Ichiro Hatoyama (鳩山 一郎, Hatoyama Ichiro, 1 January 1883 – 7 March 1959) was a Japanese politician and the 52nd, 53rd and 54th Prime Minister of Japan, serving terms from 10 December 1954 through 19 March 1955, from then to 22 November 1955, and from then through 23 December 1956.
Ichiro Hatoyama was, as his name indicates, the first born boy. He was born into a wealthy cosmopolitan family in Tokyo. His father Kazuo Hatoyama (1856–1911) was a Yale graduate (and Speaker of the House of Representatives) and his mother Haruko Hatoyama (1863–1938) was a famous author and the founder of Kyoritsu Women's University. His brother Hideo Hatoyama was a noted jurist.
Ichiro was a Master Mason and a Protestant Christian (Baptist). He was Japan's third postwar Christian Prime Minister.
Iichiro Hatoyama, Ichiro's only son, made a career for himself as a civil servant in the Budget Bureau of the Finance Ministry. Iichiro retired after having achieved the rank of administrative Vice Minister. In his second career in politics, he rose to become Foreign Minister of Japan in 1976–1977.
One of Ichiro's grandsons, Yukio Hatoyama, became prime minister in 2009 as a member of the Democratic Party of Japan.
Ichiro was elected to the House of Representatives as a Rikken Seiyukai member in 1915. He was about to become prime minister in 1946, but was barred from politics for five years by Supreme Commander Allied Powers because they thought he had co-operated with the authoritarian government in the 1930s and 1940s. He was allowed to return in 1951. As prime minister in 1955, he rebuilt diplomatic ties with the Soviet Union, and favored parole for some of the Class A war criminals who had been sentenced to life imprisonment by the Tokyo Trial.
CIA files that were declassified in 2005 and then publicized in January 2007 by the U.S. National Archives detail a plot by ultranationalists to assassinate then prime minister Shigeru Yoshida and install a more hawkish government led by Ichiro Hatoyama in 1952. The plot was never carried out.
Ichiro and some members of Hatoyama family are known as advocates of fraternity. During the purge against Ichiro (1946–1951), he received an English book The Totalitarian State against Man originally written in German by an Austrian freemason Richard Nikolaus von Coudenhove-Kalergi from a professor of Waseda University Kesazo Ichimura (1898–1950) who wanted Ichiro to translate the English book into Japanese. The English book struck a sympathetic chord in Ichiro, and he began to advocate fraternity, also known as yuai (友愛) in Japanese.
On March 29, 1951, he was initiated as 1st degree of freemason, and on March 26, 1955, passed as 2nd degree mason, and raised as 3rd degree mason.
His grandsons are advocates of fraternity. However, when a Japanese press asked Yukio Hatoyama's office and the masonic grand lodge of Japan whether Yukio Hatoyama was a freemason, his office denied it and the grand lodge of Japan didn't answer it. At least, on his grandson Kunio Hatoyama, the brother of Yukio, on a Japanese TV program TAKAJIN NO MONEY on August 25, 2012, his partner Emily's Australian father was a member of freemasonry. He said so, and said he had swum in a masonic pool with her at Tokyo when he had started to going steady with her. Although he didn't say he himself was a mason or not, he insisted that he had not been invited to freemasonry, and he guessed his brother Yukio as a freemason.
Yukio and Kunio became the officers of a fraternal organization named Yuai Kyokai (or Yuai Association) with their sister Kazuko, founded by their grandfather Ichiro who became the first president of the former organization in 1953. And also Ichiro's son Iichiro became the third president of the same former organization.
The granddaughter and two grandsons of Ichiro's founded a fraternal school Hatoyama Yuai-Jyuku at Hatoyama Hall (Hatoyama kaikan) on April 2008.
From the corresponding article in the Japanese WikipediaGrand Cordon of the Order of the Chrysanthemum (1959; posthumous)