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Unformatted text preview: 1. 1947 Constitution of Japan- Lizzeth Carreon - The capstone of Allied reforms was the new constitution that went into effect on May 3, 1947. - Written by a small group of Americans working under the direction of Charles Kades. - The content of postwar constitution was strongly influenced by a desire to avoid the constitutional dilemmas of the 1930s. Drafters were especially concerned to: o Eliminate the political autonomy of the military. o Eliminate the prewar aristocracy, the aristocratic upper chamber of the legislature, and the Privy Council o Trim the political authority of the emperor o Create a foundation for an elective democracy that vested sovereignty in the people - The Constitution created a ministerial form of elective govt. that preserves the imperial institution as a symbol of the state -> retains the office but strips it of all real power. o emperor is granted essential ritual duties, but the sovereignty rests with the people themselves and they will elect legitimate leader. o prime minister and cabinet ministers = executive branch of govt. aided by national civil service o constitution requires that at least half of all cabinet ministers hold seats in the national legislature -> this eliminates the need for informal prewar bodies (ie. genro and jushin) - men and women at the age of twenty are able to elect representatives to the bicameral legislature, the Diet, consisting of the House of Representatives and the House of Councilors. o both possess almost equal powers, but representatives have slight precedence on budgetary matters - an autonomous judiciary is established -> the Supreme Court is empowered to supervise the system of lower courts and can determine the constitutionality of laws. - It addresses role of military in Article 9, which states: o land, sea, and air forces, and other war potential, will never be maintained and that the right of belligerency of the state will not be recognized. - The constitution addressed social rights: o a minimal level of social welfare is a constitutional guarantee o women are granted explicit equality before the law (ie. inheritance practices, patriarchy in the home, access to education, opportunity in the labor market -> strengthening the legal basis of womens rights) - Under this constitution, the people no longer have to compete against a separate military, a privileged aristocracy, or a privy council, nor do they have to compete with domineering genro Power is now focused on the Diet, thereby granting more prospective influence to political parties and organized interests. 2. US-Japan Security Treaty and the fight over its revision-- Suet-ying, AKA Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security Signed in 1952 along with the Peace Treaty - Established relationship between the US and Japan, whereby the US will assure Japan security in exchange for allowing the US to build military bases in Japan territory o (Military bases was important for countering the expansion of the USSR) o Japan was obliged to pay some of the expenses for these troops...
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