794.5/6–2452: Telegram

No. 574
The Ambassador in Japan (Murphy) to the Department of State

top secret

660. Eyes only for Allison. Further to your 540.1 Clark has taken great Top Secret pains to explain that what he has in mind is not a formal written govt-to-govt agreement regarding combined measures for US–Jap defense of Jap. Both he and Hickey state their belief that under present Jap internal conditions achievement formal written agreement not practicable. Clark hopes only for what he calls a verbal green light from Yoshida on the basis of which we cld go ahead and release the heavy equipment which is already here to the Jap. He points to the valuable months which have already been lost from the standpoint of training, organization and equipment of the Jap forces. He described in rather vigorous language the extreme vulnerability of our situation in Jap with forces on a slender battalion basis. If the balloon shld go up tomorrow we cld not hope to make a defense of Hokkaido.

I explained Dept’s point of view on procedure supporting the construction placed on para 1d (1) of President’s memo. Clark said that probably there is misunderstanding of his purpose which is not a formal intergovernmental agreement. I suggested that possibly JCS had presented it to Dept in that form.

I suggested that possibly the best approach wld be to arrange a quiet dinner for Yoshida, Clark and myself at Emb residence where we cld have an informal discussion of the problem and possibly achieve the type of “gentleman’s agreement” which is all Clark believes he needs. To this Clark said he agrees.

Clark seems confident that Joint Chiefs wld authorize release of heavy equipment Jap on this basis. I told him that I had no information from Wash which wld support that view.

When you comment, will you please advise me re policy regarding release of heavy equipment to Jap. If it can be done, it wld [Page 1279] seem to me politically advisable and I think that the timing of it wld be good as Parliament shld adjourn within a few days.