Lot 56D527

Memorandum by Mr. Robert A. Fearey of the Office of Northeast Asian Affairs


Minutes—Dulles Mission Staff Meeting February 10, 9:30 A. M.

Call on Emperor

Ambassador Dulles said that Mr. Yoshida had informed him at dinner the previous evening that he had had an intimation from the Emperor that he would be very pleased if Ambassador Dulles would call on him. Ambassador Dulles said that he had stalled off the Prime Minister, saying that he would have to refer the question to Washington and was not sure whether a reply could be received in time. He had later telephoned the Department and Mr. Merchant1 had called back saying that it was thought advisable for the call to be made. Ambassador Dulles said that he planned to invite Mrs. Dulles and Ambassador and Mrs. Sebald to accompany him, giving the visit a social cast.

Concluding Press Release

Ambassador Dulles said that at Mr. Yoshida’s request he had agreed, in referring to the continued stationing of U.S. forces in Japan after a treaty, to change the word “retention” to “maintenance”. “Maintenance” [Page 872] seemed to be a middle word close enough to “retention” so that he felt he could make the change on his own authority.2

Conversation with General MacArthur

Ambassador Dulles said that he had had a good talk with General MacArthur the previous evening. The General was very enthusiastic about what the Mission had done and said that if any difficulties should be encountered in the future regarding the Japanese side of the treaty Ambassador Dulles should let him know and he would do all he could to help overcome them. Mr. Johnson said that General MacArthur had told him too that he would back the Mission’s work one hundred percent. Ambassador Dulles also noted that General MacArthur had made quite a bitter attack on the British, saying that they would not let the U.S. make the intended peace with Japan if they could help it.

Ambassador Dulles went on to say that the business of dislodging the occupation (“from villas to barracks”) was going to be a Herculean task. Consequently, the more it was possible to get General MacArthur committed to the treaty and to keep him committed the better. If General MacArthur’s intimates do not put pressure on him to hold off on the treaty it will be the first time in history. General Magruder said that when General MacArthur left following the signing of the treaty his subordinates would be left high and dry.

Japanese Fishing

Ambassador Dulles said that the Department had indicated authorization was being sent to release the fishing letters. He said that there would not be time for this to be done before the Mission’s departure but that Ambassador Sebald could take care of it afterward. It was decided that copies of the letters should be furnished General MacArthur for information.

The Mission’s Work

Ambassador Dulles said that he believed that the Mission had achieved an acceptance of its approach by the Japanese which went beyond formal political acceptance. He expressed appreciation to Ambassador Sebald for the valuable assistance which he had afforded. Ambassador Sebald said that the departure of the Mission could be expected to be followed by a feeling of let-down and anxiety on the [Page 873] part of the Japanese. He expressed the hope that Ambassador Dulles could find ways following his return to Washington to keep Japanese treaty hopes alive and the people buoyed up.

  1. Mr. Merchant was Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs.
  2. In his public statement of February 11, Mr. Dulles said in part: “We have discussed the future security of Japan. On February 2, with the authority of my government, I publicly stated that if desired by Japan, the US would sympathetically consider the maintenance of US armed forces in and about Japan.” Full texts of this statement and that of the Prime Minister released simultaneously are included in telegram 1548 from Tokyo, February 12, not printed. (694.001/2–1251) For Mr. Dulles’ broadcast address of March 1, “Laying Foundations for a Pacific Peace”, see Department of State Bulletin, March 12, 1951, p. 403.