The Chargé in the United Kingdom (Atherton) to the Secretary of State
[Received 4:16 p.m.]
84. I called upon Craigie50 to express congratulations on his designation as one of the Assistant Under Secretaries of State. In the course of the conversation he informed me, stating that they were his own strictly confidential views, (1) that in the recent British proposals for an Anglo-Japanese-American-French-Chinese discussion on economic affairs in the Far East and particularly China the first reactions of the Tokyo Foreign Office were apparently favorable. Craigie deems, if it is possible to keep the price of silver not above its present level and especially if these international conversations lead to some sort of international loan to China, the result may ease Far Eastern [Page 545]tension and the successful economic conversations be followed by political conversations with the hope that Japan and China might evolve a modus vivendi on the question of Manchuria. Reports that individual Chinese had approached American officials in seeking financial assistance have been received here but Craigie felt any Far Eastern action that did not include Japan would be detrimental to Anglo-American purposes in the Far East. He stressed the fact that object of British policy, at this time, was to relieve Far Eastern tension and bring Japan into some final naval agreement that could be accepted by the United States and Great Britain. Craigie felt that the first report of reactions from Tokyo upon Yamamoto’s51 return indicated Japanese were thinking along right lines. Foreign Office understands Hirota52 desires an early naval conference which Craigie personally did not feel could be held anyway before the end of September.
- Craigie said in 2 or 3 weeks Foreign Office anticipated opening conversations on German naval program with the German Ambassador here.
- Simon53 returned today from Paris where he discussed with French his plans to visit Berlin the end of next week. Simon has made no decision as to Warsaw and Moscow visits but it is believed extremely unlikely he will personally contemplate such a journey until he has returned to London from Berlin.
Simon has asked me to call on him next Monday.54
- Robert Leslie Craigie, British Foreign Office Counselor.↩
- Vice Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto, technical adviser to the Japanese delegation at the preliminary naval conversations, London, 1934.↩
- Koki Hirota, Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs.↩
- Sir John Simon, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.↩
- See memorandum by the Chargé in the United
Kingdom, March 5,
i, p. 194.↩