From: Washington (Nomura)
13 October 1941
#941 (In 6 parts, Part 4 only available).
5. Of the three points, please be advised of the matter pertaining to withdrawing or stationing of our troops in China, by my previous report.
6. Wakasugi, therefore, said that in the final analysis, the stumbling block lies in the fact that whereas the United States is interested in agreeing upon basic principles first, Japan is insisting that the matter of primary importance is the clearing up of the outstanding differences first and then to discuss the generalities such as basic principles, etc. The truth of the matter is, Wakasugi continued, it is indeed rarely that a basic principle can be carried as such to any satisfactory degree. Moreover, he pointed out, without agreements or concrete factors, an agreement on principle is without meaning.
To this, the Undersecretary said that the basic principle should first be agreed upon, after which the actual problems can be fitted to it for individual agreements * * * (2 lines missed) * * * (Wakasugi pointed out that) our proposal of 6 September expressed a willingness to sacrifice a practically unanimous desire of the people of Japan for a northward and/or southward military move, for the sake of an adjusted relationship with the United States. This was indeed a bold stroke and probably one which a subsequent cabinet, regardless of its nature, would not dare to duplicate.
In view of this daring step, wouldn't the United States be willing to display some boldness in behalf of great statesmanship?, Wakasugi asked.
The Undersecretary said that he fully appreciated our moves and that the United States felt considerable encouragement therefrom. However, the United States has experienced disappointing reverses he said, pointing to the Japanese occupation of French Indo-China, even after matters had progressed to the point of the United States submitting the 21 June proposal.
Wakasugi, therefore, pointed out that the occupation of French Indo-China had a direct bearing on the China incident. He explained that, with a view to our security, we took this step with the agreement of the Government of France.
JD-1: 5967 (D) Navy Trans. 10-21-41 (2)
(EXHIBITS OF JOINT COMMITTEE , EXHIBIT NO. 1 INTERCEPTED DIPLOMATIC MESSAGES SENT BY THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT BETWEEN JULY l AND DECEMBER 8, 1941)