August 17, 2008
Hosei Universityfs students
ZENGAKUREN (General Federation of Japanese Studentsf Autonomous Bodies)
Brothers and sisters, workers and students of US!
We are writing to you on behalf of the fighting students of Hosei University
against neo-liberal offensive of the university authorities.
@War drive and neo-liberal policy have rapidly brought about a transformation
of universities. In recent several years the Hosei University authorities
have deprived students of their right of freedom of expression and violently
suppressed independent activities of students on campus, such as organizing
various student clubs, in cooperation with police. 88 students were unjustly
arrested and 22 of them were indicted in these two years because of their
activities on campus. We are unflinchingly fighting back this outrageous
Now it has become no more possible for the capitalist class to tolerate
academic autonomy and freedom that they used to admit for times. In face
of this situation, we are determined to carry out our struggle to crush
neo-liberal offensive and to get back education in our hands in solidarity
with workers and students round the world.
How Hosei University has changed its character
@Hosei University used to be called edemocratic Hoseif and numerous Marxist
economist professors were lecturing. In days of the struggle against Vietnam
war, Hosei University was one of the strongholds of student movement.
There was a Student Hall as a center of studentsf autonomy, in which more
than one hundred independent studentfs clubs were located, such as music,
arts, scientific activities. The Student Hall was completely under the
control of students and was full of laughter of students and sounds of
musical instrumentsf exercises night and day. Not only Hosei University
students but also students of many other universities in Tokyo often gathered
to the Student Hall of Hosei as a meeting point.
@The year 2000 marked a turning point for Hosei University: under the
name of eUniversity Reformf, a project of redevelopment of the campus
was launched with successive construction of high-rise buildings and abrupt
raising of university fees. In the course of this project, control over
students was gradually strengthened. Notwithstanding, in March 2003 when
the war on Iraq was going to break out, the Student Hall still played
a great role as a bastion of the anti-war struggle with workers, students
and citizens rallying from across Japan. An accidental fire in 2004 gave
the Hosei University authorities a pretext to intervene in independent
studentsf activities and finally ended in dismantling the Student Hall
as a center of studentsf clubs.
The repression on March 14, 2006 and our struggle thereafter
After the demolition of the Student Hall, the University authorities escalated
its repressive measures against students, even trying to prohibit to put
out billboards and to distribute flyers on campus. Studentsf billboards
used to be symbols of animated independent activities of studentfs clubs
to show that students are in charge of campus.
On March 14 when the university authorities openly declared the prohibition
of billboards on campus, we stood up for a protest action. Hosei University
authorities introduced a large number of police including security police
and let them arrest all students present on the spot amounting to 29.
@Our struggle on campus has entered a new stage since the repression of
March 14, 2006. The University authorities resorted to repeated punishment
on disobedient students, including expulsion and suspension. In spite
of this offensive, the students who were punished have been fighting against
the university authorities, entering into campus with a determined statement
that the punishments on them were invalid.
@In April this year the University authorities decided to hire personnel
who are muscular professionals specially trained to assault on students.
They are called eJersey troopf and hang round the campus to find out students
who distribute flyer and to drive them violently out of campus. Now all
studentsf activities on campus needed to be admitted by the university
authorities and they are constantly watched by surveillance cameras installed
on over 60 spots. Without physical confrontation against the violent eJersey
troopf, one canft put out flyers or make a speech on todayfs Hosei University
@On May 29, we carried out, with the help of students from other universities,
a protest demonstration on campus in defiance of severe repressive system
in a decisive attempt to liberate Hosei University. Upset by our action,
the university authorities dared to introduce police on campus. We did
not retreat in face of violent attack of security police and fought out
the confrontation till the end. 38 students were arrested in all (including
ones on the day before) and 15 out of them were indicted.
@On the following day, angry at the news of mass unjust arrests, a large
amount of students and workers gathered in front of Hosei University campus
and one of the students went into a 170-hour hunger strike for protest.
In spite of violent suppression by means of mass arrests, the struggle
on Hosei University campus has been going on.
Struggle in detention (jail)
The total number of the arrested students on Hosei campus amounts to 88
since the start of the struggle on March 14, 2006. At present moment,
20 students are held in Tokyo detention center. Japan pretends to be a
edemocratic statef, but in reality it is a brutal, repressive state. Once
arrested, police can detain him or her for 23 days at most without any
visitors except lawyer. In case of indictment, detention can continue
for more than half year. During investigation, police attempts every means
to have arrested people converted, urging them to quit the emovementf.
We make it our principle to keep complete silence in front of police and
to refuse conversion from the instant of arrest. We are proud to tell
you that all of those arrested 88 students carried out this principle
in their struggle against police investigation, that is, gno word, no
conversionh. Even though significant numbers of major activists are in
detention, Hosei University struggle is being fought courageously as fighting
student movement and is gaining wider popular support. Among others, fighting
lawyers are helping the arrested students in detention in their struggle
against the university authorities, police, prosecutor and court. Thus
the Hosei struggle is threatening the social order imposed by the capitalist
October 17 Day of Hosei Liberation Struggle and November
2 National Workersf Rally
A series of political repressions on the student movement in Hosei University
evidently constitutes an integral part of the neo-liberal offensive of
Japanese imperialism on working class. It goes also parallel with its
reactionary attempts of revising the Japanese constitution (elimination
of the 9 article of prohibiting war) and of unrestricted dispatching Self-Defense
To meet these offensives, we, fighting students of Hosei University and
fighting students of ZENGAKUREN who squarely confronted the brutal repression
on May 28 and 29, carried out a militant demonstration in Shibuya, downtown
Tokyo on June 29 against G8 Summit in Hokkaido (North Japan) together
with angry workers in our earnest hope of building up solidarity with
the fighting workers all over the world. We are now convinced that our
struggle has been steadily driving not only the Hosei University authorities
but also the Fukuda administration into bankruptcy.
On October 17, we, fighting students of Hosei University together with
fighting students of ZENGAKUREN are going to rise up for a decisive struggle
to liberate Hosei campus.
Succeeding this struggle, we are joining November 2 National Workers Rally
sponsored by Doro-Chiba with a great mobilization of fighting students
Letfs fight in solidarity against neo-liberal offensive, our common enemy!
@Now the working people round the world are rising up for strike and food
riot, shouting, gWe must liveh. In US, on May Day, ILWU shut down all
ports on the West Coast to stop the war on Iraq. In response to this action,
Iraqi port workers stood up for one-hour strike. Those are the really
historical great struggles.
@CAMS succeeded to stop several hundred students to be delivered to the
military by driving out military recruiters from school. UTLA waged on
June 6 one-hour strike to protest against the cut of education and social
@Japanese education workers who are fighting against Hinomaru and Kimigayo
headed by sisters NEZU Kimiko and KAWARAI Junko are receiving supporting
statements and resolutions from CAMS, UTLA, CFT and CLF. This is really
@We, fighting students of Hosei University and fighting students of ZENGAKUREN,
pledge to continue struggle in solidarity with the working class of US
and the rest of the world for our common cause.
@We are now organizing signature campaign for petition to get back our
comrades from the jail. We ask you, US workers and students, to help us
in our struggle to win back the arrested and indicted 20 students in detention
by the repressions on May 28 and 29 in Hosei University and other occasions
after that. Please give your support for our petition drive.
@Letfs fight together arm in arm!
@In class solidarity!
KUKINO Kazuya, student of law faculty of Hosei University, arrested and
suspended indefinitely for the struggle on March 14, 2006
ODA Yosuke, president of ZENGAKUREN (General Federation of Japanese Studentsf