These recent years have brought to Japan an array of new political institutions and procedures. If judged by the contents of the statute books alone, there would appear to be small resemblance between the basic legal structure and concepts of the prewar Japanese state and those of the present. The theoretic status of the emperor has been fundamentally altered, a new constitution of highly suspect paternity has appeared, civil rights have been accorded recognition and formal protection, and a system of government noted for its centralization and authoritarianism has been subjected to decentralization and democratization. All these are the works of the Occupation or, to be more precise, of the Japanese Government acting as a result of the directives or “suggestions” of the Supreme Commander for the Allied Powers (SCAP).

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