740.0011 European War 1939/14615
Statement Handed by the Ambassador in Japan (Grew) to Mr. Tomohiko Ushiba, Private Secretary of the Japanese Prime Minister (Prince Konoye)64
From a variety of sources reports are reaching the Government of the United States that it is the intention of the Japanese Government to enter upon hostilities against the Soviet Union.
As is well known to the Japanese Government, the maintenance and preservation of peace in the area of the Pacific has been the earnest desire of the American Government, which has contributed its greatest efforts to the achievement of that high purpose.
From statements made in recent months by the Japanese Ambassador in Washington, Admiral Nomura, to the Secretary of State, Mr. Hull, in the course of conversations between them, as well as from the utterances of responsible Japanese officials, the Government of the United States has derived the hope that it was also the desire of the Government of Japan to maintain and preserve peace in the area of the Pacific. The reports which are now reaching the American Government are so completely contrary to those statements and utterances that the Government of the United States finds it very difficult to believe in the truth of those reports.
Should Japan enter upon a course of military aggression and conquest it stands to reason that such action would render illusory the cherished hope of the American Government, which it understood was shared by the Japanese Government, that peace in the Pacific area, far from being further upset, might now indeed be strengthened and made more secure.
It is the earnest hope of the Government of the United States that the reports of Japan's decision to enter upon hostilities against the Soviet Union are not based upon fact, and an assurance to that effect from His Excellency the Prime Minister of Japan would be deeply appreciated by the Government of the United. States.
TOKYO, July 6, 1941.
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64. Message sent on July 4 by the Secretary of State at the specific request of the President for delivery to His Excellency the Prime Minister of Japan, Prince Fumimaro Konoye.