The Secretary of State to Senator Arthur H. Vandenberg

My Dear Senator Vandenberg: In reply to your letter of August 24 inquiring whether “the Government of Japan specifically understands that our desire for ‘formulation of a new treaty’ is at the base of our recent abrogation notice”, I may say that I have every reason to believe that the Government of Japan clearly understands that this Government’s notice for termination of the treaty was given for the purpose clearly stated in the communication given to the Japanese Embassy on July 26, which purposes also had been clearly stated in your resolution. It stands to reason, and it may confidently be assumed, that both the Government and the people of the United States and the Government and the people of Japan desire that relations between the two countries be on a treaty basis. You of course realize that a treaty of amity and commerce is but one of the many items which form the basis of relations between countries parties thereto; that in a treaty of amity and commerce there are many provisions other than those which relate to commerce; and that, as relations between countries are expected to be regulated by treaty provisions, so, in turn, treaty provisions must be based upon realities of practice and of intention in the relations between the countries which are the parties to the treaties.

I can assure you that we are not failing to preserve a clear record in regard to any feature of relations between this country and Japan.

It would give me great pleasure to talk with you, at your convenience, with regard to essential aspects of the situation and problems involved.90

Sincerely yours,

Cordell Hull
  1. Senator Vandenberg replied on September 8 that he would “be most happy to discuss this matter with you personally whenever the opportunity permits and whenever you may desire”. (711.942/290)