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    Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

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    NBK

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    Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Sat May 17, 2014 5:08 pm

    Shōriki Matsutarō was a number of things:
    policeman
    10dan jūdōka
    newspaper man who built the world's largest paper, the Yomiuri
    Arrested as a Class A war criminal by the Occupation, finally released without being brought to trial after an extended detention.
    baseball prompter who brought Babe Ruth and Moe Berg (a real spy) to Japan
    father of the Japanese nuclear power program
    founder and first President of the Nihon Budokan
    first president of the Japanese Academy of Martial Arts
    CIA spy....?

    Short (7pp) article from The Economist
    http://www.economist.com/node/21568589/print
    full book
    Shoriki - Miracle Man of Japan (1957)


    Last edited by NBK on Thu May 22, 2014 10:21 am; edited 2 times in total
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    Cichorei Kano

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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Sat May 17, 2014 10:30 pm

    NBK wrote:Shōriki Matsutarō was a number of things:
    policeman
    10dan jūdōka
    newspaper man who built the world's largest paper, the Yomiuri
    Class A war criminal imprisoned by the Occupation
    baseball prompter who brought Babe Ruth and Moe Berg (a real spy) to Japan
    father of the Japanese nuclear power program
    founder and first President of the Nihon Budokan
    first president of the Japanese Academy of Martial Arts
    CIA spy....?

    Short (7pp) article from The Economist
    http://www.economist.com/node/21568589/print
    full book
    Shoriki - Miracle Man of Japan (1957)


    Excellent find and interesting stuff, NBK ! Thanks for posting.


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by seatea on Sat May 17, 2014 10:52 pm

    What an extraordinary and awful man. Thank you for posting it. Monkey paralysed. Rat dead...


    Do you know where did he learned his judo?
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Sat May 17, 2014 11:44 pm

    seatea wrote:What an extraordinary and awful man. Thank you for posting it. Monkey paralysed. Rat dead...


    Do you know where did he learned his judo?

    I have pictures of him training under Mifune.


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Sun May 18, 2014 12:11 am

    Police judo and Kodokan.
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    Jonesy

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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Jonesy on Thu May 22, 2014 6:02 am

    This sort of world as we know is murky with no black and white - just shades of grey everywhere.

    The accusation of war crimes according to the article were "alleged" and politically motivated and ultimately thrown out so perhaps a bit OTT to say he was a Class A War Criminal.

    Did he also not fund the building of the modern Kodokan and have the Shoriki Cup tournament named after him?
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Thu May 22, 2014 10:20 am

    Jonesy wrote:This sort of world as we know is murky with no black and white - just shades of grey everywhere.

    The accusation of war crimes according to the article were "alleged" and politically motivated and ultimately thrown out so perhaps a bit OTT to say he was a Class A War Criminal.

    Did he also not fund the building of the modern Kodokan and have the Shoriki Cup tournament named after him?
    Actually, a typo corrected to read:
    'Arrested as a Class A war criminal by the Occupation, finally released without being brought to trial after an extended detention.'

    Thanks, I typed the first lines in a hurry and screwed that up.

    He did a lot to help fund the new Kodokan building, and yes, that tournament is named after him.
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Davaro on Thu May 22, 2014 5:20 pm

    How did a man, busy as he was, get to 10th Dan?

    I assume his cash and political connections are the answer. However, looking at everything he did, it would not surprize me if he was a brilliant Judoka as well. These types of men are few and far between.



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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by aiyotsu on Tue Jun 03, 2014 6:37 am

    hello NBK, I no longer recall where, but some years ago I read that Mifune went every week to the prison to train with a war criminal. Perhaps it was this man. Kind regards Aiyotsu


    Last edited by aiyotsu on Tue Jun 03, 2014 6:39 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : typo)
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:41 am

    Now that's an interesting anecdote if true - Mifune trudging off to Sugamo prison to train Shōriki.

    Also, since I wrote this I talked to a reporter at the Economist. Their Tokyo bureau is housed inside the Yomiuri newspaper HQ, had been for decades. But they refused to even accept an interview about Shōriki.

    I've heard many things since - an interesting character, one that will not come out in most of the pablum histories of martial arts.


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:54 am

    Jonesy wrote:This sort of world as we know is murky with no black and white - just shades of grey everywhere.

    The accusation of war crimes according to the article were "alleged" and politically motivated and ultimately thrown out so perhaps a bit OTT to say he was a Class A War Criminal.

