67. Editorial Note

On August 29, Japanese Foreign Minister Shigemitsu arrived in the United States for discussions with United States officials. During the course of a discussion on August 31 between United States and Japanese officials, including Shigemitsu, Secretary Dulles made the following remarks regarding economic defense policy:

“With respect to trade with Communist China the Secretary said he had the feeling that this was more of a psychological than an economic factor. Japan never had a big trade with China proper, independent of its domination there. Korea and Manchuria were big markets after Japan’s political influence was established there, but in the main China is a poor area and does not have much to export. The general experience of countries that have tried to trade with China is that they get nothing worthwhile except in return for highly strategic goods for which the Communists are willing to make a sacrifice in exchange. The Secretary doubted that a change in the control list would have great economic results. You may say, he added, that if that is so, shouldn’t we modify the list to conform to the European list. The other side of the picture is that it is not easy to make a change unless it is occasioned by some act on the part of the Chinese which seems to call for some recognition on the part of the free nations. The Ambassadorial talks going on in Geneva have so far been unproductive. And at present the United States considers that there should be no relaxation of trade controls. He appreciated that the problem in Japan is partly political rather than economic but believed that Japan should cooperate with the United States because Japan also has a stake. Sooner or later some revision of the export list is inevitable but the time has not yet come.” (Memorandum of conversation by Noel Hemmendinger; Department of State, Central Files, 033.9411/8–3155)