740.00119 P.W./9–2644

Memorandum by the Chief of the Division of British Commonwealth Affairs (Hickerson) to Admiral William D. Leahy, Chief of Staff to the Commander-in-Chief of the United States Army and Navy

The Department’s memorandum of October 3, 194469 transmitted for the information of the United States Joint Chiefs of Staff certain papers concerning a Japanese peace feeler received by the British Government through the Swedish Government.

Word has now been received from the British Government that the British Minister at Stockholm was instructed on September 29 to advise the Swedish Minister for Foreign Affairs that the British Government was not prepared to return any reply to indirect approaches by the Japanese Government. On the same day the British Minister at Moscow was instructed to inform the Soviet Government confidentially of the information received from the Swedish Foreign Minister and of the British reply.

On October 1 the Secretary General of the Swedish Foreign Office advised the British Minister in Stockholm that he would telegraph the Swedish Minister in Tokyo that it was known from experience that the British Government would not answer such indirect approaches and that the Swedish Government had therefore thought it useless to pass on the message to the British Government. The Secretary General also stated that a new telegram had been received from the Swedish Minister in Tokyo stating that he had been advised that the Japanese Foreign Minister was himself preparing to approach the British Government.

J[ohn] D. H[ickerson]
  1. Not printed.