The Military Attaché in Japan (McIlroy) to the Assistant Chief of Staff (Smith)5
1. Today at a luncheon given me by the dean of the Military Attachés, the Soviet Military Attaché sought me out and talked at length very frankly. The gist of his conversation was that:— [Page 780]
It is to the interest of both the United States and the USSR to come to some friendly understanding.
The Soviets would be glad to pay the small debts owed to America but that would necessitate the recognition of debts elsewhere, the total of which is very large.
That instead of recognizing those debts, the Soviets would be glad to arrange something else that would be the equivalent of paying the debts.
That the propaganda question is a difficult one for them to make any promises about, as it is difficult for them to control.
That two years ago, Japan could have taken the Maritime Province and Amur Province, but now he doubted very much their ability to do so. In this connection, he mentioned their superiority in tanks and their ability to produce many times the number of tanks that the Japanese can produce.
That the Japanese now have about 300 tanks.
Lieut. Colonel, G.S.
- Copy transmitted to the Department by the War Department, March 21.↩