaru Ueshiba's biography is not inaccurate, but is perhaps open to misinterpretation by those who are unacquainted with the special features of Japanese martial culture in the 1930s. Ueshiba aimed his art at an elite and one could not simply walk in from off the street. Iwata was severely chastised for beginning training without a proper introduction, but he eventually entered the dojo as a live-in uchideshi. The same cannot be said of the others mentioned by Kisshomaru, including Fujita Isamu and the celebrities he brought to the dojo.

Nadolski: ‘Domestic Disorders and Omoto Participation'
The above heading is Nadolski's own sub-heading for a section of the fifth chapter of his doctoral thesis. Nadolski begins this section with a summary of the slide from the politics of moderation to the politics of confrontation between 1931 and 1936 and especially the attempted coups d'état that have been described above. The treatment is quite fair and balanced and problems arise only when it is not always clear which ‘incident' he is referring to and when he gives erroneous references to his Japanese sources. The most important point that Nadolski is concerned to make is the extent of the direct involvement in the domestic disorders by Onisaburo Deguchi and Omoto and also Deguchi's commitment to the ultranationalist politics of the Imperial Way Faction of the military. Bergamini also relates the suppression of Omoto to its involvement in domestic politics, but especially to its connection with the right-wing Amur River / Black Dragon Society. This involvement of Deguchi in domestic politics is not so clearly seen in the biographies of Morihei Ueshiba that also deal with Deguchi. Sunadomari's biography is heavily biased in favor of Deguchi and Kisshomaru Ueshiba's life suggests that Deguchi has been misunderstood and maligned, so Kisshomaru attempts to restore the balance. Kisshomaru does indeed mention the involvement of Omoto with right-wing groups.

Nadolski states that the first serious coup d'état developed in October 1931, soon after the Manchurian Incident. (This coup d'état would be the Imperial Colors Incident.) Nadolski argues that Onisaburo Deguchi was involved in this attempt and so he gives a careful account of the plans and objectives (pp. 199-203). Lt. Gen. Tatekawa Yoshitsugu was sent to Manchuria, in order to stop the planned military incursion, but generously allowed himself to be waylaid in a geisha house. He and his friends Lt. Col. Kingoro Hashimoto and Hiroshi Nemoto were worried that the government would reach a negotiated settlement in Manchuria. To thwart this, after the military incident in Manchuria Hashimoto and Nemoto proposed to take control of the Japanese government and abolish the party Cabinet system. They planned to request the surviving genro, Prince Saionji, to nominate as Prime Minister General Sadao Araki, who was the head of the Imperial Way Faction and much admired by young army radicals, while Tatekawa would take the Foreign Ministry and Hashimoto himself the Home Ministry. They assumed that by putting control in the hands of ‘pure' warriors, the "Imperial Way" would be ‘clarified' as the foundation of national life. Eventually the plot was exposed and Hashimoto was placed in protective custody for twenty days. His superiors were anxious to deny that anything unusual had taken place.

According to Marius Jansen, the plot was even more bizarre than Nadolski states and was not the first coup attempt:
"A few weeks after violence had broken out (in Manchuria), Hashimoto Kingoro and stalwarts of the Cherry Blossom Society conceived a plan to wipe out the entire government by aerial bombardment of a cabinet meeting; a crowd of rightists would then surround the War Ministry and General Staff Headquarters and demand the creation of a military government." (Jansen, The Making of Modern Japan, p. 582.)
David Bergamini also has a detailed and colorful account of the incident and dwells on the double role played by Okawa Shumei: to encourage everybody else, but in the secure belief that the plot would fail—with severe consequences for Army Minister General Ugaki, while at the same time not sticking his own neck out too far. In his edition of Hashimoto's notes, Nakano Masao states that Hashimoto had even procured some poison gas. Officers in the Kwantung Army were rotated every two years, in April, and the earlier March 31 Incident, which Nadolski does not discuss, occurred because of this. Jansen gives a succinct account of this coup attempt. Prime Minister Hamaguchi had chosen General Ugaki as Army Minister and the latter had decided to strengthen control of the army by a series of personnel shifts.
"As the rotation date [April] approached, a group of field-grade officers (members of a ‘Cherry Blossom Society'), and General Staff figures (Koiso Kuniaki and Tatekawa Yoshitsugu), encouraged by civilian right-wing theorists (Okawa Shumei), hoped that by attacking the prime minister's office and headquarters of the political parties and organizing a crowd of thousands, they would be able to get the army to declare martial law. It was not to be. Ugaki held back, military leaders thought Manchuria more urgent, and the crowd did not materialize. The affair remained a secret; the planners were reassigned, and some to the Kwantung Army, whose turn came next." (Jansen, op.cit., pp. 580-81)
It is in relation to these failed coup attempts that Nadolski makes one sole reference to Morihei Ueshiba, which appears on p. 201. The context is an extract from the notes made by Lt. Col. Hashimoto. I noted in Column 9 that Nadolski makes some serious mistakes, which led me to question how seriously he studied his Japanese sources. After correctly giving Hashimoto's dates (1890 -- 1957), Nadolski also correctly states that Hashimoto was suspected to be one of the ringleaders of the coup attempt of February 26, 1936. Then he bizarrely states that Hashimoto was eventually executed for his part in this. In fact, Hashimoto was tried as a Class A war criminal and sentenced to life imprisonment. He was later released and had a reasonably illustrious postwar career. He died of lung cancer in 1957. Shortly before his death he dictated some reminiscences to a military colleague (to be considered below), which Nadolski had clearly not seen. It is curious that this mistake in Nadolski's thesis was not corrected during the oral defence or when the thesis was eventually accepted.

For Nadoslski, the important point about Hashimoto's notes is that Hashimoto refers to Onisaburo Deguchi. Hashimoto's notes were written in 1936 and first published in 1963 by Nakano Masao (中野雅夫,『橋本大佐の手記』, みすず書房). Hashimoto implicates Onisaburo Deguchi in the 1931 Imperial Colors Incident directly:
"Among the leading groups which indicated support for the action were Okawa Shumei's Koukisha and Iwata Ainosuke's Aikokusha [There is a short part missing here, which is given in Japanese below.] Among those behind the plot were these supporters: Matsuo Chujiro of Kobe, Mandawara Kizo and Fujita Isamu. Moreover Deguchi Onisaburo especially sought an interview with me. He said he would mobilize his followers in Tokyo and then throughout the country, should the need arise, and he would give me Ueshiba Kenshi as a bodyguard." (Nadolski, The Socio-Political Background of the 1921 and 1935 Omoto Suppressions in Japan, Chapter V, "Domestic Disorders and Omoto Participation," pp. 200 -- 201.)
This extract is an English translation of Hashimoto's statement and is given by Nadolski in the text of his thesis. He adds an endnote to the relevant chapter:

"Nakano used this information in his novel, Sannin no houka. He described the arrival of fanatic robot-like Omoto believers who put themselves at the disposal of the conspiracy. Nakano was soundly criticized for this portrayal, and in order to substantiate the veracity of the background material he used, he published the text of Hashimoto's memoirs with commentary. Nakano, Hashimoto Taisa no shuki, pp. 138 -- 138 [sic]." (Nadolski, op.cit., Note 79, p. 219.)

As can be seen, the reference is incorrect. In the Japanese original of Hashimoto's notes, 『橋本大佐の手記』, the quoted text appears on p. 146. Nakano published sections of Hashimoto's notes and added a detailed commentary. The section in which Morihei Ueshiba's name appears is entitled, 「在鄕軍人愛国団体の指導」[Zaikou-gunjin Aikoku-dantai no Shidou: Guidance given by Military Reservists to Nationalist Groups]. The full Japanese title of Nakano's novel, mentioned by Nadolski in the above quotation, is 『三人の放火者』 [Sannin no Houkasha: Three Fire-raisers. Opinions of my Japanese colleagues were evenly divided over the reading: Houkasha or Houkamono.]. The crucial chapter is Chapter 16 (pp. 129-135). Clearly, the errors in Nadolski's thesis can be corrected only from an examination of the sources he used and so I have given the full Japanese text of all the relevant material, which is the only material so far known to me that is both unconnected with aikido and also mentions Morihei Ueshiba by name. Since Nakano published his novel before his edition of Hashimoto's notes, the novel comes first: the extract is of the early part of Chapter 16 and I have added some explanatory notes.

Nakano Masao's Historical Novel『三人の放火者』
Nadolski does not cite Nakano Masao's novel as direct evidence that Deguchi Onisaburo was involved in the assassinations. He cites it as indirect evidence, based on the fact that Nakano used Hashimoto's notes as direct evidence. The first few pages of Nakano Masao's novel contain several photographs. They are photographs of the following persons, listed in order of appearance (family names first):
Hashimoto Kingoro [橋本欣五郎]; Shigeto Chiaki [重藤千秋]; Cho Isamu [長勇]; Komoto Daisaku [河本大作]; Fujita Isamu [藤田勇]; Wachi Takaji [和知鷹治; 和知鷹二]; Doihara Kenji [土肥原賢二], seated in the photograph talking to the author; Sugiyama Gen / Hajime [杉山元]; Honjo Shigeru [本庄繁]; Tojo Hideki [東條英機]; Tatekawa Yoshitsugu [建川美次]; Araki Sadao [荒木貞夫]; Itagaki Seishiro [板垣征四郎]; Okawa Shumei [大川周明]; Kuhara Fusanosuke [久原房之助]; Kita Ikki [北一輝].

The names of some persons, like Tojo Hideki, will perhaps be familiar to those who do not practice aikido and some names (of, for example, Fujita Isamu, Araki Sadao and Okawa Shumei) appear in the biography of Morihei Ueshiba written by his son Kisshomaru. All except Fujita Isamu are listed in the Japanese version of Wikipedia and the names have been given above in Chinese characters, in order that those who read Japanese can check these biographies.

After the photographs, Nakano has added an author's note [記: ki], dated 19 September, 1956:


本書は、故藤田勇氏の「戦争は世界的に共通している軍部(参謀本部)の陰謀形式によるもので、これを明らかにして今後の平和運動に資したい。」とい う意志による資料をもととし、さらに藤田初未亡人、大川周明博士、橋本欣五郎元大佐、和知鷹治元中将、荒木貞夫元大将、徳川義親元侯爵、久原房之助、中西 伸次、野村胡堂、柳原緑風の諸氏を始め、其地多数の方々の協力を得たものである。

昭和三十一年九月十九日
中野雅夫
The note makes clear that Nakano produced the work in accordance with Fujita Isamu's dying wish that future peace initiatives should include some clarification of the conspiracy-style activities common to waging war. To this end Nakano consulted many of those named above (some of whom did not have photographs in the first pages of the novel) and also others unnamed. These consultations formed the basis of his novel.

Fujita Isamu
Fujita Isamu appears on the list and also has a special mention in Kisshomaru Ueshiba's biography. Kisshomaru is discussing the days before the Kobukan Dojo was constructed, when training took place in private residences in Mita and Shiba. Each sentence in Japanese is followed by the English translation from A Life in Aikido.
いずれにせよ、三田綱町時代とこれにつづく芝車町時代は"合気道の夜明け"ともいうべき活気ある時期であった。
"In any case, this time in Tsunamchi, Mita and Kurumamachi, Shiba was truly vibrant, and you could say it was the dawn of aikido.

従来からの門弟に加えて、新たに多士済々、異色の顏ぶれも混じって賑わいを呈した。
The dojo drew people from all walks of life.

すでにこれまでおりにふれた挙げたがた以外に、たとえば海軍大学校長であった高橋三吉大将はじめ山本英輔、百武源吾、蓮沼蕃、近藤信竹ほかの陸海軍将星、
Besides those I have already mentioned, such as Admiral Sankichi Takahashi, the director of the Naval Academy, members included leading generals of the army and navy such as Eisuke Yamamoto, Gengo Hyakutake, Shigeru Hasunuma, and Nobutake Kondo.

