Address Delivered by the Japanese Prime Minister (Prince Konoye) Before the Japanese Diet on July 27, 193717


The Premier’s administrative address in the Diet, as given by Domei, follows:

“At this 71st session of the Imperial Diet, I have the honor of stating the views of the Government.

“At a time when our nation is confronted by serious problems and difficulties, I have been most unexpectedly appointed Premier, and I am keenly aware of the heavy burden I have taken on my shoulders.

“I desire to elucidate, first of all, the principle which underlies the endeavors of the Government to fulfill its immense responsibilities. This principle is to make all our policies stem from a single source, namely, the spirit of the solemn and superb polity of our Empire. Expression of this spirit means that externally we should, in concert with other Powers, strive to establish true peace firmly in the world in accordance with international justice and to enhance more and more the prestige of our nation abroad and that internally we should define clearly the relationship between Sovereign and subjects and enable each of the people to find his proper place in accordance with social justice, bringing about thereby a steady and healthy advance of the national fortunes. Such, then, is the principle the Government expects to observe in formulating and carrying out its policies along various lines.

“It is a source of profound regret that, with the troublesome question with the Soviet Union brought to a peaceful settlement and relations with other Powers increasingly amicable, there has occurred the present incident in China and that the Government has been compelled to make an important decision. I am very grateful, however, that the Government has been accorded the united support of the nation at this critical moment. In sending troops to North China, of course, the Government has no other purpose, as was explained in its recent statement, than to preserve the peace of East Asia. I cannot but hope most fervently that reconsideration and self-discipline on the part of the Government and people of China will make speedily possible a fundamental adjustment of Sino-Japanese relations.

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“In view of the current circumstances at home and abroad, it is of the most urgent necessity for us to perfect our national defense and develop the economic power of our country. Accordingly, as the basic means of carrying out our national policy, the Government feels imperative need to devise a comprehensive scheme aiming principally at expansion of the nation’s productive power, establishment of equilibrium in international accounts and adjustment of the supply of and demand for commodities. Investigations are in progress with a view to formulating a concrete program based on the conception of Japan and Manchukuo as a single unit.”

  1. Reprinted from the Japan Advertiser (Tokyo) of July 28, 1937.