Editorial Note

On January 10, in a letter to Mr. Dulles, President Truman designated him a Special Representative of the President with the personal rank of Ambassador, and instructed him as to general policy with regard to a Japanese peace treaty and to potential defense arrangements in the Pacific area. For the text of the President’s letter, see enclosure 2 (as annotated) to the letter of January 9 from Secretary of State Dean Acheson to Secretary Marshall, page 788.

There follows that portion of the President’s letter which is most directly relevant to this compilation:

“You should also, in carrying out your discussions, have in mind that it is the policy of the United States Government that the United States will commit substantial armed force to the defense of the island chain of which Japan forms a part, that it desires that Japan should increasingly acquire the ability to defend itself, and that, in order further to implement this policy, the United States Government is willing to make a mutual assistance arrangement among the Pacific island nations (Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Japan, the United States, and perhaps Indonesia) which would have the dual purpose of assuring combined action as between the members to resist aggression from without and also to resist attack by one of the members, e.g. Japan, if Japan should again become aggressive. In connection with this latter point, the United States Government should agree to this course of action only as the other nations accept the general basis on which the United States is prepared to conclude a peace settlement with Japan.

“Your discussions will in no way involve any final commitments by the United States Government, and you will avoid giving any contrary impression.” (694.001/1–1051)