また藤田勇氏(赤坂霊南坂に居を講え当時の智者として知られていた事業家)のつ、て、で名優六代目菊五郎丈、演劇評論の第一人者たる松居松翁氏、あるいは『大菩薩峠』の中 里介山氏なども入門されている。
Isamu Fujita was a prominent businessman who lived in Reinanzaka, Akasaka, and was known for being one of the leading intellectuals of the day; he brought to the dojo people such as the Kabuki actors Kikugoro-jo the Sixth and Ennosuke-jo, the prominent theater critique [sic] Sho-o Matsui, and the writer Kaizan Nakazato, known for his novel Daibosatsu Toge.

学生柔道界のホープと謳われていた笠原厳夫氏や阿部信文氏なども、この時期の入門者であり、後に相撲の大の里関も稽古に来た。(植芝吉相丸, 『合気道開祖植芝盛平伝』, pp. 191 -- 192.)
Itsuo Kasahara and Nobufumi Abe were regarded as up-and-coming stars in university level Judo, and they too joined as disciples at this time. Later, the sumo wrestler Onosato came to practice as well." (Kisshomaru Ueshiba, A Life in Aikido, pp. 200 -- 201.)
Kisshomaru Ueshiba's mention of Isamu Fujita and his place of residence is quite apposite, for much of the action of Nakano Masao's novel takes place in Fujita's residence in Reinanzaka, in the Akasaka district of Tokyo. The first few paragraphs set the scene, with a detailed description of the house and its general surroundings, now swallowed up by the large US embassy building (the embassy is mentioned in the text) and modern high-rise developments like the Roppongi Ark Hills complex. Fujita's elegant residence clearly matched his status as a wealthy businessman and well-known intellectual, but it is the latter status—and one that Kisshomaru does not dwell on in his biography—that would have attracted Fujita to issues like those he grapples with in Nakano's novel. Sannin no Houkasha really needs to be read in conjunction with the historical novels of Shiba Ryotaro, with his (Nakano's) non-fiction works, and with the works of writers like Maruyama Masao, discussed in previous columns, who tried to form a respectable intellectual and ideological bridge between the dark 1930s and the brighter 1950s and 60s in Japan.
藤田勇の邸宅は赤坂霊南坂にあった。そこは愛宕山に近い小山で、首相官邸は目と鼻の間にある。霊南坂というのはその小山のとっかかりで、アメリカ大使館と大倉集古館にはさ まれた長さ二町ばかりの急な坂のことだ。
鉄筋コンクリート五階健の藤田邸はその坂をのぼりつめたところに、アメリカ大使館を見下ろすように、立っていた。
玄関は二階にあった。道路からは、美しい青石で造った傾斜の急な階段を昇る。階段両側には大きな蘭の鉢植がでんと据えてあって、彼を訪れる人々はまずその階段で度肝をぬか れてしまう。
玄関の正面は赤い絨毯をしきつめた広間で、右側に応接があった。広間のつき当たりには三階へののぼる白い階段が、窓の色とりどりのモザイクガラスに照りはえて、いつも同じ ような軟い色彩に浮き上っている。
三階はひろびろした書斎と、いくつかに区切られた居間であった。書斎には大きな机と、安楽椅子、卓上には灰皿とメモがいつもおいてある。
(中野雅夫, 『三人の放火者』, p. 5.)
After this delicately atmospheric description, which suggests that he visited the house often enough to be aware of its layout, Nakano gets to grips with the action of the novel, which begins on one August day in 1931. The novel largely views unfolding events through Fujita's eyes, as if the narrator were standing behind him all the time. Throughout the novel Fujita is portrayed as an ‘honest broker', carefully listening and advising, mindful of the problems facing Japan. As the plot develops, there are elaborate discussions with the main characters: Hashimoto Kingoro, Shigeto Chiaki and Okawa Shumei. For example, there is an extensive discussion about the Sakurakai [Cherry Blossom Society] in Chapter Ten, with a list of members. This list can be compared with a similar list on pp. 314 -- 316 of Appendix I in Richard Storry's The Double Patriots. (Apart from the Japanese -- English language difference, the names match.) The first part of Chapter Sixteen recounts the visit of the Omoto believers to Fujita's house and also Fujita's suggestion that they should go with him to Morihei Ueshiba's dojo. The Japanese text of this part is given in paragraphs below (with very occasional revision of older Chinese characters) and is followed by a summary in English (not a close and full translation) with comments where necessary.
十六

「大本教からお人がお見えです。」
と女中に呼ばれて、藤田は階下へおりた。二階の玄関前の広間が人でいっぱいだった。 藤田は思わず目を見張った。二十歳前後の粒を揃えた青年が、大 本教、と襟に白く染めぬいた法被をきて、床の上に両膝をきちんと揃えている。先頭に引率者らしい半白の髪の男がいる。それが両手をつかえていた。
「貴方が藤田さんですか。私は矢野という海軍予備大佐です、我々二十名の者は、今回、出口王仁三郎から、藤田さんの所へ行って死んでこい、といわれました。ここで死なして 頂きますから、どのようにでもお使い下さい。」
Fujita was summoned by a maid to his living room, which was full of young people. They were led by a captain of the naval reserve, named Yano, who declared that he and his twenty companions had been commanded by Onisaburo Deguchi to go to Mr Fujita's house and die, in any way that Fujita chose.
藤田はどきっとした。漏れたな、と思ったのだ。同時に彼は綾部で出口に会った時の茫洋とした化物のような出口の顔を思い出した。東京毎日新聞の社長 をしている時だ。藤田は三日間、出口の邸に泊まりこんで彼と宗教論をたたかわした。そのとき大本教は天皇制をはっきり不定しているのを知ったのだ。
Fujita was stunned. He then recalled a 3-day visit to Deguchi's residence in Ayabe, when the two debated religious questions. He was head of the Tokyo Mainichi Shinbun [newspaper] at the time. He notes that at that time Omoto had made no clear decision about the emperor system.
「今の天皇は偽物だよ、あれが天皇なら、国民の一人一人も天皇だし、勿論おれだって天皇だよ。」
と出口はうそぶいた。
「皇后が子供に乳を飲ましたといって恐懼感激している新聞の気がしれんね、母親が子供に乳飲ますのは当たりまえだよ、そんなことに恐懼感激しとれば、裏長屋は恐懼感激で歩 けんなよ。」
彼は公然と綾部を皇后といっている。藤田はそんな王仁と意気統合して東京に帰ると、新聞の全頁をさいて大本教を紹介してやった。それいらい出口とは 親しいが、ここ二、三年は何の交渉もないので、彼はそんな決死隊を送られてみると、今更のように恐ろしい奴だと思うのだ。が考えてみると藤田は、王仁が革 命の秘密を知ったのも不思議でない、と思った。大本教には官吏や軍人、それも陸海軍の将官級の信者が可なりいる筈だ、或は革命本部の中にも隠してはいるが 信者がいるかもしれない、そんな信者から情報が伝ったのだろう、しかしとぼけられるだけ、とぼけてみようと彼は思った。
Fujita continued his own musings about Deguchi and considered the latter's colorful opinions about the emperor and the imperial family. He noted that he had got to know Deguchi quite well and had introduced Omoto to the readers of his newspaper. However, there had been an absence of contact over the past three years and Fujita sensed a difference between Deguchi's earlier thinking and his thinking in the present situation, with him apparently sending a suicide squad to Fujita. It was likely that Deguchi had become aware of the planned secret ‘incident', since there were Omoto believers in the higher ranks of the military and also probably under cover within the main group planning the revolt.
「何のことですかね、死んでこいというのは、僕のところには何もありませんよ。」
と彼は横を向いていた。
「いや、私達も何があるかは知りません、ただ王仁三郎が藤田さんの所へ行って死んでこい、と申しますので、死にに来ただけです。ここで死なして頂きますからどの様でもお使 い下さい。」
矢野はおだやかな語調だが、ひやりとするいい方をした。藤田はそうねばられるとやはり拒みきれなかった。
「それでは、ともかく今日は狭いが私の家にとまって、明日は私の知りあいの家へ行って貰いましょう。」
Fujita told Yano that it was pointless for his group to end their lives in his house, but Yano simply repeated that this was what Onisaburo had commanded them to do. So Fujita suggested that they stay there till morning, when he would take them to see a friend of his.
藤田は明く日、二十人を牛込若松町の皇武館へつれてゆき、館主植芝師範に預けた。植芝は大本教の信者だし、武道の道場だから場所も広い、二十人や三 十人ごろごろしていても目立つほどでもない。植芝は気合術の名人で、気合一つで四人や五人を投げとばす奇妙な武術の持主で、古武道のようだ。藤田は二十人 を預けるとほっとした。」
The following day, Fujita took the group to the large Kobukan Dojo in Ushigome Wakamatsu-cho and entrusted them to the care of the shihan, Morihei Ueshiba. Ueshiba was an Omoto believer who was known for possessing outstanding skill in the art of kiai-jutsu and could mysteriously throw four or five people with one kiai: it was reminiscent of kobudo. Fujita was relieved to have taken the group to Ueshiba.
彼は自分でも可笑しいほど熱中して革命政権の政策について構想を練った。鉛筆をなめ、机に顔をくっつけて図面を書いたり表をつくったりした。そんな 藤田のところへ橋本がひょっこりやってきたのは十六日の昼であった。十月十七日は祭日で十八日は日曜である。二日続きの休みだ、と藤田は何気なく思いなが ら二階の応接に入れた。(中野雅夫, 『三人の放火者』, pp. 129 -- 131.)
Before moving on to other topics, Fujita muses on his own involvement with the reform plots and recalls a mid-day visit by Hashimoto Kingoro to his house on October 16 (which was the day before Hashimoto was arrested).

GENERAL COMMENT. Nothing more is stated about either the group of young Omoto fanatics or Morihei Ueshiba. Nor is anything stated about any meeting between Hashimoto Kingoro and Deguchi Onisaburo himself. Noteworthy, however, is Fujita's reference to Morihei Ueshiba's expertise in kiai-jutsu, not aikido, and his comparison of Ueshiba's skill with old budo arts. Kisshomaru Ueshiba's reference to Fujita in his biography had him visiting Morihei Ueshiba's dojo in the years immediately before the Kobukan was opened. There is a close kinship between kiai-jutsu and the Daito-ryu aiki-jutsu of Takeda Sokaku, which Ueshiba learned from Takeda and actually called his art during these years.

