793.94/7294: Telegram

The Counselor of Embassy in China85 (Lockhart) to the Secretary of State

10. A local Japanese press correspondent has given the local United Press correspondent an account of a written interview given yesterday to Japanese pressmen by Major General Tada, Tientsin garrison commander, at a luncheon at Tientsin. Local Japanese pressmen were taken to and from Tientsin by Japanese military plane. In view of the probability that the American correspondent’s account was censored at least in part his report is being telegraphed herewith.

According to the Japanese press correspondent, General Tada characterized Chiang Kai-shek, his capitalistic group and the personnel of the National Government, as the common enemy of the Chinese people and declared the eradication of this evil as Japan’s mission. He stated that Japan’s mission is to maintain the eternal peace of the Orient and to emancipate and protect Oriental nations from the oppression of the white races; that the distress of the Chinese people is the result of the political failure of Chiang and the National Government; that the latter’s perfidy and immorality is illustrated by its forgetting Japan’s past benefactions to China; that it has persisted in attempting to intrigue with foreign nations to effect Japan’s destruction; that as long as Chiang and his clique are in power no Japanese policy toward Chinese can be successful. Tada went on to say that Japan’s policy could best be effected by establishing a peaceful land where she could be free to act and thence extend that area through example and precept forcing the Chinese people to change their present attitude by demonstration. He said that at present North China is in a position to enable Japan to realize such a plan more easily and quickly than any other section of China.
Tada outlined the policy of the Japanese Army in China as having eight points:
Japan’s attitude toward Chinese must always be fair and impartial;
Japan’s policy must be implemented by continual exercising of pressure on China;
commodities must be exchanged freely on a mutually profitable basis;
Japan must respect China’s independence;
Japan must not trust personalities too implicitly;
all new and old military groups in North China and officials who extort money from the people must be eliminated;
Japan must work for the elimination of professional pro-Japanese politicians in China;
both sides must correct mistaken idea of superiority.
Tada’s statement would seem to indicate that those observers were mistaken who regarded his arrival in North China in August as an augury of a more milder Japanese policy. His statement may in short be connected with Leith-Ross’ visit. His statement also indicates that the Japanese military may be abandoning General Sung Che-yuan as a means of gaining their ends in North China. When taken in conjunction with Isogai’s statement reported in Shanghai’s 520, September 10, 2 p.m., it may mean that the Japanese military as a whole have decided on single policy with regard to China as Isogai is understood to have represented the more reactionary military when he came to China and as Tada was understood to represent the viewpoint of the Japanese Minister of War.
Doihara is reported to have gone from Manchuria to Kalgan to discuss, after seeing local Assistant Japanese Military Attaché, Chinese promises made with respect to Chahar presumably those made as a result of the Japanese demands of last June.

To Tokyo by mail.

  1. On September 17 the Legation in China was raised to the rank of Embassy (see pp. 508 ff), with Minister Johnson presenting his credentials as Ambassador at Nanking.