SCANDALS: Lockheed's Kuro Maku

Shed your blood for the state, shed tears for your friends, and sweat for your family.

—Yoshio Kodama

A powerful yet shadowy Japanese ultranationalist, Kodama also shed much sweat for Lockheed Aircraft Corp.

Last week it was disclosed that for many years he was Lockheed's secret agent in Japan, collecting more than $7 mil lion since 1960 to help the firm sell air planes. An enormously wealthy man (worth an estimated $1 billion), with no readily identifiable occupation, Ko dama helped to found Japan's ruling party, assisted in the naming of Prime Ministers, and presumably used his connections on Lockheed's behalf.

His...