Otoya Yamaguchi (山口二矢, Yamaguchi Otoya, February 22, 1943-November 2, 1960) was a Japanese political activist and assassin. He killed the head of the Japanese Socialist Party (JCP). On October 12, 1960, the killing was broadcast live by NHK television.
Yamaguchi was an assassin because he killed a politically active man. His reasons for the murder were political.
Yamaguchi was a member of a radical group. In 1960, he killed Inejiro Asanuma when he was at a public meeting. Soon after, Yamaguchi killed himself in a juvenile center. He wrote on the wall of the room in which he hung himself. His last words were written using a paste made from tooth powder and water. He wrote "Seven lives for my country ..." which was a reference to the last words of 14th century samurai Kusunoki Masashige.
Yasushi Nagao captured the assassination in a dramatic photograph. The Japanese photographer was the first non-American to be awarded the Pulitzer Prize. The image won the 1960 World Press Photo award.
- Socialist Leader is Slain in Tokyo; Asanuma, Who Led Agitation Against U.S. Treaty, Is Stabbed at a Rally," New York Times. October 12, 1960; retrieved 2012-3-15.
- TokyoReporter.com, "Assassin of Inejiro Asanuma remembered by right-wing groups on 50-year anniversary," October 14, 2010; retrieved 2012-3-15.
- "Leftist's Killer Suicide in Japan; Young Rightist Who Stabbed Asanuma Hangs Himself in Detention Center," New York Times. November 3, 1960; "Assassin's Apologies," Time. November 14, 1960; retrieved 2012-3-15.
- Benjamin, Philip. "'All Way Home' Pulitzer Play; Novel Is 'To Kill a Mockingbird'; Mosel Play Wins Pulitzer Prize," New York Times. May 2, 1961; May 02, 1961, ; Wordfamousphotos.com, "Assassination of Japan Socialist Inejiro Asanuma ; retrieved 2012-3-15.
- Iconicphotos.com, "Tokyo stabbing"; retrieved 2012-3-15.
- 1960 World Press Photo by Yasushi Nagao; retrieved 2012-3-15.
- Remmick, David. "Reading Japan," New Yorker. February 6, 1995; retrieved 2012-3-15.