894.48B/163: Telegram

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

105. For American Red Cross:

“For your information the following résumé of Government activities since disaster and our relation thereto. Cataclysm which so devastated four provinces including the capital as to render 2,000,000 persons partially or entirely destitute created dangerous conditions for entire nation. New Cabinet began its functions the day of disaster and met situation by promulgation following Imperial ordinances, so promptly and effectively enforced no serious results occurred, (a) Martial law, four Army divisions disposed at important points. This made it possible to begin reconstruction immediately. Engineer corps blasting, restoring telephone, telegraph service, removing debris, building bridges, (b) Immediate appropriation twelve and one half million dollars for relief, (c) Ordinance against profiteering obeyed with loyalty by people who have a pride in it. Prices Tokio now lower outside, (d) Against creating or circulating false information, this strictly enforced, (e) To buy abroad and sell articles [garbled group] to resell to public at cost. Purchases through foreign firms transportation assigned to five Japanese companies. (f) Moratorium 30 days now lifted. Nippon Bank announces acceptance stocks, bonds as collateral up to $50,000,000 guaranteed against loss by Government, (g) Relief Bureau. (h) Established organization of institute for reconstruction of capital [Page 486] with force of experts as advisers. Outstanding features admirable efficiency Army-Navy; loyalty, obedience and courage of people; enlistment captains of industry regardless of party under Relief Bureau paralleling America’s action in World War. With this bureau aid Japcross–American relief cooperating. Amcross cooperation most effective because of initial and prompt gift of cash enabling Japan purchase [from] nearby countries and of leaving responsibility for distribution in hands of Japanese. Japanese plan to avoid pauperization by selling at cost, a laudable one, and will be supported by people, proceeds will be used to buy more supplies. When all said and done America’s contributions will not supply 5 percent of the enormous property loss. Warmest expressions of gratitude in all newspapers and from individuals of all classes for America’s effective cooperation.”