793.94119/382: Telegram

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


28. Reference Department’s 10, January 12, 7 p.m. The purpose of the Imperial Conference was to give the Emperor’s sanction to [Page 437] whatever decisions had already been formulated and adopted by the Government. The conference ended following a brief session, and the decisions previously taken are now “immutable” in Japanese eyes.

Even a friendly talk on the subject with the Minister for Foreign Affairs would have to be reported to the Cabinet, and I have little doubt that in the present tense atmosphere the proposed representations by me to attempt influencing or modifying the Imperial Conference’s decisions in contrast to protection of specific interests of the United States would at this moment be interpreted as an effort to interfere with the Emperor’s prerogative and would entail a reaction the reverse of what is desired.

As I fully realize the fundamental importance of the views and facts presented in your telegram, I shall bear them in mind constantly until a favorable occasion permits their expression. However, we are aware that not only the substance of the Department’s outlined points but also the effects, hazards, and ramifications involved in Japanese policy were weighed very carefully by the Government here prior to presentation to the Emperor of the proposals implementing that policy.

Appreciating fully your wish for me to use my discretion in the matter, I trust that consideration of the foregoing views may not prove them to run counter to yours.