Memorandum by the Assistant Secretary of State for Occupied Areas (Saltzman) to the United States Representative on the Far Eastern Commission (McCoy)
Subject: Trial of Japanese War Criminals (FEC–314 Series)
In further reference to my memorandum of January 12, 1949 on the above subject, you are now requested to withdraw the U.S. suggestion authorized therein, and formally proposed by the U.S. Representative at the meeting of Committee #5 on the same day, to the effect that the entire paper FEC–314/4 be recast in the form of a policy decision. You are hereby authorized to support the Indian suggestion made at the same meeting, that the first half of the paper only be adopted as a policy decision, the second half to be left on the agenda of Committee #5 for future consideration at the request of any government.
You should continue to oppose the complete withdrawal of the paper.
If a question is raised again as to the nature of the Eighth Army tribunals in Japan, you should reply that, since your Government has withdrawn its support for the inclusion of Part 2 of the paper in the policy decision, you are without final instructions as to your Government’s position in the matter.
In reply to the questions raised by the New Zealand member of Committee #5 on January 12, you are authorized to make the following statement:
“As of February 4, 1949 Class A trials have been terminated, there being no other Class A suspects in custody, nor any whose apprehension is contemplated. The release of the former A suspects in December [Page 659]was unconditional. The IMTFE has not been formally dissolved. The action of SCAP in releasing the A suspects does not of course preclude the theoretical possibility of initiating future trials if further evidence is uncovered.”
If the question is raised again as to whether a policy decision terminating B and C trials in Japan would bar requests for the extradition of B and C war criminals, you may state the view of your Government that it would not have such an effect.
You may state, if the occasion arises, that SCAP has practically completed investigation activity in respect to war criminals, and that it is anticipated that all trials in Japan will be terminated by April 30, 1949, except for the apprehension of some of the 18 B suspects still being sought.