    Did he also not fund the building of the modern Kodokan and have the Shoriki Cup tournament named after him?

    Actually there was a category of war criminal called Class G that was a catch-all for political crimes (I'll dig up the exact wording someday) including membership in certain ultra nationalist political groups, so you could say this category was specifically 'politically motivated'. The intent of SCAP was clear - to eradicate the political factors that led to the environment that led Japan to 'aggressive war'.

    The Class G war criminal list was not to simply arrest everyone; while a few of them were arrested and imprisoned, they were mostly gents with multiple counts.  Most of the rest, the small fry with only one link or association, were simply banned from public office - running for elected position, working in prefectural govts, teaching school (including budo !!) etc.

    At one point SCAP included the entire membership of the Dai Nippon Butokukai under the lists of Class G war criminals until it was pointed out that the majority of Japanese politicians had been DNBK members since childhood; if they were all banned there'd be no one left to run the govt.  So finally the banned list was greatly reduced to the top leadership of the DNBK.

    Shōriki had many of the suspect relationships that would bring scrutiny from the SCAP Occupation authorities.

    Also, Ueshiba Morihei, the founder of aikidō was supposedly listed as a Class G war criminal. Not sure if true or what association led to that, but he was a top member of the DNBK.

    I suppose under the original definition of Class G war criminal, retired Admiral Nangō Jiro, Kano's nephew and the second head of the Kōdōkan (1937-1948?), a top member of the DNBK, would have been considered a Class G war criminal.

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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Tue Jun 03, 2014 10:33 am

    Davaro wrote:How did a man, busy as he was, get to 10th Dan?

    I assume his cash and political connections are the answer. However, looking at everything he did, it would not surprize me if he was a brilliant Judoka as well. These types of men are few and far between.


    Funny you should mention this, especially given how often the ranks of anyone who is promoted by an organization which is not the Kôdôkan or the IJF are considered suspicious or worse, when in reality no other judo organization has ever remotely sold as many ranks as the Kôdôkan. Even the IJF has a hard time keeping up with that. Shoriki Matsutarô is a prime example of this.

    He never was a 6th dan, because he got the privilege to be jump-promoted from 5th to 7th dan in 1952 He was an advocate of Kanô's ideas in particular the bringing other martial arts to the Kôdôkan, something that Professor Shishida Fumiaki has written about in one of his articles. So Shoriki gave money to have this realized and the 'new' Kôdôkan building (the one from 1958) was supposed to realize that. When this did not happen he was livid and there was a major row between him and the Kôdôkan, as he considered this a breach of contract. The guy had money and lawyers and he had the Kôdôkan with their back to the wall. In the end he then gave money to build another hall to realize that part of Kanô's idea, which would be the Nippon Budôkan.

    In this way the issue became more or less settled, and the Kôdôkan agreed to jump-promote him once again, now from 7th to 9th dan, and this in 1963 as the Nippon Budôkan building was taking shape.

    The relationship between Kanô Risei, a mediocre brown belt, and Mifune Kyûzô, himself still promoted to 9th dan by the shihan himself and 7 years after Kanô's death to 10th dan, sucked. Mifune had been virtually in power, having been a 10th dan for 20 years and having the judo respect of everyone even though he had his lesser side too. Hence the Kôdôkan under Kanô Risei committed to never make anyone 10th dan anymore so that Kanô Risei would have something to say. So no one was going to get a 10th dan including Shoriki Matsutarô, so inventiveness was called in just like how politicians do this kind of stuff, so they waited until the guy died on October 9, 1969, then immediately promoted him and antedated the promotion certificate to October 8, 1969 so that theoretically they could claim that he was "promoted while still alive" which is what Shoriki wanted, whereas in reality he never actually held that rank as a living person, what was what Kanô Risei wanted.

    Why this is all considered normal an acceptable, but someone who holds a shodan from a non-NGB is totally unacceptable and questionable, beats me.


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by aiyotsu on Tue Jun 03, 2014 9:57 pm

    Hello again NBK I started a clear file of hard copy downloads on anything I could find about Mifune back then too. I was going to write a short story for kids about him. It is possible I have something of interest there. All my hard copy stuff now lives in a cabinet at the Dojo, however I will not be there for two days. I will let you know. Regards aiyotsu
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Davaro on Wed Jun 04, 2014 5:38 pm

    Cichorei Kano wrote:
    Davaro wrote:How did a man, busy as he was, get to 10th Dan?

