Courtesy Reuters

The Aims of Japan

IT IS with considerable diffidence that I venture to present briefly my views concerning Japan and her aims, for I am not at all certain that I can say anything which has not already been said many times. I do, however, welcome an opportunity of addressing American leaders in the world of thought and diplomacy. I should like to talk to them, as it were, in an informal, heart-to-heart fashion. That will serve best, I believe, the cause of Japanese-American friendship.

I am firmly convinced, as a large number of Japanese are convinced, that friendship between the United States and Japan is essential not only to both countries but to the welfare of the entire world. Perhaps I may be permitted to be somewhat personal. Towards the end of 1929, on my way to the naval conference which was then about to open in London, I spent a few days in Washington, where I had the opportunity of conferring with President Hoover and Secretary Stimson. What was then uppermost in my mind was how to advance Japan's friendly relations with the United States. To that end I considered it to be of the greatest importance that the two countries should come to an understanding on naval questions in advance of the London Conference. It was for that reason that I went to London by way of the United States. I recall with much pleasure and keen appreciation the hearty welcome given to me in Washington, and the friendly spirit in which both the President and the Secretary of State expressed themselves on various questions. Since then, whether as head of the Japanese Government, or as the leader of a political party, or merely as a private citizen, I have always done all I could to promote Japanese-American friendship. Naturally I have followed with constant and careful attention American public opinion towards Japan, as well as Japanese public opinion towards the United States.


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