740.00119 (Potsdam)/5–2446

No. 251
Briefing Book Paper1
top secret

Unconditional Surrender of Japan and Policy Toward Liberated Areas in the Far East in Relation to Unconditional Surrender

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ii. soviet support of the cairo declaration

Minimum objective: To obtain (1) the adherence of the Soviet Government to the Cairo Declaration,…
The adherence of the Soviet Government would give the support of that Government to the important provisions in the Declaration … that Korea in due course shall be free and independent.
The agreement would prevent unilateral action by any of the three states to establish a “friendly” government in any of the territories under consideration.
Maximum objective: To obtain an agreement among the three powers that, with China’s anticipated cooperation, they will jointly support whatever measures appear best adapted to develop in Korea a strong, democratic, independent nation.3

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  1. Annex 3 to the attachment to document No. 177.
  2. For the full text of this section of the briefing paper, see document No. 607. For other extracts from this paper, see documents Nos. 574 and 589.
  3. In another version of this paper (undated) in the Department of State files (file No. 740.00119 Council/6–3045), the following language is used with respect to Korea:

    “It is also proposed that [the] three powers enter into an agreement that they will consult in advance among themselves and with China on all matters relating to the implementation of the territorial dispositions provided under that Declaration. Such an agreement would be especially important in reaching a successful solution of the post-war problems of Korea. The interest of the three powers and China in Korea, the probable inability of the Koreans themselves to establish a satisfactory government immediately following liberation, and the commitment as to Korea in the Cairo Declaration make it evident that it would be to the interest of each of the States concerned that they consult among themselves as to the measures which may need to be taken, such as the possible creation of an interim administration in Korea, to assist the Korean people in the early establishment of a free and independent state.”