    I assume his cash and political connections are the answer. However, looking at everything he did, it would not surprize me if he was a brilliant Judoka as well. These types of men are few and far between.


    Funny you should mention this, especially given how often the ranks of anyone who is promoted by an organization which is not the Kôdôkan or the IJF are considered suspicious or worse, when in reality no other judo organization has ever remotely sold as many ranks as the Kôdôkan. Even the IJF has a hard time keeping up with that. Shoriki Matsutarô is a prime example of this.

    He never was a 6th dan, because he got the privilege to be jump-promoted from 5th to 7th dan in 1952  He was an advocate of Kanô's ideas in particular the bringing other martial arts to the Kôdôkan, something that Professor Shishida Fumiaki has written about in one of his articles. So Shoriki gave money to have this realized and the 'new' Kôdôkan building (the one from 1958) was supposed to realize that. When this did not happen he was livid and there was a major row between him and the Kôdôkan, as he considered this a breach of contract. The guy had money and lawyers and he had the Kôdôkan with their back to the wall. In the end he then gave money to build another hall to realize that part of Kanô's idea, which would be the Nippon Budôkan.

    In this way the issue became more or less settled, and the Kôdôkan agreed to jump-promote him once again, now from 7th to 9th dan, and this in 1963 as the Nippon Budôkan building was taking shape.

    The relationship between Kanô Risei, a mediocre brown belt, and Mifune Kyûzô, himself still promoted to 9th dan by the shihan himself and 7 years after Kanô's death to 10th dan, sucked. Mifune had been virtually in power, having been a 10th dan for 20 years and having the judo respect of everyone even though he had his lesser side too. Hence the Kôdôkan under Kanô Risei committed to never make anyone 10th dan anymore so that Kanô Risei would have something to say. So no one was going to get a 10th dan including Shoriki Matsutarô, so inventiveness was called in just like how politicians do this kind of stuff, so they waited until the guy died on October 9, 1969, then immediately promoted him and antedated the promotion certificate to October 8, 1969 so that theoretically they could claim that he was "promoted while still alive" which is what Shoriki wanted, whereas in reality he never actually held that rank as a living person, what was what Kanô Risei wanted.

    Why this is all considered normal an acceptable, but someone who holds a shodan from a non-NGB is totally unacceptable and questionable, beats me.

    Thank you for the response.

    It is as I thought then..

    Your last sentence which I made bold is so true it is funny. I actually chuckled.

    You get people that investigate, as if it were some or other grand fraud or something, people that claim to be a shodan. And then as you say, don't accept this shodan claim unless they are tested by the "home" NGB. As if shodan is the holy grail and to claim to be one, one is a God.

    If I had to go to Japan, test for Shodan at a place other than the Kodokan, pass and return home - It would not be accepted.

    But if I had to cut a cheque to the Kodokan for a mill or so, they would probably give me a certificate for rukudan and then I would be "legit"

    Seems legit. Indeed.


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by BillC on Thu Jun 05, 2014 4:46 am

    Davaro wrote:
    You get people that investigate, as if it were some or other grand fraud or something, people that claim to be a shodan. And then as you say, don't accept this shodan claim unless they are tested by the "home" NGB. As if shodan is the holy grail and to claim to be one, one is a God.

    If I had to go to Japan, test for Shodan at a place other than the Kodokan, pass and return home - It would not be accepted.

    "The Kodokan" ... the school that the founder ... errr ... founded. Recognized, mythologized, misunderstood. But accepted.

    The problem is ... there are little Hitlers everywhere. They like checking for the sake of checking, checking, checking and a veto power over someone else is likely the one act that makes them feel powerful in a world that somehow refuses to see how wonderful they are. If we have a pulse and venture out from under our bedcovers we cannot help but run into people like this constantly ... and yes in judo they seem attracted to promotion boards and refereeing because goodness knows these folks really, really like the rules and making other people obey them.

    But the other problem is that there are people out there "passing bad paper" so to speak, often for the same reasons of insecurity as the little clerks. "I practically have my x-dan, and I know more than most x+2 dan for sure, so I'll just modify this document and wear this belt because the actual ones were so UNFAIRLY withheld from me and my wonderfulness."

