Episode 145 – An Offer You Can’t Refuse, Part 2

 

What does organized crime look like in modern Japan, and why does anybody put up with it? Also, how many rocket launchers can you buy with 50 pounds of amphetamines?

All that and more, this week.
Listen to the episode here.

Sources

Kaplan, David and Alec Dubro. Yakuza: Japan’s Criminal Underworld, 2nd Edition.

Adelstein, Jake. Tokyo Vice.

Saga, Junichi. Confessions of a Yakuza.

Eiko, Siniawer. Ruffians, Yakuza, Natinoalists.

Images

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Taoka Kazuo, boss of the influential Yamaguchi-gumi.
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Taoka in the mode of a traditional yakuza boss. The modern yakuza rely heavily on symbolic links with the Japanese past to legitimate themselves.
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Kodama Yoshio in 1984, as part of the trials surrounding the Lockheed Scandal.
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Yamaguchi gumi members attending a funeral during the internal fighting following the death fo Taoka Kazuo. The fighting was deeply embarassing to the yakuza due to the intensity of combat between the two sides.
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Police prepare to raid the HQ of the Yamaguchi-gumi in Kobe.
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Modern Japanese governments have tried to take a harder line with the yakuza; this particular image is part of an anti-yakuza campaign instituted by the city government of Sendai.

 

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