Cold War Postscript
The Liberal Democratic Party’s unexpected victory in last month’s general elections in Japan, after a soporific campaign conducted in the face of complete electoral indifference, gives Europe something to think about – the Italians in particular, for whom the Japanese analogy points up the grim possibility of a Christian Democrat (DC) revival, with its fake piety (and authentic bossism). An extraordinary, indeed absurd similarity between Italian and Japanese politics has persisted for more than forty years and still persists today. In both countries, a dominant anti-Communist party, the Christian Democrats in Italy, the Liberal Democrats in Japan, governed without interruption throughout the Cold War, because anti-American neutralists and Communists never received enough votes to form a government, but always got too many to leave room for a competing centrist party.
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