Hashimoto Kingoro's Notes
As Nadolski stated in his thesis, Nakano Masao decided to edit and publish Hashimoto's notes partly because of the hostile reception given to his portrayal of the young Omoto believers in his novel (quoted above). There were more general reasons for publishing the notes, however, and Nakano gives some explanation about their provenance in the prologue, epilogue and atogaki [あとがき: postscript]. The resulting book is about 200 pages in length and is divided into over 40 unnumbered sections, each with a title. The relevant section here is 「在鄕軍人愛国団体の指導」: [Zaiko-gunjin Aikoku-dantai no Shidou] and appears on pp. 145 -- 150. The vast bulk of text is Nakano's commentary, which is also reproduced here as a check on Nadolski's argument and conclusions. (In fact, Nadolski appears not to have used the commentary very much.)
「在鄕軍人愛国団体の指導」
A. First comes the text of Hashimoto's notes. The section begins and ends in single quotation marks: 「 」and I have numbered the paragraphs. The fourth paragraph has been transcribed in Roman script, so that readers of Japanese can check the translation given by Nadolski.
1. 「事件決行の為には先づ大衆を改造の為高調に達せしむる必要あり、之れが為には満州事変を利用し「国家改造するにあらざれば事件を遂行し得ず」てふ主趣により万事の 行動を律す。
2. 此対象として学者、学生、官使、事業家等に吹込みたるも波等は何等の勇気無く、殆んど効力無し。
3. 在鄕軍人、愛国団体は大いに見るべきものあり、在鄕軍人の指導に就いて浅草、日本橋、下谷等意識多少ある分会長と懇親を求め、此分会長を通じ 東京市の囲繞する地方の分会長の結合を求め、一朝有事の際、在鄕軍人を動員する事に務め、且つ資金を与え名所に於て講演会を催かしめ、之に桜会の現役将校 をして講演せしめ、大に気勢を揚げしめたり。次で此催しは地方に及び、千葉県、岐阜、信濃等相当猛然を極めたり。
The first three paragraphs recount the general preparations for the ‘incident', the main aim being to build on the fruits of the military incursion in Manchuria. ‘Spontaneous' demonstrations were to be organized involving various groups and these were to be guided by the military reservists and the officers of the Sakurakai.
4. 愛国団体としては大川周明の行地社、岩田愛之助の愛国社等を指導し、共に優秀なる成績を示し、背後の予に対する援助者として神戸の松尾忠二 郎、万俵喜蔵、藤田勇等大いに努む(め?)る処あり。又大本教出口王仁三郎は特に予に面会を求め、有事の際は東京に次で全国の信者を動員すべく、予の身辺 護衛として植芝剣士を捧げたり。
Aikoku dantai toshite wa Okawa Shumei no Koukisha, Iwata Ainosuke no Aikokusha nado wo shidou shi, tomo ni yuushu naru seiseki wo shime shi, haigo no yo ni tai suru enjosha toshite Kobe no Matsuo Chujiro, Mandawara Kizo, Fujita Isamu nado ooi ni tsutomuru tokoro ari. Mata, Omoto kyo Deguchi Onisaburo wa tokuni yo ni menkai wo motome, yuji no sai wa Tokyo ni tsugi de zenkoku no shinja wo douin subeku, yo no shinpen goei toshite Ueshiba kenshi wo sasagetari.
Among the groups which led the way, showing support for the action were Okawa Shumei's Koukisha and Iwata Ainosuke's Aikokusha, together showing excellent enthusiasm. Among those behind the plot were these supporters: Matsuo Chujiro of Kobe, Mandawara Kizo and Fujita Isamu. Moreover Deguchi Onisaburo especially sought an interview with me. He said he would mobilize his followers in Tokyo and then throughout the country, should the need arise, and he would give me Ueshiba Kenshi as a bodyguard.
5. 斯の如くにして急速に吾人桜会の思想は全国に及び、既政政党の撲滅、天皇一体の政治は津々浦々に迄侵入し、此思想は昭和時代の政治的思想論の中心思想となり、以後各 種の歴史の根本を形成す。」(中野雅夫, 『橋本大佐の手記』, pp. 145 -- 146.)
In response, the ideas of Hashimoto and his Sakurakai colleagues would quickly extend nationwide, with the old government destroyed and new direct rule by the emperor established that would also embody the new thinking of Showa.

GENERAL COMMENT: The crucial part involving Morihei Ueshiba is the fourth paragraph, which is the part that Nadolski quoted in his thesis in English translation. However, Hashimoto repeated these statements, in much the same form, in other places. One such place was a separate set of notes entitled, 『昭和歴史の源泉』 [Shouwa Rekishi no Gensen: The Fountainhead of Showa History]. These were published by Nakano Masao in 1973, as an appendix to his 『昭和史の原点2』[Shouwa-shi no Genten 2: The Starting Point of Showa History 2].

B. Directly after this section comes an extended commentary by Nakano himself. Again, I have numbered the paragraphs and also added a brief English summary to each.
1. 当時の国民は既に書いていたように困窮の結果革命を待望していて、腐敗政治にあいそをつかしている。この社会的背景に桜会員が兵を牽いて決起 する。在鄕軍人八十方がこれに呼応する、無産党三派は三月事件いらいの関係で労働者農民を牽いて加わるだろう、これに加えて大本教四十方の信徒が蹶起す る。満州では戦闘中の関東軍が呼応する。こうなれば嫌でも革命は成功したであろう。
As had been previously written, the popular mood was ripe for revolution, in order to sweep away the corrupt government. Against this social background the Sakurakai worked assiduously to enlist the support of various groups. To these groups were added Omoto believers. Omoto had developed a good relationship with the Kwantung Army during the incursion into Manchuria.
2. これが一九三六年(昭和十一年)の二・二六事件になると社会的背景が違ってくる。満州ブームがあって失業者は減少し景気は回復している。軍人 内閣が出現してすでに既政党は小さくなっている。国民の生活はゆとりが出来て革命待望の空気は消衰している。革命の時期でないのに蹶起したのであるから、 国民の支持も同情ない、孤立無援の末に壊滅である。彼らが情勢判断を誤った証拠である。
The earlier incidents led to the Feb 26 Incident in 1936, but the social background of the Imperial Colors Incident in 1931 was somewhat different from that of the Feb 26 Incident in 1936. The ‘Manchuria boom' and the consequent improved living conditions were cooling the popular fervor for revolution that had existed before.
3. 大本教について筆者は『三人の放火者』でふれたときある歴史者から「そんな馬鹿なことはない」と批判をうけた。馬鹿げていようがいまいた事実は事実であるからどうし ようもない。
When Sannin no Houkasha was published, a historian criticized the portrayal of Omoto and stated that such a stupid thing did not / could not have happened. Be that as it may, the portrayal was based on the truth.
COMMENT: Nakano mentions his novel but not the name of the historian who criticized his portrayal of Yano and his band of Omoto believers as foolish: 「そんな馬鹿なことはない」[Sonna bakana koto wa nai: Such a stupid event did not happen]. Nakano insists that his portrayal was based on the truth.
4. 大本教は一八九二年(明治二十五年)丹波福知山の出口なお子が開祖、出口王仁三郎はなお子を助けて聖師といわれた。出口の思想を示す一端をあげよう。
The Omoto religion was founded in Meiji 25 (1892) by Deguchi Nao with the assistance of Deguchi Onisaburo, who was said to be a 聖師 [seishi, which is best translated as ‘holy teacher']. A few examples of Deguchi's teachings follow.
COMMENT: Nakano goes on to discuss Deguchi and Omoto. He begins with a brief account of the founders of Omoto and then quotes Deguchi himself. The quotations are within single quotation marks 「」and are followed by a transcription of the Japanese in Roman script and my own translation.
「軍備なり戦いは、みな地主と資本主とのためにこそあるべけれ、貧しきものには限りなき苦しみの基となるものなり」
Gunbi nari tatakai wa, mina jinushi to shihon nushi to no tame ni koso aru bekere, mazushiki mono ni wa kagiri naki kurushimi no motoi to naru mono nari
Military preparation and fighting benefits all those who own the land and who own the capital. It becomes the basis of suffering without limit for the poor.

「軍備や戦争のために、あまたの人は徴兵の義務を負わざるべからず。一つより無き肉体を捨てて血の河、骨の山をつくられねばならざるなり。多くの税金を政府へ払わざるべか らす。」
Gunbi ya senso no tameni, amata no hito wa chouhei no gimu wo owazaru bekarazu. Hitotsu yori naki nikutai wo sutete chi no kawa, hone no yama wo tsukuraneba narazaru nari. Ooku no zeikin wo seifu e hara-wazaru-bekarasu.
For the sake of military preparation and war, the duty of conscription is imposed on so many people. We are forced to create a river of blood or a mountain of bones by throwing away our own bodies. We are also forced to pay heavy taxes to the government.

「世のなかに戦争ぐらい悪しきものはなく、軍備ぐらいつまらぬものはなし」
Yo no naka ni senso gurai ashiki mono wa naku, gunbi gurai tsumaranu-mono wa nashi
In the world there is nothing more evil than war, nothing more valueless than military preparation.

「やまと魂とは平和、文明、自由、独立、人権を破るものにむかつてあくまで戦う精神をいうなり。無理非道なる強き悪魔を倒して弱きものの権利をまもる精神なり 」
Yamato damashii towa heiwa, bunmei, jiyu, dokuritsu, jinken wo yaburu mono ni mukatte akumade tatakau seishin wo iu nari. Muri hido naru tsuyoki akuma wo taoshite yowaki mono no kenri wo mamoru seishin nari
What we mean by the soul of Yamato is the spirit that fights until the very end those who destroy peace, civilization, freedom, independence and human rights. It is the spirit that topples the strong devils of senseless tyranny and protects the rights of the weak.

「天帝はいずれの人権をも等しく愛し給う、これ世界の民草はみな天帝の御子なればなり」
Tentei wa izure no jinken wo mo hitoshiku ai shi tamau, kore sekai no tamikusa wa mina tentei no miko nareba nari
The Lord of Heaven is pleased to love the rights of all without any distinction. This is because all the people in this world are children of the Lord.

「肩書ばかりの貴人をうらやむなかれ、名刺の上の紳士となるなかれ、金銀のお化けとなるなかれ、かれらは世の中の毒虫にして神のみ心にかなわざるものなり」
Katagaki bakari no kijin wo urayamu nakare, meishi no ue no shinshi to naru nakare, kingin no obake to naru nakare, karera wa yo no naka no dokumushi ni shite kami no migokoro ni kanawazaru mono nari
We should not envy nobles simply on account of their titles, nor become gentlemen of name cards, nor become monsters of gold and silver. These people are the poisonous insects of the world and people who do not meet the honored spirit of the gods.

「貧しき者に善人多く、富める人に悪人多き今の世界、正しき者、あわれみある者は馬鹿といわれる暗がりの世の中、不正の金でも服装をかざりて立派にみせたら人のあがめる逆 さまの世の中なり」
Mazushiki mono ni zennin ooku, tomeru hito ni akunin ooki ima no sekai, tadashiki mono, awaremi aru mono wa baka to iwareru kuragari no yo no naka, fusei no kane demo fukusou wo kazari te rippa ni misetara hito no agameru sakasama no yo no naka nari
In the world at present, [there are] many fine people who are poor, many evil people who are rich. In the world, there is darkness, where good people, people who have compassion, are said to be fools. In the world, everything is the wrong way round, where extravagant people, people who dress up with dirty money are admired.

「ちりあくたの如く踏みにじられ、いやしめられたるいとも低い国民の中から英雄豪傑のおこるものぞ、天帝のみ心によりて降し給うものなれば、ついによく名を成し世の益を開 くことを得るものぞ」
Chiriakuta no gotoku fumi nijirare, iyashimeraretaru ito mo hikui kokumin no naka kara eiyuu gouketsu no okoru mono zo, tentei no migokoro ni yori te kudashi tamau mono nareba, tsui ni yoku na wo nashi yo no eki wo hiraku koto wo eru mono zo
From among the lowly citizens who are being trampled under foot for being rubbish, being held in contempt, courageous heroes will arise. If they are people who are sent by the honored spirit of the Heavenly God, they will gain fame and achieve benefits for the world.

5. 以上は日露戦争当時の手記である。六十年後の現在においてもそのまま通用するだろう。ということは、文明といい文化というも。六十年間に人間 は一歩も進歩しなかったことである。だがこの思想では弾圧を受けざるをえない。大本教は一九二一年(大正十年)と一九三五年(昭和十年)に治安維持法違 反、不敬罪で大弾圧をうけ、王仁三郎は前後七年未決に拘留される。
The above aphorisms were made by Deguchi at the time of the Russo-Japanese War of 1904 -- 1905. However, Nakano, who spent a few years in prison for his anti-war activities, believes that Deguchi's comments can be applied without qualification to the sixty years following, culminating in the present situation. Though the talk was of civilization and culture, there has been little progress in this sixty-year interval. On the other hand, given radical opinions like these, the suppressions of the Omoto religion seemed, according to Nakano, unavoidable. The accusations of lese majeste and sedition remained unproven, but Onisaburo spent around seven years in prison.
COMMENT: Nakano's reference to sixty years is explained by the fact that he published this edition of Hashimoto's memoirs in 1963, during the time of the Cold War and almost 60 years after the Russo-Japanese War. The Russo-Japanese War broke out only twelve years after the founding of the religion. Nakano notes that Deguchi's acid aphorisms came from shuki [手記], which, like Hashimoto's, were his notes. Nakano also follows the irritating Japanese precedent of not giving any precise sources. In fact, the aphorisms were taken from a work entitled Michi no Shiori [『道のしおり』: Signposts along the Way], written by Deguchi in 1905.

