861.00/6134: Telegram

The Ambassador in Japan ( Morris ) to the Secretary of State

Your January 12, 7 p.m., just received. Since I delivered our Government’s statement to the Minister of Foreign Affairs on the evening of January 12th I have kept in close touch personally with Viscount Uchida and Mr. Hanihara.34 The Cabinet was in session all day yesterday and the Diplomatic Advisory Council is now meeting. The premature announcement at Vladivostok and the reference to secret instructions coupled with the statement that the first contingent of our troops would sail on January 12 raised a storm of indignation and resentment. As the Government is still debating its next move no official statement has yet been made.

There is still much bitter criticism of our alleged discourtesy and double dealing. The aggressive and imperialistic elements in Japanese public life are making the most of the incident to further their views and policies but, as I judge the situation, more cautious counsels will prevail and a policy of expedient compromise will be adopted. Such policy will probably include the immediate despatch of the Takata division to Siberia and the withdrawal of troops from the Amur Railway and their concentration on the line of the Chinese Eastern Railway with such control of operation as can be secured without unduly exciting Russian and Chinese feelings.

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  1. Masanao Hanihara. Japanese Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs.