Happy Science

Happy Science (幸福の科学) is a new Japanese religious organization founded in the 1980s by Ryuho Okawa, who claims to be the incarnation of the supreme being. Along with the Happiness Realization Party, the group’s attempt to enter electoral politics, Happy Science promotes far-right nationalist political views, including military expansion and historical revisionism.

With chapters in several cities in the U.S., Happy Science is said to coordinate and bankroll some of the Japanese nationalist activities in the U.S. For example, the organization’s former San Francisco director and current New York director Yoshi Taguchi spoke at the City and County of San Francisco Board of Supervisors against the proposed comfort women memorial in the city in summer 2015. Happy Science also supports Rompa Project, a historical revisionist group using manga (comics) and other means to spread its message.

In April 2016, members of Happy Science led by James Iwase, a minister of Happy Science, showed up at the board meeting of the San Francisco Unified School District to oppose statewide curriculum revision that includes teaching about comfort women.

Members of Happy Science actively promoting comfort women denial in the U.S. include Yoshi Taguchi, Mitsuhiko Fujii, and Kiminobu Kimura. In addition, several core members of the revisionist group Himawari Japan are known to be members of Happy Science.

During the 2016 U.S. presidential election, Happy Science openly supported the candidacy of Republican Donald Trump (whom it claims is the reincarnation of George Washington), with Taguchi and members of Himawari Japan volunteering at the campaign headquarters at Trump Tower. Jikido “Jay” Aeba, the founding president of Happiness Realization Party, went on to found Japanese Conservative Union, which is spending over $400,000 to lobby the U.S. government and has sponsored events supporting Trump.

Website: https://happy-science.jp/ (Japanese)
website: http://happy-science.org/ (English)

Hiromi Edwards

Hiromi Edwards (エドワーズ博美) is a translator, language instructor, and a comfort women denier. Edwards is a former member of Shinsei Bukkyo (新生佛教), a conservative religious group affiliated with Japan Conference, serving as its translator as well as a writer for Nippon Jiji Hyouron (日本時事評論) published by Shinsei Bukkyo. Edwards, who is a Japanese woman married to an American, studied at Japanese campuses of American universities and teaches Japanese at the Iwakuni U.S. base in Japan.

Since leaving Shinsei Bukkyo, Edwards has participated in comfort women denial as a member of the first Alliance for Truth about Comfort Women Geneva Delegation (2014), the translator for Yumiko Yamamoto’s press conference at the Foreign Correspondents’ Club of Japan, and an attendant for Tony Marano during his visits to Japan.