The Consul General at Shanghai (Gauss) to the Secretary of State

No. 1355

Sir: With reference to my despatch No. 1350 of April 11, 1938,70 in regard to the Japanese demands for increased participation in the administration of the International Settlement at Shanghai, I have the honor to enclose copy of a memorandum70 prepared by the Secretary [Page 131] of the Council recording a further discussion between the Japanese Consul General, Mr. S. Hidaka, and the Chairman of the Council, on April 11th.

It will be noted therefrom that the Japanese Consul General desires that the Council proceed in the immediate future to carry out in full the proposals contained in the Council’s reply to the Japanese demands, while the Chairman of the Council pointed out that the Japanese authorities are expected as an earnest of their good faith to take steps simultaneously to restore Council control in the areas north of the Creek.

It will further be observed that the Japanese Consul General is seeking to assure that the new Japanese Special Deputy Commissioner of Police shall have “command and supervision” over the Japanese members of the force, which is not what is intended on the part of the Council.

I have had occasion recently in my telegrams to the Department to mention that the new Japanese Consul General, Mr. S. Hidaka, (formerly Counselor of Embassy and later Chargé d’Affaires after the recall of Ambassador Kawagoe) does little more than support and advance the views of the Japanese military. He is personally and socially agreeable, but unlike his predecessor, Mr. S. Okamoto, who was finally “promoted” to the post of Counselor of Embassy at London, he is not disposed to harmonize the foreign and Japanese points of view and to seek solutions which will respect both the foreign and Japanese interests involved. While his predecessor was apparently close to the Japanese naval authorities, who are generally willing to take a more reasonable view than the Japanese military authorities, the new Consul General appears to be the mouthpiece of the Japanese militarists, who give little evidence of any desire or intention to respect foreign rights and interests.

In connection with this question of increased Japanese participation in the Municipal administration, I enclose copy of an article71 which has appeared in the local press quoting a Reuter despatch from Tokyo dated April 11th, in which Mr. Chikayaki Akagi, now chief of the secretariat of the Overseas Ministry, who has been nominated as the Special Deputy Commissioner of the Shanghai Municipal Police, is quoted by the Asahi Shimbun as declaring that he is convinced that the Japanese language “will and must” become the official language of the Shanghai Municipal police service. This attitude on the part of Mr. Akagi does not suggest that he is likely to be a particularly agreeable or friendly element in the Municipal administration.

Respectfully yours,

C. E. Gauss
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