893.102S/1741: Telegram

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

141. Reference my No. 139, February 22, 10 p.m., regarding Japanese demands on the Municipal Council.

In consultation this afternoon with my British colleague we were in agreement that the Municipal Council as a preliminary step should ask the Japanese Consul General to elucidate the several points in the Japanese demands particularly points numbered 2 and 3 as they seem to contemplate Japanese action which would infringe the police powers of the Municipal Council and the Council would be under the necessity of consulting the Treaty Power Consuls on any such proposals.
When the Japanese shall have explained their demands, we believe that the Council should submit the matter to the Treaty Power Consuls with their comments and explanations and that no action [Page 4] to accept the Japanese demands should be taken without prior consultation with the interested Consuls and the commanders of the garrison forces.
The emergency proclamation of July 19, 1938, referred to in point 1 of the Japanese demands is that reported to the Department in Shanghai’s No. 992, July 14, 6 p.m., last year.7
Chairman of the Municipal Council tells me that the Chinese members of the Council have undertaken to communicate with Chungking urging that the Chinese Government issue orders that any terrorist activities being conducted at Shanghai by their [agents?] shall cease, and that they will urge other prominent Chinese to make similar representations.
British Consul General tells me that the British Ambassador8 yesterday telegraphed instructions to Chungking to make representations to the same end. In this connection and with reference to my telegram No. 138, February 22, 4 p.m.,9 I am of the opinion that we should also make representations at Chungking. There is considerable feeling here that many of the terrorist activities are being carried on under order of the Chinese Government and that would be stopped only under orders from that Government. Unless this is done the huge Chinese interests and population at Shanghai may well expect drastic Japanese action which the foreign garrisons have neither the force nor the authority to stop.

Repeated to Chungking, Peiping and Tokyo.

  1. Foreign Relations, 1938, vol. iii, p. 225.
  2. Sir Archibald J. K. Clark Kerr.
  3. Not printed.