GENERAL COMMENT: The Russo-Japanese War has sometimes been called World War Zero and most accounts deal with the political and international aspect of the war. The latest account in Japanese, for example, is by Yamada Akira and was published in 2011. It is entitled 『世界史の中の日露戦争』[The Russo-Japanese War in World History] and deals with the war from the point of view of Japan's military capacity vis-à-vis that of her allies and of Russia. Few accounts deal with the social and economic aspects of the war, especially as this affected the Japanese people. An exception is Japanese Society and War, by Naoko Shimazu. Shimazu emphasizes the extent of popular opposition to the war and discusses the main opposition groups. The new religions are not included in these opposition groups and Shimazu appears not to have read Deguchi's works. Of course, Morihei Ueshiba fought in this war long before he met Deguchi and became an Omoto adherent. According to Kisshomaru Ueshiba's biography, he fought as an enthusiastic conscript and was eventually promoted to sergeant. He wanted to participate in frontline combat, but seems to have been hindered from doing so by his father, and also because he was the only son in the Ueshiba family and it was largely accepted by the military authorities that firstborn sons had a duty to carry on the family. Kisshomaru suggests that Ueshiba went to the war because he was patriotic, like any other good Japanese, but Shimazu strongly argues that such an attitude, which is part of the orthodox ‘official' history of the war, is overly simplistic.
6. 橋本が出口と親交を結んだのは第一次弾圧後の一九二五年(大正十四年)で、橋本が満州里の特務機関長時代に蒙古の紅屯教と大本の交流のあっせんをし、出口の蒙古入り に便宜をはかったからである。
Hashimoto Kingoro became a friend of Deguchi's around 1925, a few years after the first suppression. At that time he was head of a special military section in Mongolia and his friendship with Deguchi facilitated the latter's trips to Mongolia.
COMMENT: Hashimoto's comment here should be compared with the conversation with Deguchi dictated by Hashimoto to Handa in 1957 (reproduced below), shortly before Hashimoto died. In that conversation, Deguchi appears to meet Hashimoto for the first time.
7. 出口が十月事件に全国の信徒を動員する意思を示したのは、橋本が逆さまの世の中を大改革するため国民の中から出た英雄豪傑であり「強き悪魔を 倒して弱きを守る」やまと魂の特主とみたからだろう。出口が橋本に護衛として捧げた植芝剣士は合気道の名人植芝範士である。(中野雅夫, 『橋本大佐の手記』, pp. 147 -- 150.)
COMMENT: Nakano's final sentence explains that the Ueshiba Kenshi referred to by Deguchi, when he told Hashimoto that he would send Ueshiba Kenshi as his bodyguard, was "Ueshiba Hanshi [範士], famous for aikido." Since Nakano wrote his commentary in 1963, just six years before Ueshiba's death, he quite reasonably gave the art its proper name, and not the kiai-jutsu referred to in his novel. However, his referring to Ueshiba as Hanshi suggests that he was unfamiliar with aikido.

In the final paragraph of his commentary on this section of Hashimoto's notes (not quoted here), Nakano offers some background to the above role of Omoto by briefly discussing the intervention of religious groups in Japanese politics scene from the Heian period onwards. His point is that the offer of Deguchi Onisaburo to supply supporters and a bodyguard for assassination attempts is not particularly unusual, given the many historical precedents.

Hashimoto Kingoro's Oral Discourses
In addition to the notes edited by Nakano Masao and quoted above, Hashimoto Kingoro recorded other reminiscences, including『橋本欣五郎口述』 [Hashimoto Kingoro Koujutsu: ‘Koujutsu' meaning ‘Oral Statements / Dictation'], which were made in 1957 to a military colleague named Handa Toshiharu. (Hashimoto died of cancer in the same year.) These oral statements were part of the material used by Hashimoto's biographer, Tatamiya Eitarou, and the result, 『 橋本欣五郎一代』 [Hashimoto Kingoro Ichidai: Hashimoto Kingoro -- A Life], was published in 1982. Tatamiya discusses the March and October Incidents extensively and includes the material dictated by Hashimoto to Handa. According to Hashimoto's statement, a meeting took place at the Reinanzaka residence of Fujita Isamu and included both Deguchi Onisaburo and Morihei Ueshiba. The oral statements expand considerably on the written notes made earlier by Hashimoto and the relevant section deserves to be quoted in full. (Hashimoto made his remarks in the first person, but the English summary does not do this.)
革命を行わんとする約十日ほど前に、藤田勇の仲介で、大本教の聖師出口王仁三郎氏と霊南坂の藤田邸で会った。この邸の立派な応接間に入ってみると、六尺豊かな堂々たる体驅 出口王仁三郎氏が、机にむかって腰かけていた。
About ten days before the revolt [The October / Imperial Colors Incident, 1931] was due to take place, Onisaburo Deguchi and Morihei Ueshiba met Hashimoto through the good offices of Fujita Isamu. The meeting took in place at Fujita's residence in Reinanzaka, Tokyo. Deguchi sat in all his glory in an elegant reception room.
僕が入っていくと
「あなたが参謀本部の橋本さんですか、世のたて直しをやられるそうですね……"海の花"……」とこういった。そのあとにいささか記憶はうすらいだが、
「あなたが立ちあがったその日に、大本教徒三千人を助員します。その翌日には一万人、それから次へ次へと、東京に十万の信徒をあつめてあなたに参加させます。その点ご心配 ないように……」
という話であった。僕はなんぼ大本教でも、そんなに多数の信徒が集まるものかしら、もしそれが出来れば実力はすばらしいものだと思った。その話がすむと、すぐ出口王仁三郎 氏は、
「あなたを護衛するために、手勢をお貸ししましょう」
といってベルを押す、隣の部屋から出てきたのが、そのときの合気道の植芝盛平先生であった。
When Hashimoto entered the room, Deguchi checked that he was speaking to Hashimoto of the General Staff Headquarters and then stated that he had heard that Hashimoto was going to ‘change the world'. Hashimoto's memory was somewhat rusty about what followed, but he stated that Deguchi offered the help of 3,000 Omoto believers. There would be 10,000 on the following day and up to 100,000 believers in Tokyo could participate. Hashimoto was very pleasantly surprised. Deguchi then stated that he would furnish him with a bodyguard to protect him. He pressed a bell and Morihei Ueshiba entered from the adjoining room.
すろと、植芝先生は、応接間の絨氈の上にベッタリ座りこんで平身低頭し、あたかも天皇陛下にでも対し奉るかのごとく出口王仁三郎氏にむかって「何かご用ですか 」と問うた。
出口氏は
「橋本さんが近々、世の立て直しをやられるそうな、ついては、橋本さんの身辺の護衛をせよ」と命じた。
Ueshiba made an obeisance to Deguchi in deep seiza (as if to the emperor) and asked what Deguchi wanted him to do. Deguchi answered that Mr Hashimoto was going to change the world and told Ueshiba to give him personal protection.
すると、植芝先生は、ハハ……ッといって次の間にさがった。それがすむと出口氏は、まったく一個人の出口になって二、三十分間、女の話だの社会の雑事などたわいもないこと を話して別れた。
Ueshiba assented and retired to another room. Deguchi then indulged in small talk for 20 or 30 minutes and then left.
(中略)[meaning, material omitted]
出口氏との会見がすんで、すぐ植芝先生に会うと
「事をおこした瞬間から、あなたの身辺に七人の合気武道の達人を付けします。これは少なくみても、七十人力の力はありますからご安心なさい。第二日になれば、さらに、二三 倍に増します」
と約束してくれた。爾来、出口王仁三郎氏および植芝先生とはじっこんになったが、これは省くことにする。(田々宮英太郎『橋本欣五郎一代』, pp. 161-162.)
Immediately after the meeting with Deguchi, Hashimoto had a meeting with Morihei Ueshiba. Ueshiba promised him that the instant anything happened, seven experts in aiki-budo would be near him. Although seemingly few in number, they had the power of 70, so that Hashimoto should not worry. If necessary, on the second day the seven could be increased two or three times.

GENERAL COMMENT: Even though Hashimoto admits that his memory was no longer sharp, on the basis of Hashimoto's reminiscences there is no reason to doubt that the meeting actually took place and that it also involved Morihei Ueshiba. However, both the circumstances of the meeting and the reference to Morihei Ueshiba's attendance on Hashimoto as a bodyguard have been called into question by Deguchi Kyotaro and this point needs to be examined, for Kyotaro's biography was cited by Nadolski as evidence that a meeting between Hashimoto and Deguchi had indeed taken place.

Deguchi Kyotaro and Matsumoto Seicho
We left Nadolski quoting Hashimoto Kingoro in support of his claim that Deguchi Onisaburo actively supported the plotters of the ‘incidents' in 1931 and offered manpower to help with the barricades and a bodyguard for his own protection. (Presumably, Hashimoto knew about Morihei Ueshiba's role in Manchuria in 1921.) Nadolski continues his discussion in the main text of his thesis and states that confirmation that a meeting had indeed occurred between Hashimoto and Deguchi was given to Princess Tsurudono Chikako. The reference given by Nadolski is to Deguchi Kyotaro's hagiographic biography of Deguchi Onisaburo, of which the English title is The Great Onisaburo Deguchi. No mention is made of the alleged meeting between Hashimoto and Deguchi at Fujita Isamu's residence, quoted above, and Nadolski's reference suggests that he did not have access to Hashimoto's oral statements (quoted above), dictated towards the end of his life to Handa Toshiharu.

However, the pages referred to by Nadolski in Deguchi Kyotaro's biography contains extracts that are almost identical to the oral statements given by Hashimoto in his dictation to Handa Toshiharu, but the extracts are not identified as such. They are quoted by Kyotaro from a collection of essays by Matsumoto Seicho, entitled Showa Shi Hatsukutsu [昭和史発屈]. The essay in question is "Sakurakai no Yabo" [「桜会」の野望: Aspirations of the Cherry Blossom Society] and contains the first part of the episode where Hashimoto meets Deguchi Onisaburo in the residence of Fujita Isamu, always referred to by Deguchi as ‘Fujita Danshaku' (Baron Fujita). Deguchi quotes the part where Deguchi enters the house, sits in majesty and offers Hashimoto the progressive support of 3,000, 10,000 and 100,000 Omoto believers. He ends the quote with Matsumoto's own comment about its accuracy.

これは橋本欣五郎が書いていることをそのまま取り次ぐので、真偽のほどは保証できない。__
Kore wa Hashimoto Kingoro ga kaite iru koto wo sono mama toritsugu no de, shingi no hodo wa hoshou dekinai. ————
This [the quoted portion] is quoted directly as Hashimoto Kingoro wrote it, but its truth or falsity cannot be attested. ————
これは、十月事件の計画が漏洩して橋本が逮捕される直前の昭和六年の秋が舞台となっているだが、松本清張氏も保証できないといっておられるように、王仁三郎と橋本の会話の 内容はだいぶ歪曲されているように感じられる。
Kore wa, juugatsu jiken no keikaku ga roueki shite Hashimoto ga taiho sareru chokuzen no Shouwa rokunen no aki ga butai to natte iru daga, Matsumoto Seicho shi mo hoshou dekinai to itte orareru youni, Onisaburo to Hashimoto no kaiwa no naiyou wa daibu waikyoku sarete iru youni kanjirareru.
This [the quoted portion] relates the events that supposedly took place in the autumn of Showa 6 (1931), immediately before Hashimoto was arrested while making preparations for the October Incident. However, Matsumoto Seicho also would not have been able to attest the truth or falsity [of what Hashimoto wrote] and I feel that that the content of the discussions between Onisaburo and Hashimoto has been greatly distorted.
COMMENT: The question of attesting the truth or falsity of what was discussed between Deguchi and Hashimoto would not only concern Matsumoto Seicho. Nakano Masao actually published several non-fiction works about Hashimoto and in two of them he reproduces Hashimoto's statement about the meeting with Deguchi which was quoted by Nadolski. Tatamiya Eitarou, who published Hashimoto Kingoro's biography in 1982, reproduced the much more detailed reminiscences that were dictated by Hashimoto in 1957 to his military colleague. Both of these authors appear to have gone to great lengths to interview many of the figures involved. Nakano became a friend of Fujita Isamu and published his novel as a kind of testament to him. As such the novel is clearly based on intensive research. Tatamiya researched the life of Hashimoto and this included a study of all his oral and written output. Deguchi's argument about Hashimoto's arrest might be true of Matsumoto Seicho, but it is not true of either Nakano or Tatamiya, both of whom met Hashimoto later. Hashimoto was kept under arrest for just 20 days after the October Incident (in lavish circumstances, according to Bergamini) and all three authors referred to above would have had the opportunity to contact him after his release, including Deguchi Kyotaro.
王仁三郎は六尺豊かな、となっているが、実際には五尺二寸八分(約一六○センチ)しかなかったし、第一、軍部のクーデターに参加する気などない。
Onisaburo wa rokushaku yutakana, to natte iru ga, jissai ni wa goshaku ni sun hachi bu (yaku ichi roku maru senchi), dai ichi, gunbu no kuudetaa ni sanka suru ki nado nai.

