From: Washington (Nomura)
November 18, 1941
#1134 (Part 1 of 2) [a]
Re my #1131 [b].
In our conversations of today, as a practical means of alleviating the ever worsening front with which we are faced and to quiet the fearful situation, as well as, to bring about a return to the situation existing before the application of the freezing legislation, we suggested the evacuation of Japanese troops stationed in the southern part of French Indo-China.
HULL, showing considerable reluctance replied, "After Japan has clearly demonstrated her intentions to be peaceful I will confer with Britain, the Netherlands and other interested powers."
In the past it would seem that the greatest stumbling block for the American authorities was the question of our troops of occupation in China. Recently, however, the United States, what with her internal situation and, especially insofar as it concerns the revision of the Neutrality Agreement, her increasing involvement in the war in the Atlantic, seems to have undergone a change. She is now, rather, exhibiting a tendency to lay more emphasis on Japan's peace plans insofar as they pertain to the Tri-Partite Alliance. With regard to other questions, too, it seems very clear that they are of a mind to bring about a compromise after making sure of our peaceful intentions. In view of these circumstances, as a result of our deliberations of successive days it would seem that should we present Proposal "B" immediately, an understanding would be more difficult to realize than if we went on with our discussions of Proposal "A". Therefore, looking at it from a practical point of view, we are of the opinion that prior to presenting of Proposal "B" it would be more advisable to reach a practical settlement, principally on the questions of the acquisition of goods and the cancellation of the freezing legislation mentioned in Proposal "B" and then to try to proceed with the solution of other questions on this basis. Unless we follow this course we are convinced that an immediate solution will be extremely difficult.
Army 25090 Trans. 11/21/41 (2)
[a] Part 2 in S.I.S. #25243.
[b] See S.I.S. #25086.
(18 November-Probable date of drafting)
#1134 (Pt 2 of 2) (This message should probably be #1128).
It is true that the Konoye government reiterated its approval of the government's statement referred to here. However, that statement carried several supplementary notes, some of which apparently aroused the suspicion of the United States. These supplementary notes were of such character that even if they are not written down in black and white, they would naturally become applicable under the rights of self-defense in the event that to do so becomes necessary.
Please therefore issue a statement as that of the new government's, in which there are no provisional notes, and which express our peaceful policies.
The United States, of course, has indicated clearly that she is not interested in mere promises as much as she is in putting said promises in effect. It is necessary, therefore, for us to be prepared to withdraw our troops as soon as the freezing order is rescinded and materials are made available to us.
Please advise us as to your intentions after perusing my message #1133*. (Hull to]d me that he would be glad to see me at any time. However, the day after tomorrow, the 20th, is a major holiday here, so if you could make it possible for me to make a reply tomorrow, it would be very convenient for me.)
JD-1: 6760 (D) Navy Trans. 11-24-41 (2)
*JD-1: 6759 (S.I.S. #25242).
(EXHIBITS OF JOINT COMMITTEE , EXHIBIT NO. 1 INTERCEPTED DIPLOMATIC MESSAGES SENT BY THE JAPANESE GOVERNMENT BETWEEN JULY l AND DECEMBER 8, 1941)