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Friday, 26th September 2008
In General Japan News,

Red resurgence: Japanese Communists 'on the rise'

The ranks of the Japanese Communist Party (JCP) have been swelled by young workers disillusioned with government policies, it has been claimed.

Around half a million people were JCP members in 1990, around the time of the fall of the Soviet Union. By 2000, this had dropped by a quarter and the party's share of the vote began to dwindle.

In the past year alone, however, the party has recruited more than 10,000 new members, reports Canberra Times.

Some commentators believe the red resurgence has been fuelled by the return to the bestseller lists of Kanikosen (The Cannery Boar), a 1929 novel by Marxist author Takiji Kobayashi.

Kazuo Shii, Communist Party chairman, commented: "Many struggling young people are tired of the way Japan is heading.

"This year they have become attracted to our party as they see their plight reflected in Kanikosen."

The JCP was founded in 1922, but only won legal status in 1945. It was also highly critical of the Soviet Union's military interventions in Czechoslovakia and Afghanistan.

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