Onisaburo is depicted as being well over six feet, but in fact he was only about five feet two inches tall, but the most important point is that he did not take part in any military coup d'état.

Deguchi Kyotaro then considers the statements made by Nakano Masao in his edition of Hashimoto Kingoro's notes (discussed above).
『橋本大佐の手記』(中野雅夫筆)にも、王仁三郎が四十万の信徒をひきいて蹶起し、革命に参加しかねまじきようすだったように書かれてあるが、これ もおかしい。「橋本日誌」に、「また、大本教出口王仁三郎はとくに予に面会を求め、有事のさいには東京に次で全国の信者を動員すべく、予の身辺護衛として 植芝剣士を捧げたり」とあるところから、いろいろとりざたされているのであろう。植芝盛平翁が王仁三郎を師と仰いていたことは事実だが、かといって橋本に 捧げられたりするわけがない。信徒の動員といい、剣士の献上といい、どうもこの話は、五尺の背丈が六尺豊かなになっているように、ふたしかである。
"Hashimoto Kingoro Taisa no Shuki" (Nakano Masao hitsu) ni mo, Onisaburo ga yonjuu man no shinto wo hiki ite kekki shi, kakumei ni sanka shi ka ne majiki yousu datta you ni kakarete aru ga, kore wa okashii. ‘Hashimoto nisshi ni, "Mata, Omoto kyo Deguchi Onisaburo wa tokuni yo ni menkai wo motome, yuji no sai ni wa Tokyo ni tsugi ni zenkoku no shinja wo douin subeku, yo no shinpen goei toshite Ueshiba Morihei kenshi wo sasagetari" to aru tokoro kara, iroiro torizata sarete iru no de aru. Ueshiba Morihei O ga Onisaburo wo shi to aoite ita koto wa jujitsu da ga, ka to itte Hashimoto ni sasageraretari suru wake ga nai. Shinto no douin to ii, kenshi no kenjo to ii, doumo kono hanashi wa, goshaku no setake ga rokushaku yutakani natte iru youni, futashika de aru.

In addition, in the Notes of Lt Col Kingoro Hashimoto (by Masao Nakano) it is written that Onisaburo would lead a rising of 400,000 believers, as if there was a possibility that he would take part in the revolt, but this is strange. In the Hashimoto Diary there is the place where it is written that, ‘In addition, Onisaburo Deguchi of the Omoto religion particularly sought an interview with me and offered to mobilize believers from Tokyo and the whole country if the need arose and offered [the services of] swordsman Ueshiba Morihei for my own personal protection.' However, this is speculative gossip. It is true that Mr Morihei Ueshiba looked up to Onisaburo as his teacher, but the talk of mobilizing believers, the talk of offering [the services of] a swordsman—this talk is like [the talk of] barely five feet becoming well over six feet: it is grossly inaccurate.
Deguchi mentions the Hashimoto nisshi, but it is not clear to which material he is referring. However, Deguchi Kyotaro admits that there was indeed a meeting between Deguchi Onisaburo and Hashimoto Kingoro and that it occurred at Fujita Isamu's house.
けれど、王仁三郎と橋本の間に交友関係あったことは事実で、鶴殿ちか子の娘は藤田男爵家にかしてから、二人が藤田邸で会ったとしてもふしぎではな い。こんなことから、王仁三郎が「十月事件」などに一役かっているような臆測が生まれたものと思います。(出口京太郎, 『巨人出口王仁三郎』, 1967, 講談社, pp. 138-139: for those who have the second edition, the extracts are on pp. 148-149.)
Keredo, Onisaburo to Hashimoto no aida ni kouyuu kankei atta koto wa jijitsu de, Tsurudono Chikako no musume wa Fujita danshakuka ni ka shite kara, futari ga Fujita kei de atta toshite mo fushigi dewa nai. Konna koto kara, Onisaburo ga ‘Juugatsu jiken' nado ni hitoyaku katte iru youna okusoku ga umareta mono to omoimasu.

However, it is true that there was a friendly relationship between Onisaburo and Hashimoto. Because it seems that the daughter of Tsurudono Chikako was a member of Baron Fujita's family, the two had a meeting at the Fujita residence: there is nothing mysterious about this. From this event, I think the speculation arose that Onisaburo played a role in the ‘October Incident'.
(Unfortunately, this part of Kyotaro's biography is not included in the English translation published by Aiki News. Nadolski's reference to the Japanese original is correct (pp. 138-139) and the section he has in mind is entitled "Kuudetaa no Kuromaku?" 「クーデターの黒幕?」. Even the second edition of the Japanese original has been slightly modified, but both editions contain this section on coups d'état. However, the entire section is simply missing from the English translation.)

There is much that is unclear about Deguchi Kyotaro's discussion. He admits that a meeting took place between Deguchi Onisaburo and Hashimoto Kingoro (a point on which Nakano Masao is quite reticent), but he does not state when the meeting took place and reveals only what was not talked about; he states nothing about what was talked about. Given the details—and the alleged exaggeration—of Hashimoto's reminiscences, a more detailed explanation might have been preferable to a simple denial. As for Deguchi Onisaburo's association with right-wing ultra-nationalist groups, Kyotaro simply denies the connection. He mentions the association of Deguchi with Uchida Ryohei and Toyama Mitsuru, and also the interview with Kita Ikki, but, without giving any explanation, argues that the critics have the wrong impression of Deguchi. Both the denials and the lack of explanation are unconvincing.

However, one thing that Kyotaro does not deny is Hashimoto's statement that the meeting was sought by Deguchi and not by Hashimoto. Nor does Kyotaro deny that Morihei Ueshiba was present at that meeting. The issues are whether the matter of support for the October Incident was discussed at the meeting and whether Ueshiba offered the services of himself and his deshi as a potential bodyguard.

In this connection there is one more piece of evidence, to be found in Matsumoto Seicho's discussion (on pp. 102-104 of "Sakurakai no Yabo"). Matsumoto does not mention Morihei Ueshiba's presence at the meeting held at Fujita Isamu's house between Hashimoto and Deguchi Onisaburo. However, he does refer to Ueshiba's role as a bodyguard. The following quotation is from the beginning of Section 9. I have transcribed the Japanese text into Roman script and added a summary for each paragraph.
「陸地測量部の二階から、幅一間くらいで長さが二階から地上にとどくくうらいの幟のような幕を垂らし、それに「錦旗革命本部」と書いてはどうかと一同にはかると、賛成する 者が多く、一決した。
Rikuchi sokuryou bu no nikai kara, haba ikken kurai de nagasa ga nikai kara chijo ni todoku kurai no nobori no youna maki wo tarashi, sore ni ‘Nishiki hata kakumei honbu' to kaite wa douka to ichidou ni hakaru to, sansei suru mono ga ooku, ikketsu shita.
The rebels decided to hang a large banner from the second floor of the Land Survey Department with the legend: ‘Imperial Standard Revolution Headquarters.'
さて、その旗を縫う作業だが、これは極秘裡にやらなくてはならない。それをだれに縫わせるかということは問題になったが、このとき橋本は、自分の親 友で内田絹子という女性がいる、この女はちょうど幕末の女志士野村望東尼然たる然たる女丈夫であるから、この人に縫ってもらおうといった。これも一同が諒 承した。
Sate, sono hata wo nuu sagyou daga, kore wa gokuhiri ni yaranakute wa naranai. Sore wo dare ni nuwaseru ka to iu koto wa mondai ni natta ga, kono toki Hashimoto wa, jibun no shinyuu de Uchida Kinuko to iu josei ga iru, kono onna wa choudo bakumatsu no onna shishi Nomura Motoni zen taru jojoufu de aru kara, kono hito ni nutte moraou to itta. Kore mo ichidou ryoushou shita.
Since the matter of the banner had to be secret, the question arose as to who should make it. Hashimoto had a friend who could make the banner. Her name was Uchida Kinuko and she possessed the courage of Nomura Motoni, of bakumatsu fame. This was accepted.
次は、その旗に「錦旗革命本部」という字を書く問題である。最初の「錦」という字は橋本が書くことに別に異議はなかったが、それ以下の文字について は、おれに書かせろ、という出す者が多くて困った。籤引きにしてはどうかという議もでたが、それは不合理だと反対する者があり、なかなか決しない。結局、 次の「旗」という字は長勇が書くことになり、それ以下の文字は某大尉、某中尉というように同志の中から一字ずつ書くことまとまった。
Tsugi wa, sono hata ni ‘Nishiki hata kakumei honbu' to iu ji wo kaku mondai de aru. Saisho no ‘Nishiki' to iu ji wa Hashimoto ga kaku koto ni betsu ni igi wa nakatta ga, sore ika no moji ni tsuite wa, ore ni kakasero to iu dasu mono ga ooku te komatta. Kujibiki ni shite wa douka to iu gi mo deta ga, sore wa fugouri dato hantai suru mono ga ari, nakanaka kesshinai. Kekkyoku, tsugi no ‘hata' to iu ji wa Chou Isamu ga kaku koto ni nari, sore ika no moji wa boutaii, bouchuui to iu youni doushi no naka kara ichiji zutsu kaku koto ni matomatta.
Next the question arose as to who should write the characters on the banner. There was no objection to Hashimoto writing ‘Nishiki', but the writing of the characters below caused a major problem. There was much opposition to holding a lottery, so this was not adopted. Finally, It was decided that Isamu Cho would write ‘hata' and that some captain and some lieutenant would write the other characters.
なかでも長勇が、陸地測量部の前にその旗を垂らして、合気道の植芝道場(道場主は植芝盛平。植芝は出口王仁三郎に心根し、出口の命令で橋本の身辺警 戒にあたろうとしたことである。)の猛者七、八人をボディ・ガードとして、血刀提げた青年将校が多数本部の前に集まれば、赤穂義士の討入りのようになる と、うれしがっていた。
Nakademo, Chou Isamu ga, rikuchi sokuryou bu no mae ni sono hata wo tarashite, aikidou no Ueshiba doujou (doujou shu wa Ueshiba Morihei. Ueshiba wa Deguchi Onisaburo ni kokorone shi, Deguchi no meirei de Hashimoto no shinpen keikai ni atarou toshita koto de aru.) no mosa nana, hachi nin wo bodhigardo toshite, chigatana sageta seinen shouko ga tasuu honbu no mae ni atsumareba, choudo Akou gishi no uri-iri no youni naru to, ureshigatte ita.
Isamu Cho was gratified at the prospect of many officers gathered with swords drawn in front of the Headquarters, which would be like the stand of the 47 Ako officials, with the banner hung from the building and with seven or eight stalwarts from the Ueshiba aikido dojo providing a bodyguard (Ueshiba was close to Onisaburo Deguchi and had been requested to protect Hashimoto).

COMMENT: The discussions about the banner and the writing on it go into so much anguished detail, that it is difficult to believe that all this was fabricated by Hashimoto. In any case, Matsumoto recounts the final section, about the matter of Ueshiba and his students as a bodyguard for Hashimoto, through the eyes of Isamu Cho. Cho was another major player in the Sakurakai and seems to have been more extreme than Hashimoto. The matter of Ueshiba being commanded by Deguchi to be Hashimoto's bodyguard is put in parentheses and separated from the matter of his Kobukan students. Cho compares the actions of these student bodyguards and the sword-wielding officers to the attack of the 47 samurai of Ako (the 47 Ronin). Of course, nothing of the kind actually happened and it might be that Ueshiba knew all along that nothing would happen, having quietly been tipped off by someone like his friend Okawa Shumei. (I discuss the matter of Okawa Shumei below.)

