793.94119/447: Telegram

The Ambassador in China (Johnson) to the Secretary of State

426. The spokesman of the Chinese Foreign Office, according to the local Chinese press of August 25, denied rumors apparently emanating from London to the effect that Italy is endeavoring to mediate in the Far Eastern hostilities and that a tentative approach had been made by the latter to Wang Ching-wei in the matter. A spokesman declared that Italy had not approached China on the subject and that the rumor was probably fabricated by the Japanese for ulterior reasons.

In a recent conversation with H. H. Kung, the latter, in making reference to the truce reached between Russia and Japan over the Changkufeng incident, told me that he was puzzled as to why Germany had intervened in that matter to advise the Japanese that they should not so aggravate the situation as to become involved in a war with Russia. Dr. Kung is apparently convinced that Germany acted in the sense described above and that as a result he is seeking to moderate the situation on the Manchurian-Siberian border.
Linked with the above is a conversation which I recently had with Alessandrini, local representative of the Italian Embassy in China, who in the course of a discussion of the Sino-Japanese hostilities commented to the effect that the Japanese military were making a hopeless mess of their program and activities in China. He added that the Italian Government had informed the Japanese Government that Italy had no desire to become involved in an international war precipitated by Japan.
I am led by the foregoing and other observations to the conclusion that neither Germany nor Italy is pleased with the manner in which Japan has been acting in the Far East; and that these two powers have intimated to Japan that the latter cannot depend upon them for assistance in case Japan should become involved in hostilities with the Soviet Union.

Repeated to Peiping and Shanghai. Shanghai please repeat to Tokyo.