740.00116 PW/1–1346: Telegram

The Chargé in the Soviet Union (Kennan) to the Secretary of State

secret
priority

127. ReEmbs 123, Jan 12, 3[1?] p.m. At Lozovski’s invitation I called on him yesterday evening at FornOff.

He referred to our invitation to participate in trial of Japanese war criminals and said that Sov Govt was not adequately informed about this trial. They wished to have copy of indictment and also a list of leading criminals. Furthermore, they were unable to understand position of George [Joseph] B. Keenan, as described to them in Dept’s note of Jan [3?]95 to SovEmb Washington. This note described him, [Page 389]in translation received by FornOff here, as Chief of the International Section of Prosecuting Attorneys. What body was this? By whom established? And who, exactly, was Mr. Keenan? Was he an official of United States Government?

I undertook to obtain this information for him as soon as possible and would appreciate early instructions.

May I point out that Russian interest in details of indictment and of list of criminals is more than formal. Russians will not have failed to note press stories such as one which recently appeared in certain American papers concerning document allegedly published by Konoye’s son on Jap-Russian agreement for division of Asia; and they will no doubt wish to make certain that no such document, or indeed any evidence mentioning Matsuoka’s 1941 Moscow talks96 and resultant Neutrality Pact97 or other Jap-Russian exchanges, is adduced in trial by any party in connection with Jap plans for aggression.

Kennan
  1. See note of December 28, 1945, to the Australian Legation, Foreign Relations, 1945, vol. vi, p. 988.
  2. Yosuke Matsuoka, Japanese Minister for Foreign Affairs, visited Moscow en route to and from his trip to Germany; for reports of his mission, see Foreign Relations, 1941, vol. iv, pp. 915 ff.
  3. Signed at Moscow, April 13, 1941; for text, see Department of State Bulletin, April 29, 1945, p. 811. Cf. telegram 763, April 13, 1941, 11 p.m., from Moscow, Foreign Relations, 1941, vol. iv, p. 944.