Back to Nadolski
After the reference to Princess Tsurudono Chikako in his thesis, Nadolski then argues that there is little reason to doubt Hashimoto's statement about Deguchi seeking a meeting with him, since by the time he wrote his memoirs, in 1936, the second suppression had already occurred and he would have no reason to lie or alter his position. In any case, he believes that Deguchi's contact with Tatekawa and the sympathetic attention given in Omoto press to the position of the radicals shows the likelihood of Deguchi's involvement. Nadolski makes two more points in support of his claim that Omoto was very closely intertwined with ultra-nationalist movements.

The first point was the assistance that Omoto provided to Uchida Ryohei and Toyama Mitsuru in spreading their own message. Uchida was invited to speak at the opening of a new branch in Tokyo and the Jinrui Aizen Shimbun published his speech in full. Uchida and Toyama participated in Omoto events and Omoto supported the Dai Nippon Seisanto (Great Japan Production Party), Uchida's rightist workers' party. This close association continued right up until the second suppression, when Deguchi was arrested—and was suddenly no longer in favor with Uchida or Toyama.

Nadolski's second point is that Omoto provided the young radicals with inspiration for the tasks they undertook. Consequently, when asked what kind of literature they would prefer to read, the radicals who murdered Prime Minister Inukai in the ‘May 15 Incident' of 1932 replied that they would like to study Omoto newspapers and magazines. These radicals were also inspired by Inoue Nissho, a priest of the Nichiren sect, who had provided the Ketsu-mei-dan (Blood Brotherhood) with its ideology. Inoue preached a fiery agricultural fundamentalism, which would rid Japan of all its accumulated evils and return to its pure agricultural foundations.

As we shall see from a later discussion, the ice on which Nadolski skates here is not particularly thick. The two points made by Nadolski would certainly explain why Omoto was regarded by the police as a potentially terrorist organization and was eventually suppressed. The problem, however, is the step from being closely intertwined with ultra-nationalist movements to being actively involved in planning, executing, or actively supporting terrorist activities like assassinations.

Nakano Masao and Historical Fiction
For his doctoral thesis, Nadolski followed an established pattern and examined primary and then secondary sources. He appears not to have used Deguchi Onisaburo's own writings very much, but certainly made use of the massive 70-year history of Omoto (published in-house) and consulted many Omoto newspapers, along with secondary sources on the history of Japan during the period from 1920 till 1940. Nadolski also used material written or edited by Nakano Masao.

Nakano Masao was a journalist, born in 1908, who had spent time in prison for being an anti-war protester. He became a friend of Fujita Isamu from around 1950, after quitting his job and devoting his energies to the study of revolutionary movements. To quote the biography on the final page of Sannin no Houkasha,
藤田勇氏とは新聞統合反対運動中、日刊工業が軍部との接衝を有利にするため藤田氏を取締役会長に迎えていらいに藤田氏の信頼を得、とくに満州事変に ついて双方異なる立場にあった奇縁を感じながら、昭和三十年に日ソ国交回復について藤田氏が訪ソを計画中、六月二十日死去するまで親交があった。 (Nakano, op.cit., p. 186.)
This puts the author's introductory note (quoted earlier) in a clearer perspective and also explains why Nakano decided to use Fujita Isamu as the main focus of his novel. He does not give much indication of Fujita's leftist leanings, but these were duly recorded by the indefatigable David Bergamini.

In addition to the novel, Sannin no Houkasha, Nakano wrote a number of non-fiction works. These include a series of studies on Showa history entitled, Shouwa-shi no Genten [昭和史の原点], which appeared between 1972 and 1975. All deal with the various ‘incidents' mentioned or discussed in this column and the second volume, published in 1973, deals specifically with the Manchurian Incident and the October Incident. Although his novel Sannin no Houkasha never commanded the influence enjoyed by Shiba Ryotaro, Nakano used basically the same methods. There was very careful research into original sources, which in Nakano's case included discussions with the principal players or their immediate relatives and descendants. Thus, the standards of accuracy approached that of the professional historian and yet, the material was presented as fiction and not straight history.

I have discussed the case of Shiba Ryotaro above and also in a previous column. 『坂の上の雲』 [Saka no ue no kumo: Clouds above the Slope], Shiba's novel of the Russo-Japanese War, is still considered to be the dominating influence in Japanese perceptions of that war, even though the Russo-Japanese War, being a ‘world war', was the first war fought by the Japanese to receive major international scrutiny and thus also to receive extensive documentation. Accordingly, histories of the war can go into great detail about what actually happened, but Shiba's historical fiction is still the popular standard. As I suggested in the earlier column and as Naoko Shimazu suggests in her Japanese Society at War, Shiba's depiction of the ‘bright' periods of Japanese history appealed to ‘postwar' Japanese who had lived through the war years. Shimazu does, however, point to a problem that affects Nakano and the history of aikido, also.
"Shiba's work remains anathema to academic historians because he is a historical fiction writer whom the public respect as a historian. Hence, Shiba's work poses the problem of the blurring of the boundary between history and historical fiction. He once expressed concern about the identity of this particular work [Clouds above the Slope]: ‘Whether or not this work is a fiction is really questionable. For one thing, it is nearly one hundred percent constrained by facts, and for another, the writer of this work—that is myself—seems to have chosen a topic which cannot be a fiction.' If historical fiction becomes the vehicle for disseminating history, then it is obviously problematic."
Shiba's logic needs to be seen clearly here. A writer of fiction can choose a topic that is not fictional, in the sense that it really took place, and thoroughly research the topic, probably—though this is not stated—with the same rigor that a professional historian would expect. The writer can then produce a work that is regarded as fictional, because it written like a novel, but which rests on as solid a factual base as straight history. What, then, is the difference between such a well-researched novel and ‘straight' history?

Shimazu then points to what she thinks is a major issue, which also directly affects aikido. The issue is not so much whether history should be presented like a novel, as whether there should be a ‘national consensus' on an ‘acceptable version of national history'.
"The absence of a national consensus on an acceptable version of national history gives more power to readily available alternative narratives. For the majority of Japanese readers from the 1970s onwards, Shiba was the only writer who offered a credible, entertaining narrative of a war that occurred in the distant past…"
There is no such consensus in the case of Japan, but this is a situation for which academic historians are only partly to blame. Shimazu does not actually state that there should be a national consensus, but one cannot help thinking that if there were ‘a national consensus on an acceptable version of national history' in the case of Japan, there would be no place for historical novelists like Shiba Ryotaro, and this would be quite acceptable to an academic historian like Shimazu.
"Even before his death Shiba attained a national accolade as the ‘nation's writer' (kokumin sakka: 国民作家), His optimistic take on Meiji Japan gave a sense of hope to the war-weary postwar generation and his work is often cited as ‘inspirational' and ‘uplifting'. In fact, his posthumous eulogy most often emphasized the ‘feel-good' factor that his work gave to the Japanese people. Therefore his narrative had a cathartic quality, and allowed the postwar generation to be proud of its modern history, or at least a part of it." (Shimazu, op.cit., pp. 278-279.)
Aikido was created and developed in the critical period between 1930 and 1970. Morihei Ueshiba fought in the Russo-Japanese War, so he is part of what can be considered an ‘aikido historical narrative' that was contemporaneous with the period in which Shiba's work became an established "Japanese historical narrative". Kisshomaru Ueshiba's "uplifting" biography also had a similar "cathartic quality", that allowed the "postwar aikido generation" to be "proud of its history, or at least a part of it."

In this sense Nakano and Shiba can be seen as two sides of a very similar coin. Both saw the 1930s and 1940s as a very ‘dark' period for Japan. Shiba generally refused to touch this period, but Nakano was more anxious to penetrate the darkness and lay it bare. Shimazu's last comments well explain why Shiba is still considered the ‘nation's writer', but Nakano is read hardly at all.

The Role of Okawa Shumei
Lurking throughout Nakano's novel, Hashimoto's notes and discourses is the figure of Okawa Shumei, who might be considered as Iago in relation to a whole host of 1930 Othellos. Okawa really deserves a whole column to himself. He presents something of an enigma and scholarly opinion is divided about his bona fides. On the one hand, David Bergamini is quite forthright about Okawa's ulterior motives and paints a picture of villainy unmitigated by any considerations of ideology (apart from Okawa's commitment to ‘strike south', as a way of potentially safeguarding supplies of raw materials from Asia, rather than to ‘strike north', in order to curb Russian interests in Asia). On the other hand, Okawa's Japanese biographers paint a more nuanced picture, in which the ideology has center place. So Matsumoto Kenichi, for example, spends much of his intellectual biography of Okawa agonizing over the question whether he was a leftist or rightist. Bergamini's picture is quite attractive and he provides a plausible framework within which Okawa's multifarious activities can be understood, but this needs the support of more evidence than he provides.

There is some uncertainty concerning Okawa Shumei's relationship with Morihei Ueshiba. Though they were lifelong friends, it is not clear when they first met. In this connection, it is important to be aware of some dates.

In 1919 Okawa began to work for a department of the South Manchurian Railway called the Toa Keizai Chosakyoku [東亜経済調査局: East Asiatic Economic Investigation Bureau]. He became head of this organization in 1929. In 1935 Okawa was sentenced to various terms of imprisonment for his part in the Incidents discussed earlier in this column, but was released in October 1937. In April 1938 Okawa returned to the Toa Keizai Chosakyoku and also accepted a post at Hosei University.

In his biography, Kisshomaru Ueshiba mentions that Morihei Ueshiba was teaching at the Toa Keizai Chosakyoku and then states that Nobumoto (a.k.a. Shigeo) Tanahashi introduced Ueshiba to Okawa. The time is not stated, but Kisshomaru is discussing the "intensification of the war". The unstated assumption is that Ueshiba and Okawa became friends around this time. In an article in Aikido Today Magazine, Tanahashi is stated to have begun intensive training with Ueshiba from 1934 onwards and at some point discussed ending the war with Ueshiba. This would have been around 1938. Okawa was involved with these ‘peace' negotiations, which could not have taken place until after his release from prison.

On the other hand, Ikkusai Iwata mentions in his interview that Okawa Shumei was one of the members of the Sakurakai, who met at the Kobukan Dojo in 1931. He was one of the "people who wanted to do good for Japan" who came to Morihei Ueshiba's dojo. Given the stringent conditions stated by Iwata for entry to the dojo, the reader must judge whether it is likely that Okawa would have attended such meetings without Morihei Ueshiba's knowledge.

Finally, it has to be stated that Kisshomaru Ueshiba is sometimes mistaken about dates. A glaring mistake involves one Akiyama Saneyuki, who is one of the heroes of Shiba Ryotaro's historical novel Saka no ue no Kumo, mentioned above. Kisshomaru states that Akiyama became a student of Morihei Ueshiba at the Ueshiba Dojo in Ayabe in 1921.

"Other important students included Masayasu Asano and Saneyuki Akiyama, who were rear admirals in the Japanese Imperial Navy and who would be of great assistance to O Sensei when he moved to Tokyo (both men were later promoted to the rank of vice admiral). They became close to O Sensei during these days in Ayabe." (Kisshomaru Ueshiba, A Life in Aikido, pp. 134-135.)

Akiyama Saneyuki was promoted to vice admiral in 1917, after his retirement from the navy on health grounds. It is true that he became interested in religion as he grew older and this interest also included Omoto. However, Akiyama died on February 4, 1918, at the age of 48. So he could not possibly have trained in the Ueshiba Dojo, which was established in 1920, or assisted Morihei Ueshiba after the latter's move to Tokyo in 1925.


Deguchi the Peacemaker?
The most recent study of Deguchi Onisaburo and Omoto-kyo in English argues that Deguchi was really a pacifist and has been misunderstood by antagonistic historians like David Bergamini. In The Prophet Motive, Nancy Stalker discusses the matter of Deguchi's supposed pacifist leanings and her arguments must be considered.

