179. Telegram From the Assistant Secretary of State for Far Eastern Affairs (Parsons) to the Department of State 0

Delto 1. Tokyo eyes only for Ambassador. Department eyes only Acting Secretary. From Goodpaster and Parsons. Embassy telegram 4143.2 You may tell Kishi that President is deeply appreciative his action and that of his Govt in undertaking thorough reassessment political and security situation before making his decision. President views question in terms whether or not visit will advance friendship and partnership two peoples and will view Kishi’s recommendation in this light. In view repercussions of decision including broad effect on Japan’s orientation and on parliamentary democracy there, he of course hopes reassessment will result in adhering to schedule. As you no doubt appreciate repercussions are of most serious nature for us also in view (1) inevitable world wide bloc exploitation of a second frustration of President’s travel plans3 and (2) danger that in FE particularly but also elsewhere confidence in US ability counter Communist designs effectively may be diminished.

If Kishi recommends trip proceed on schedule, it would seem to us advantageous and in fact probably necessary for new and tougher orders to police to be issued now rather than to allow demonstrators flushed with success to run wild until President’s arrival. Recognize this is primarily Kishi’s business but for Japanese Govt to assert itself only when American President arrives may turn reaction against US and may be too late to be effective anyway. At same time we would hope Govt would take other positive measures of leadership which would leave no one in doubt trip will take place and nothing which interferes with its success will be tolerated.

If Kishi decides against visit at this time, it is not possible to make firm commitment now for alternate date. As Secretary said over phone and as you told Kishi pursuant Deptel 29514 President’s schedule for the remaining months of his term is very crowded and his plans contain, at this moment no provision for trip to Far East at later date. Moreover, given uncertainties of Japanese situation including question of Kishi’s [Page 356] own tenure it may not be desirable at this time to set precise date even if this were possible.

As we see it, if change is to be made, Japanese must take initiative regarding substance of announcement as they are in best position determine how to minimize damage to (1) completion ratification of treaty; (2) Kishi and conservatives and (3) Japan’s international position including most importantly relations with US. We therefore suggest you inform Kishi that if he decides visit should not take place he should at same time advise you how he intends handle announcement. Draft text should be sent us soonest for approval and to facilitate coordinated and simultaneous announcement by party and Dept. In meantime please give us your own recommendations on contingency basis.

Dept has wired Seoul eyes only to draw up alternative contingent schedule.5

Fully appreciate vital importance maintaining public posture that visit going forward subject only Stephens and Hagerty revisions.

Important that party receive Kishi’s evaluation and decision in Manila by Wednesday at latest.

Parsons
  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 711.11–EI/6–1360. Top Secret; Priority. Sent to Tokyo and repeated to the Department.
  2. No time of transmission is on the source text; it was received at the Department of State at 3:13 a.m. June 13.
  3. Document 177.
  4. The first was the collapse of the summit meeting in Paris in mid-May.
  5. Document 174.
  6. After cancellation of the visit to Japan, the President’s itinerary was slightly modified. He stayed in Okinawa an hour longer than originally planned, and from there he flew to Seoul on June 19. (Telegram Delto 11 from USS St. Paul to the Department of State, June 17; Department of State, Central Files, 711.11–EI/6–1760)