740.0011 Pacific War/767: Telegram

The Ambassador in Cuba ( Messersmith ) to the Secretary of State

195. Reference the Department’s circular telegram of December 7, 10 p.m. I called on the Minister of State44a at noon today and conveyed to him the oral communication as instructed.

The Minister stated that the Cuban Government considered the dastardly and unprovoked attack made by the Japanese armed forces on our territory and people as an attack against Cuba and as against every one of the American states.

The Cuban Government considered the unprovoked attack on us by Japan as calling for an immediate declaration of war on the part of Cuba against Japan. While this was Cuba’s obligation under the inter-American agreements, particularly that of Habana, the Government of Cuba because of its traditional relationships of close amity and cooperation with the United States would proceed with the declaration of war even if such conventions did not exist.

The President of Cuba was preparing today a message to the Congress and the declaration of war would be voted either today or tomorrow by the Congress.45

The Minister went on to say that the Council of Ministers had also decided to send in the name of the Cuban Government to President Roosevelt a message pledging the full support of Cuba to the United States in every degree and manner in her power.

He further stated that the Council of Ministers had decided to send in the name of the Cuban Government a message to the Governments of the other American republics urging that immediate steps be taken by all to show the complete solidarity of the continent and complete cooperation with the United States.

It is likely that the actual declaration of war will not be voted by the Congress until tomorrow as the message and other documents are in preparation. The Minister informed me however that the passports of the Japanese Chargé and staff were already under preparation.

There is no question that the Government’s action in calling for a declaration of war has the support of all parties and all sectors of the Cuban population.

Messersmith
  1. José M. Cortina.
  2. Cuba declared war on Japan on December 9, 1941, and on Germany and Italy December 11, 1941.