The Japanese Minister of
Foreign Affairs (Togo) to the Japanese Ambassador in the Soviet
[Tokyo,] July 17, 1945—5 p.m.
913. Re your telegram No. 1392.1
- In the present situation, strengthening friendly relations with the Soviet Union and, moreover, effectively utilizing the Soviets to terminate the war is difficult. This was clear from the outset but in view of the demands of the times it is essential to accomplish this boldly. Furthermore, for our side it is even difficult merely to prevent the Soviets from taking part in hostilities against Japan, and we must realize that to have them act to our advantage is a prospect hard to achieve. This is as I indicated in my telegram No. 890,2 and the negotiations for strengthening friendly relations between Japan and the Soviet Union constitute the basis on which to invite sincere Soviet mediation for terminating the war. Moreover, it is also considered essential in order to strengthen our stand in negotiations against the United States and Great Britain. Besides, we should not limit ourselves to sounding out the attitude of the Soviets concerning the termination of the war but should also endeavor to induce them to mediate in good faith.
- Not only our High Command but also our Government firmly believes that even now our war potential is still sufficient to deal the enemy a severe blow, but against an enemy who can make repeated attacks we cannot always be completely free from anxiety. In such times, we continue to maintain our war strength; if only the United States and Great Britain would recognize Japan’s honor and existence we would terminate the war and would like to save mankind from the ravages of war, but if the enemy insists on unconditional surrender to the very end, then our country and His Majesty would unanimously resolve to fight a war of resistance to the bitter end. Therefore, inviting the Soviet Union to mediate fairly does not include unconditional surrender; please understand this point in particular.
- The Soviet reply concerning the dispatch of the special envoy should be obtained as soon as possible. It is extremely important to get Soviet approval quickly and I would like you to exert extreme efforts towards this end through Lozovsky.