Born Dec. 27, 1898; died Oct. 12, 1960. Active in the social-democratic movement in Japan. Graduated from the University of Waseda in 1923.
From 1925 to 1940, Asanuma occupied positions of leadership in the social-democratic parties of Japan. He actively participated in the founding of the Socialist Party of Japan (SPJ) in November 1945. From 1948 to 1951 (except for an interval from April 1949 to April 1950), Asanuma was secretary general of the Central Executive Committee (CEC) of the SPJ. In 1960 he became chairman of the CEC SPJ. From 1958 to 1960 he was one of the leaders in the struggle against the Japanese-American “security agreement,” decisively protesting American imperialism and Japanese reactionism. He was killed by a fascist terrorist.