Memorandum by the Assistant Secretary of State (Castle)16

The Secretary: The Japanese Ambassador came to see me this morning to say that the dispute over the phrase “in the names of their respective peoples” in the Kellogg Treaty continues unabated in Japan. … The Ambassador says that, unfortunately, the declaration which the Department had already approved has been found to be unsatisfactory to some members of the Privy Council and that they, therefore, will have the Treaty ratified but with a different declaration, the text of which is attached.17 He did not ask me whether the Department approved of the text because I am sure he knew that we should not approve. He merely said that he was exceedingly sorry and that it was the best which could be accomplished. He says that when the deposit of ratification is made in Washington, he will, of course, give us with the deposit the attached declaration, at the same time asking whether this Government will be good enough to transmit it to the other Governments who were original signatories of the Treaty. I told him that the new text came, in my opinion, very close to a reservation. He said that the word “reservation” was as hard to define as the phrase “in the names of their respective peoples” but he felt this declaration was in no way a reservation on the part of Japan to the spirit of the Treaty but merely a reservation as to a single phrase of the text.

(It may be that this declaration will delay the Treaty from becoming effective until we can hear from the Governments signatory to the [Page 248]Treaty. I cannot conceive, however, that any of those Governments would raise opposition.)

W. R. C[astle], Jr.
  1. Marginal notation by the Secretary of State reads: “On first blush I am inclined to think this w’d not affect the contractual part of the treaty and w’d therefore not be a reservation. H[enry] L. S[timson]”
  2. Same as text quoted in telegram No. 64, June 19, 1929, 7 p.m., from the Chargé in Japan, p. 248.