740.0011 Pacific War/1094

Memorandum by Mr. Theodore G. Achilles of the Division of European Affairs

The British Embassy states that a telegram was despatched by the Foreign Office at 5:00 p.m. London time to the British Ambassador at Tokyo11 instructing him to deliver the following note to the Japanese Foreign Office:

“On the evening of December 7 His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom learned that Japanese forces without previous warning either in the form of a declaration of war or in the form of an ultimatum with a conditional declaration of war had attempted a landing on the coast of Malaya and bombed Singapore and Hong Kong.

“In view of these wanton acts of unprovoked aggression committed in flagrant violation of international law and particularly of Article 1 of the Third Hague Convention12 relative to the opening of Hostilities to which both Japan and the United Kingdom are parties, I have the honor to inform the Imperial Japanese Government in the name of His Majesty’s Government in the United Kingdom that a state of war exists between the two countries.”