Stalker approaches Deguchi's pacifism by arguing that Deguchi and Omoto were opposed to the Russo-Japanese War of 1904-1905. Deguchi's opposition was recorded in his book Michi no Shiori (from which the aphorisms quoted above were taken). After the First Suppression, he moderated his tone considerably and became more patriotic, but did not, according to Stalker, modify his anti-war stance. As she puts it,
"After the 1921 suppression, he attempted to avoid controversy and state censure. Yet throughout his career, he steadfastly denied the ability of the modern state to foster peace and universal love. As the state was unwilling to work towards world peace, he believed that it was incumbent upon religious organizations to join hands and work towards universal brotherhood." (Nancy Stalker, Prophet Motive: Deguchi Onisaburo, Oomoto, and the Rise of New Religions in Imperial Japan, 2008, p. 147.)
No evidence is given for this assertion and the problem for Stalker is to equate what she considers Deguchi's continuing anti-war stance with his clear support of ultra-nationalist groups in the 1930s. (I have qualified Deguchi's stance in this way because a discerning reader should have no difficulty in seeing that having a ‘continuous anti-war stance', because of the denial of ‘the ability of the modern state to foster peace and universal love', is not at all inconsistent with passive, or even active, support for the abolition of such a state by possibly violent means. The wartime Kokutai no Hongi tract expressed Japan's incursions into Asia in much the same ‘peace-loving' terms. I discuss this issue further, below.)

Stalker accepts the fact of this support. She quotes a scholar named Hirose Kojiro, to the effect that osei fukko [王政復古], the restoration of imperial rule espoused by the advocates of a Showa Restoration, was quite different from shinsei fukko [神政復古] , the restoration of divine rule called for by Deguchi and Omoto. But then she overlooks that fact that Omoto did not make any contemporary protest about the former: the differences were merely ‘differences of interpretation', which took second place to Deguchi's entrepreneurial aims.
"Despite these differences of interpretation, Onisaburo recognized that burgeoning patriotism and widespread popular support for Japan's initiatives in Manchuria could further Omoto's mission, and like most savvy entrepreneurs, he quickly committed resources to a hot opportunity. Dedicating enormous amounts of time and money to a new project that both supported his religious vision and his desire for organizational growth, he again demonstrated key measures of charismatic entrepreneurship." (Stalker, op.cit., p. 173.)
In the sixth chapter of her book, Stalker gives a clear and cogent picture of Omoto's support for ultra-nationalist groups. Building on the success of the Jinrui Aizenkai [人類愛善会Universal Love and Brotherhood Association], which was created in 1925 and was hugely successful, Deguchi created another paramilitary-style group. This was called the Shouwa Shinseikai [昭和神聖会, translated by Stalker as ‘Showa Sacred Association'] and the inaugural meeting took place amid great fanfare in 1934 at the Kudan Army Hall in Tokyo. Stalker provides an explanation of Onisaburo Deguchi's motives in forming such an association.
"The Shinseikai was avowedly neither religious nor political, though its ultimate objective, to build an ideal society where there would be no need for war, seemed a bit of both." (Stalker, op.cit., 178.)
There are some aspects of this aim that need further discussion, but Stalker notes that,
"These vague, lofty proclamations [she is referring to the six founding principles] seemed to differ very little from the aims of the [Omoto] religious organization, though their valence would depend on the listener's [i.e., at the inaugural meeting] interpretation of the meaning of koudou[皇道: Imperial Way]. The prevalence of Oomoto beliefs in the founding principles indicate that the organization had a religio-political orientation at odds with state boundaries between religion and politics…" (Stalker, ibid.)
The new organization gained strength during the following year and Stalker notes that the group claimed eight million supporters. However,
"By September 1934, just two months after the Shinseikai was launched, the Home Ministry identified it as one of the fourteen most powerful groups among four hundred active right-wing associations in the country. The parent organization, Oomoto, provided funds, organizational skills and publication support." (Stalker, op.cit., p. 182.)
This partly specified the reason why the authorities decided to suppress the parent religious organization.
"From a legal and political standpoint, a heterodox religion could be more easily suppressed than a patriotic association supported by many political and military elites." (Stalker, ibid.)
Stalker gives a clear explanation of Omoto's association with right-wing ultra-nationalist movements and underlines this fact as the main reason for the religion's suppression in 1935. However, the aims of Omoto as a peace-loving, anti-war organization, dedicated to the pursuit of non-violence, tend to recede into the background in her account. Now both Deguchi Kyotaro and Kisshomaru Ueshiba argue in their respective biographies that the state suppression of Omoto was an oppressive, unethical act and that Deguchi (and also Ueshiba Morihei, creating his ‘sincere techniques' ‘enthusiastically' in the Kobukan Dojo, to use Iwata Ikkusai's terms) acted for the good of Japan. In other words, their intentions were pure and good and therefore laudable—and seemingly not open to criticism. This assumption seems to underlie Stalker's discussion and it would also be open to Deguchi Kyotaro to use the same argument in defence of Deguchi's (and Ueshiba's) presence at a meeting with Hashimoto Kingoro at Fujita Isamu's residence in 1931. One could use a ‘strong' defence or a ‘weak' defence. The ‘strong' defence would argue that they approved of Hashimoto's aims for a Showa restoration in Japan, but disapproved entirely of the methods used by the officers. The ‘weak' defence would be less disapproving and argue that the intentions of the officers were pure—and deserved the active support given by Omoto, even though they led to results that were undesirable, and therefore not especially condoned by the supporters. To see the issues in play here, we need some examples. Two come to hand, both of impeccable pedigree.

(Essential Digression
Take-Haya-Susa-no-o and Morihei Ueshiba on Intention and Action
In Column 8, I summarized the myths of the Kojiki concerning the deity Take Haya Susa no o and Ama terasu o mikami and we need to revisit these. The first example involves the taking of an ‘oath', in order to test the purity of one's intentions.

Ukehi
After Susa-no-o was expelled from ‘the land' by his father Izanagi no mikoto, he ascended to Takama no hara to ‘take leave of' Ama terasu. The goddess, hearing the loud noise of his stormy climb up to heaven, put on armor and prepared for battle. When Susa no o approached, she asked him why he had come and he replied that he had come to take leave before his departure. She then asked [in the translation of Donald Philippi],
"If that is so, how am I to know that your intentions are pure and bright?"
Susa no o's answer was unusual.
"Let us swear oaths and bear children."
The two deities then exchanged some very important objects, namely, Susa no o's sword and the magatama beads that Ama terasu carried in her hair and on her arms. They chewed the various objects into pieces, spat out the pieces and created various deities from the ‘misty spray' of spittle. From Susa-no-o's ‘misty spray' came three female deities and from Ama terasu's came five male deities, headed by Morihei Ueshiba's favorite: Masa katsu a katsu kachi haya bi ame no oshi o mimi no mikoto. Susa-no-o argued that his children proved that his intentions were pure and bright and that it was thereby obvious that he had won the encounter. He then disgraced himself in a ‘victory rage' and, once again, was expelled, this time with a ‘divine expulsion.'

The point of note here is the ceremony of oath taking and its consequences. In the modified kanbun text of the Kojiki there is no Chinese character and the term is rendered in kana as うけひ [u-ke-hi]. However, in the text of the Nihon Shoki, the word u-ke-hi is written with the Chinese characters 誓約, also read as せいやく [sei-yaku], which in modern Japanese is a solemn oath. Much scholarly ink has been spilt over the precise meaning of the term and Philippi gives one such interpretation.
"Ukehi, translated by the word ‘oath,' is, in principle, a ceremony for learning the divine will and is thus like divination (uranai). Divination, however, is a technique for discovering some unknown, whereas ukehi is a rite in which one ‘swears' in the divine presence that one is just and asks for a divine judgement to that effect. It is performed before a deity or a large group of people, and one is judged correct if the expected sign results." (Philippi, Kojiki, p. 75.)
Thus, ukehi is a kind of solemn norito ceremony and embodies all the assumptions of kotodama theory. I have used Philippi's interpretation because it is also the one favored by Mishima Yukio in his novel Runaway Horses. Though the novel is based on the Shinpuren Rebellion of 1876, it well conveys the atmosphere of fanaticism of the 1930s. In Chapter Nine, there is an account of a ceremony of ukehi, which was held at a shrine to determine whether a rebellious course of action was favored by the deities. The origin of the rite is traced explicitly to the episode in the Kojiki summarized above, but the Chinese characters used by Mishima for ukehi are different [宇気比]. In Mishima's novel this earlier account of the ceremony is used by different, younger rebels, who were planning to assassinate various government and business figures in December 1932. The model for these assassinations is clearly the ‘League of Blood Incident' of 1932. The point is that if the ceremony of ukehi is held and the proposed course of action is judged favorable, then no further justification is required; the action can go ahead because the intentions have been judged ‘pure and bright' by the divine authority.

If we relate this example to the issue of Omoto and the support for assassinations, it works for both sides. Since Deguchi regarded himself as a shaman, with a direct route to the Lord of Heaven, his actions and the actions of his supporters were clearly supported by divine authority. His intentions, consequently, were to be judged to be ‘pure and bright'. Of course, the same reasoning could be used—and actually was used—by the officers planning to remove the corrupt government of Japan and replace it by something explicitly divine, since the new state would actually display the body of Amaterasu's imperial descendant in all its glory. Their intentions, also, were obviously ‘pure and bright'.

The Killing of O getsu hime
The second example also involves the Kojiki and Susa no o. After being expelled for the second time, Susa no o meets O getsu hime and asks for food. She produces various food items from the orifices of her body and offers them to him, but Susa no o considers that she has polluted the food before offering it to him and kills the goddess. There are various versions of the myth in the Nihon Shoki, but the one quoted above was the one favored by Morihei Ueshiba, for in one of his discourses he mentions the story. After noting the creation of various deities from the misogi rituals of Izanagi no mikoto, he specifically mentions the last three deities: "Amaterasu mi kami [sun goddess], Tsukiyomi no o kami [moon god], and Susano o no kami [brave god]."
"These three gods brought the world to completion and established its grand design. The manner in which the world was made and how it operates is a textbook that guides us. That is the spirit we must follow single-mindedly in this world in all our endeavors. That spirit is symbolized by Susano-o. He did slay Ogetsuhime [food ogress], but that was an example of a good god slaying an evil god to make the world better." (Morihei Ueshiba, The Secret Teachings of Aikido, p. 72.)
The original Japanese text is in Aiki Shinzui and the crucial part follows in bold type.
この三貴神が生まれて、ますますこの世の中の組織が完全になるよう営まれてくるわけである。それでこの完全に営まれつつあるところの精神を、われわ れの教訓にかかげること。ことに今日のような世に、この精神をもととして、誠を尽くすことに専念しなければいけない。これは数々のことにおいて言われてい る。これにはちゃんと須佐之男大御神。
須佐之男大御神は大宜都比売を殺されたわけであるが、これにはちゃんとしたわけである。大宜都比売を殺された理由は神が神を殺すというのは、この世の中に対する教訓であり 、それは誠一つに質素を旨とせよということである。
(植芝盛平, 『合気神髄』, p. 92.)

A Romaji transcription of the text in bold type, concerned specifically with Susa no o slaying O getsu hime, follows.
Su sa no o (no) oo kami wa Oo ge tsu hi me wo korosareta wake de aru ga, kore ni wa chanto shita wake de aru. Oo ge tsu hi me wo korosareta riyu wa kami ga kami wo korosu to iu no wa, kono yo no naka ni taisuru kyoukun de ari, sore wa makoto hitotsu ni shisso wo mune to seyo to iu koto de aru.
The English translation above, made by John Stevens, is an interpretation of the text. However, the text does not specifically state that a good god slays an evil god to make the world better, though this is what appears to have happened in the Kojiki. The slaying of one god by another is given by Morihei Ueshiba as an example of the makoto spirit with which we must act single-mindedly in this world, in all our endeavors.