    On occasion there are ... and I know at least a couple of very severe cases ... the sociopaths who get into judo as a way of seeking victims ... financial, sexual, etc. Sometimes quite a bit of overlap with the above I might add. Just witness what occurred recently in Santa Barbara.

    THEN ... coming back to judo ... there are the victims of the second and third group whose bad paper is once removed.

    So after a while in this weird lifestyle we call judo one runs into these guys ... and they are usually emotionally microphallic guys ... and sometimes we are asked what should be done, where they should be placed in terms of responsibility and resource.

    At that moment reliable references are necessary. And an NGB, or a recognizable non-NGB national organization, or the Kodokan are at least known quantities, one knows what those groups are up to and the approximate amount of hanky-panky one should look out for. Better than "I got my shodan from Master Guido Sarducci at the Red Dragon dojo in Lenore, North Carolina ... and he didn't believe in national registration because ... (see 1,2 and 3 above)." Time to check if that guy even can fall correctly, much less letting him loose in randori ... for his own safety.

    It seems to me that the objective should not to be to tear down organizations for their imperfections ... because we are butt-sore from our encounters with them ... but to work to make rank credible, and simultaneously to widen our understanding of what other organizations require for rank ... and to really think about what is important when judging those standards in our own local organizations.

    P.S. - one can get a Kodokan rank card from many dojo in Japan besides da big house upstairs from Kasuga Station.


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Mon Jun 09, 2014 6:54 pm

    [quote="BillC"]
    Davaro wrote:.....

    P.S. - one can get a Kodokan rank card from many dojo in Japan besides da big house upstairs from Kasuga Station.
    In what is probably a vain attempt to get this back on track, I'll point out that there is only one place to get a Kōdōkan rank card - and that's the Kōdōkan.

    I think what you refer to is that lower rank tests and promotions are delegated to lower level organizations in Japan, such as:
    - 1 to 3 dan: 'ku' ('city') organizations inside larger metropolitan areas (Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto) or independent cities (e.g., Sendai, Fukuoka)
    - 4 to 5 dan: large city judo federations (e.g., Tokyo, Osaka) and prefectures (e.g., Kanagawa, Chiba)
    - 6 dan up: centralized to the Kōdōkan nationwide - either travel to Tokyo or wait for one of the roaming teams to test in your area

    Even though the lower ranks are delegated, the Kōdōkan accepts the lower level testing and issues the rank (and gets their initial membership fees and a portion of the promotion fees)

    NOTE: the police have their own promotion system up to 8dan, I am told, but even the police childrens' dojo register their students' promotions with the Kōdōkan. Just this weekend I was at a kata clinice with my 'ku' judo federation, and a couple of young police shepherding their youth through the kata are this year's Nage no Kata winners. Man, did one of them make his teenage tori look like a stone killer - the parents were impressed with the flying about with a mere touch from the slim teenager!

    NBK


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by aiyotsu on Mon Jun 09, 2014 9:23 pm

    hello NBK, i could find no reference to Mifune visiting the prison in my file.
    I think it may have been from a Budo site other than Judo but not really sure. aiyotsu
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:12 am

    aiyotsu wrote:hello NBK, i could find no reference to Mifune visiting the prison in my file.
    I think it may have been from a Budo site other than Judo but not really sure. aiyotsu
    Thank you, nevertheless. With that in mind, I'll take another look at his 'memoir', Kohaku no Waza (Techniques of Amber), perhaps there's something there!

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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Tue Jun 10, 2014 1:38 am

    Not very relevant --I know-- but there is a pretty famous pic of Shoriki practicing with Mifune. It just shows them in 'kamae' with gripping.


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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by fredlinux on Tue Jun 10, 2014 6:01 am




    Picture of Mifune and Shōriki
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by NBK on Tue Jun 10, 2014 9:19 am

    fredlinux wrote:


    Picture of Mifune and Shōriki

    Fredlinux, thanks!

    CK, is the the belt tie that you mentioned?
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    Re: Shōriki Matsutarō - Judo 10dan, "war criminal?", spy?

    Post by Cichorei Kano on Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:22 pm

    NBK wrote:
    fredlinux wrote:


    Picture of Mifune and Shōriki

    Fredlinux, thanks!

    CK, is the the belt tie that you mentioned?  

    Shoriki uses a half-bow knot like many jûdôka from the days of Kanô. Yes, I have previously referred to it. However, Kanô and Mifune themselves usually wore a double bow, which is how I normally tie my belt too, at least if the material allows and when I was not competing.


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