- Nazi Conspiracy and Aggression
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Partial copy of document 3600-PS
INTERCEPTED DIPLOMATIC MESSAGES SENT BY THE
JAPANESE GOVERNMENT BETWEEN JULY 1
AND DECEMBER 8, 1941
Printed for the Use of the Joint Committee on the
of the Pearl Harbor Attack (79th Congress, 1st Session)
United States Government Printing Office
December 6, 1941
Re 2 of your #1418 a.
1. From the standpoint given in 4 of my #985 b, we would
like to avoid bringing about any situation likely to result
in an armed clash with Soviet Russia until strategic
circumstances permit it; and so get the German Government to
understand this position of ours and negotiate with them so
that at least for the present they would not insist upon
exchanging diplomatic notes on this question.
In doing this, explain to them at considerable length that
insofar as American materials being shipped to Soviet Russia
through any point lying within the scope of our intelligence
are concerned, they are neither of high quality nor of large
quantity, and that in case we start our war with the United
States we will capture all American ships destined for
Soviet Russia. Please endeavor to come to an understanding
on this line.
2. However, should Foreign Minister Ribbentrop insist upon
our giving a guarantee in this matter, since in that case we
shall have no other recourse, make a *** statement to the
effect that we would, as a matter of principle, prevent war
materials from being shipped to the United States to Soviet
Russia via the Japanese waters and get them to agree to a
procedure permitting the addition of a statement to the
effect that so long as strategic reasons continue to make it
necessary for us to keep Soviet Russia from fighting Japan
(what I mean is that we cannot capture Soviet ships), we
cannot carry this out thoroughly.
3. In case the German Government refuses to agree with 1 or
2 and makes their approval of this question absolutely
conditional upon our participation in the war and upon our
concluding a treaty against making a separate peace, we have
no way but to postpone
the conclusion of such a treaty. This point is intended for
you to bear in mind.
4. Concerning our participation in the war and the question
of our promising not to conclude a separate peace, I shall
wire you later.
Trans. 12/8/41 (NR)
a Not available
b Parts 1 and 3, S.I.S. Nos. 25552m 3; Part 2 not
available. Tokyo informs Berlin that there is extreme danger
of war suddenly breaking out between the Anglo-Saxon nations
and Japan and that if Russia joins hands with England and
the United States against her, Japan will turn upon her with
all her might.