The focus of the second example depends somewhat on the translation/interpretation preferred. If one follows John Stevens, Morihei Ueshiba gave the example of a good god slaying a bad god to make the world better—which is exactly the argument used by officers like Hashimoto Kingoro to justify the slaying of evil politicians and businessmen and so make the world better. If the text is interpreted more literally, Morihei Ueshiba gave the example of a deity slaying another deity as a prime example of the sincerity (makoto) that should govern our actions, but, in the manner of someone like Motoori Norinaga (who argued that the deities in the Kojiki followed their own exclusive logic) and without making any explicit judgment on the moral quality of the action. Of course, it is incumbent on everyone to work out what one's mission in the world really is and to act accordingly, but Morihei Ueshiba uses a deity like Susa-no-o—which is a surprising choice, given this deity's amazing exploits recorded in the previous chapter, just before he kills the food goddess—as his prime example of someone who did this and acted accordingly.
End of Essential Digression)

Explaining the general relationship between an action and the intention governing the action—even the supposedly basic task of initially describing the action itself—is notoriously difficult and has occupied the minds of thinkers from Plato and Aristotle onwards. The two examples given above focus on different aspects of this relationship. In the first example, someone plans to perform a certain course of action and holds a ceremony to determine whether the action is approved by the highest authority. If it is so approved, this approval constitutes a guarantee that the intention is pure and the action is therefore acceptable, or even necessary. If the intention is not perceived to be pure, then this is a problem for the perceivers themselves and not for those who have the approved intention.

In the second example, someone performs an action that is judged to be moral because of the consequences that follow from the action and not from the intrinsic quality of the action itself. One could modify the second example in the following way. Someone performs an action with a specific intention, which is considered ‘good and bright', but the action has other, different, consequences, which are perhaps not foreseen. A question can arise about these other consequences: what relevance do they have to the initial action? Again, much scholarly ink has been spilt about this issue, which has been called the Principle of Double Effect. However, I will save further discussion of this issue for a forthcoming column on the moral dimensions of aikido.

Back to the Iwata Interview
As a conclusion to this column, I will make a few other points about the Iwata interview. As I suggested earlier, the AJ translations are usually very reliable and illuminating (a spectacular example being the four-part translations of Takemusu Aiki). However, the points I make here concern the English translation and I wonder whether the same points could be made about the Japanese original, which I have not seen. First, the crucial paragraph is reproduced once more:
In about 1931, Japan inclined toward the policy of obtaining land in foreign countries. Japanese politicians exercised their power only for themselves. I think we can still see this tendency today. But there was a movement to reform Japanese policy at that time. The group called "Sakurakai," which consisted of young military officers, gathered to discuss the reform of Japan. Among the members were Shumei Okawa, Nissho Inoue, and Kozaburo Tachibana.They said that they needed to reform Japan. I don't mean [they were planning] a revolution. Their meeting place was the Ueshiba Dojo. Few people know this. Ueshiba Sensei had the enthusiasm to create sincere techniques and to use them for Japan's sake. So it was a time when people who wanted to do good for Japan came to his dojo.
I have discussed Iwata's disclaimer above, but there are other obscurities in the passage. First Iwata makes the usual ritual reference to the selfishness of contemporary politicians, but the connection with the previous reference of the need to obtain land in foreign countries is not easy to see. The movement to reform Japan at the time seems to be a reference to the projected Showa Restoration, into which Onisaburo Deguchi put much effort. However, this movement was largely associated with the Young Officers and it is not really clear to what extent reform and revolution were as easily distinguished as Iwata suggests, in the minds of those who worked for such a restoration. Secondly, Iwata is mistaken that Okawa, Inoue and Tachibana were members of the Sakurakai. The best accounts of this organization come from Richard Storry's The Double Patriots, which was based on the transcripts of the Tokyo trials, and from Hashimoto's own notes and oral discourse. There were several factions within the organization and not all the factions actually planned assassinations. However, it is clear that Okawa, Inoue and Tachibana were very active ‘fellow travellers' with the Sakurakai and they could well have attended the meetings as interested parties. To judge from Amdur's discussion in Dueling with O Sensei (in which he follows Bergamini), Okawa, especially, was far more of a tactician, quite accustomed to planning strategies—some of which he knew would lead to failure, leading people on and then stepping back just as the strategies began to unravel. Morihei Ueshiba was one of those he manipulated. Thirdly, the reference to the Kobukan Dojo as ‘their meeting place' suggests that it was the regular meeting place, but there is no reference to this anywhere else in the literature I have been able to consult. Nakano's depiction of Fujita Isamu sending off the Omoto youths to Morihei Ueshiba strongly suggests that Ueshiba was well known in Tokyo as an Omoto follower, but there is no outside reference (apart from the Iwata interview) to Ueshiba's dojo being a regular meeting place for anything except bujutsu training.

There is a great deal that we do not know about Morihei Ueshiba—and probably will never know. This ‘great deal' includes much about his training and teaching methods, as well as his political activities. Ueshiba died in 1969 and with the passage of time those whom he knew or directly taught are gradually dwindling in number. Thus interviews of the sort that Stanley Pranin conducted are a very valuable source of information, but the information they give is still limited. In any case it is desirable that such information is corroborated by other, outside, evidence and it is unfortunate that the Iwata interview lacks such supporting evidence. The material cited and discussed in this column offers some external evidence (evidence from outside the world of aikido) about Morihei Ueshiba and his alleged activities in the 1930s. I came across the evidence quite by chance and so it is likely that there is more to be discovered.

Further Reading
The material on which this column is based has been cited extensively in previous columns. One major work, not often read nowadays, contains a critical study of the ‘darker' aspects of the 1930s: David Bergamini, Japan's Imperial Conspiracy, 1971, William Morrow. Bergamini's main target is the Emperor Hirohito, but he takes aim at a large number of others, especially Okawa Shumei. There are two references to Omoto, in which the religion / organization is tied very firmly to the Black Dragon / Amur River Society. Onisaburo Deguchi himself, however, escapes his gaze and his name does not even appear in the index. Herbert Bix has produced an updated version of the central elements of Bergamini's thesis which, also, does not include any consideration or mention of Onisaburo Deguchi and Omoto: Herbert Bix, Hirohito and the Making of Modern Japan, 2000, Harper Collins. Both Bergamini and Bix have been severely criticized for being unduly biased and selective in the evidence they consider. However, in his discussion of the ‘incidents' of the 1930s, Bergamini has used the edition of Hashimoto's notes edited by Nakano Masao. The alleged direct connection of these ‘incidents' to the Showa Emperor, which is the main aim of Bergamini's book, is less easy to discern. More specific background information is given in a detailed study that Bergamini actually used: Richard Storry, The Double Patriots: A Study of Japanese Nationalism, 1957, Houghton Mifflin.
The Ketsumeidan Incident is discussed in some detail by Thomas Havens in his book on agrarian nationalism: Thomas R H Havens, Farm and Nation in Modern Japan: Agrarian Nationalism, 1870 -- 1940, 1974, Princeton U P. It is also examined in the following article: Stephen S Large, "Nationalist Extremism in Early Showa Japan: Inoue Nissho and the ‘Blood-Pledge Corps Incident', 1932, Modern Asian Studies, Volume 35, Issue 3, July 2001, pp. 533 -- 564. The second novel in Yukio Mishima's tetralogy, The Sea of Fertility, [『豊穣の海』 Houjou no umi] gives a good picture of the emotions involved in planning a coup d'état (Mishima focuses on the 1932 incidents) and also of the preoccupation with death, which appears to be a central feature of the planning, and of which Mishima himself came to have firsthand experience: Yukio Mishima, Runaway Horses [『奔馬』 Honba], 1973, Tuttle. The relationship of Zen Buddhism to events such as assassinations is explored in two books by Brian Victoria: Brian Daizen Victoria, Zen War Stories, 2003, Routledge-Curzon, pp. 43-47; Zen At War, 2nd edition, 2006, Rowman and Littlefield.
Full details of the books written or edited by Nakano Masao relevant to this column are 中野雅夫,『三人の放火者』, 昭和31年 (1956), 筑摩書房; 『橋本大佐の手記』, 昭和38 (1963), みすず書房; 『昭和史の原点2:満州事変と十月事件』, 1973, 講談社.
The essay by Matsumoto Seicho, discussed above, is 『「桜会」の野望』and appears in松本清張, 『昭和史発屈 3』, 1964, 2005, 文春文庫, pp. 1-127.
There is a biography of Hashimoto Kingoro in Japanese: 田々宮英太郎, 『橋本欣五郎一代』, 1982, 芙蓉書房出版.
The precise references to works on the Russo-Japanese War are 山田朗, 『世界史の中の日露戦争』, 2011, 吉川弘文館; Naoko Shimazu, Japanese Society at War: Death, Memory and the Russo-Japanese War, 2009, Cambridge U P.
There are two editions of the biography of Onisaburo Deguchi. The first edition was published by Kodansha in 1967: 出口京太郎, 『巨人出口王仁三郎』, 1967, 講談社. This was followed by a revised edition, also published by Kodansha, but in 1975 and with different pagination: 出口京太郎, 『巨人出口王仁三郎』, 1975, 講談社文庫. The English translation I have used for this column was published in 1998. It contains a preface by Deguchi Kyotaro and another preface by the translator, Charles Rowe. In this preface Rowe explains how he first came across the book in French translation and notes the inaccuracies in the original English translation. He then states that he made a fresh translation from the "Japanese original", but does not state which original he used and why he omitted the portion of text discussed in the column: Kyotaro Deguchi, The Great Onisaburo Deguchi, translated by Charles Rowe, 1998, Aiki News.
Ellis Amdur has revised his earlier work Dueling with O Sensei and this includes the essay entitled "Head in the Clouds Feet in the Muck", wherein Ueshiba's association with ‘the wrong sort of people' is discussed: Ellis Amdur, Dueling with O Sensei: Grappling with the Myth of the Warrior Sage, Edgework, 2013. Actually, it was a discussion with Mr Amdur that prompted me to search out the evidence that Nadolski used and examine it further here.
Peter Goldsbury (b. 28 April 1944). Aikido 7th dan Aikikai, Emeritus Professor at Hiroshima University, teaching philosophy and comparative culture. B. in UK. Began aikido as a student and practiced at various dojo. Became a student of Mitsunari Kanai at the New England Aikikai in 1973. After moving back to the UK in 1975, trained in the Ryushinkan Dojo under Minoru Kanetsuka. Also trained with K Chiba on his frequent visits to the UK. Moved to Hiroshima, Japan, in 1980 and continued training with the resident Shihan, Mazakazu Kitahira, 7th dan Also trained regularly with Seigo Yamaguchi, Hiroshi Tada, Sadateru Arikawa and Masatake Fujita, both in Hiroshima and at the Aikikai Hombu. Was elected Chairman of the IAF in 1998. With two German colleagues, opened a small dojo in Higashi-Hiroshima City in 2001. Instructed at Aiki Expo 2002 in Las Vegas, Nevada.
Attached Images
File Type: pdf pgoldsbury_2012_12.pdf (868.3 KB, 32 views)
Old 01-02-2013, 11:12 AM   #2
Demetrio Cereijo
Join Date: Nov 2004
Posts: 1,908
Spain
Offline
Re: Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 9a / 22a

Thanks again, Prof. Goldsbury.

  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

Aikido DVDs and Video Downloads - by George Ledyard Sensei & other great teachers from AikidoDVDS.Com



Comment


Currently Active Users Viewing This Column: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Column Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new columns
You may not post comment
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Column Column Starter Category Comments Last Post
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 6 Peter Goldsbury Columns 35 03-13-2009 06:16 PM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 10 Peter Goldsbury Columns 200 02-04-2009 06:45 AM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 3 Peter Goldsbury Columns 16 05-28-2007 06:24 AM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation 2 Peter Goldsbury Columns 3 04-19-2007 04:53 AM
Transmission, Inheritance, Emulation Peter Goldsbury Columns 7 03-25-2007 02:33 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 12:53 AM.



Column powered by GARS 2.1.5 ©2005-2006

vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2014 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2014 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate