123G861/815: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Japan ( Grew )

318. Your 524, October 16, 11 a.m. The Department approves your decision to avoid making the contents of your impending address such as would run the risk of causing undesirable irritation and friction. The Department is confident that you share its view that there should be no concealment anywhere of the fact that the people of the United States view with disapproval the program upon which Japan’s military leaders have embarked and are engaged of setting up, on the basis and by use of armed force, a political hegemony which the Japanese describe with the term “a new order in Asia”, and that we disapprove both the objective and the methods. We feel that it would be helpful for you to give an extended account of your many contacts and your widespread observations of public opinion during your holiday and to indicate that the American people are well and comprehensively informed regarding what is happening in China; and for you to give a precise account of the present attitude of the American people. We suggest that you include a statement along the lines of the suggestion conveyed in paragraph 11 of the Department’s 304, October 7, 4 p.m.99 We believe that cataloguing of and argumentation regarding specific complaints should be avoided but it should be clearly indicated that there are important and fundamental matters at issue. We feel it desirable that the Japanese people as well as the Japanese Government be brought somehow to realize that the American people are perturbed not only over Japanese interference with the persons, the property and the legitimate material interests in general of American nationals in China but, and to even greater extent, over the implications of the use of armed force in pursuit of national policy whether in Asia or elsewhere.

The above is only by way of suggestion and not by way of prescription. Department is confident that what you decide to say will be discreetly said and be helpful.

  1. Not printed. In this paragraph the Department suggested criticism of Japanese efforts to control Chinese territory and resources, thereby creating a preferential position contrary to the Open Door policy (123G861/811).