The Ambassador in the Soviet Union ( Steinhardt ) to the Secretary of State
[Received 11:33 p.m.]
1209. In the course of a conversation this afternoon the British Ambassador47 stated to me that he had learned that the Japanese Emperor within the past few days has approved an agreement between Japan and Germany providing that Japan is to keep the United States fleet “occupied” in the Pacific and in return Germany is to arrange with the Soviet Union for the transit of supplies to Japan from Germany over the Trans-Siberian Railroad and is to use its good offices in endeavoring to bring about a rapprochement between the Soviet Union and Japan. The Ambassador also stated that he had reason to believe that Germany and Italy proposed shortly to call a conference of Yugoslavia, Greece, and Bulgaria for the purpose of subjecting them completely to Axis domination. The Ambassador added that he and his Government were endeavoring to persuade Yugoslavia, Greece, and Bulgaria to come to an understanding with Turkey for their joint resistance to Axis pressure or domination, the agreement to be under the benevolence of the Soviet Union, but that he had little hope of success.
- Sir Stafford Cripps.↩