Pending Naval Questions

ON DECEMBER 29, 1934, Japan denounced the Five Power Treaty signed at Washington on February 6, 1922, as part of the general Pacific settlement agreed to at that time by the United States, Great Britain, France, Italy and Japan. According to Article XXIII of the Treaty there must be another conference within a year of its denouncement. Unless all parties to that agreement should decide unanimously not to meet, it therefore seems that a conference must be held before the end of the present year. Will this naval conference include other states in addition to the five original signatories to the Five Power Treaty? As such questions are not settled by majority vote, it would seem that one objection would prevent the inclusion of other states. Even so, the fact remains that the political and military status of other countries has changed since the Washington Treaties were signed, and these changes will have to be taken into account.

Three treaties were negotiated at the Washington Conference, and all were tied together for a purpose. This purpose was: one, to promote world peace; two, to promote peace and fair practices in the Far East; three, to provide security in national defense for all the peoples concerned; four, to reduce their military burdens. In a way, the Five Power Treaty is the sanctions clause of the others. Through it the signatory nations can effect the purpose mentioned without employing force, whereas a single nation in order to attain that same purpose almost inevitably would have to resort some day to the use of force. Despite Japan's special geographical location in propinquity to the mainland of Asia, which confers certain advantages and certain disadvantages, and despite the fact that she is acutely susceptible to disturbing events in the Far East, the pertinent question remains: Can one nation act in the rôle of five and still preserve the purpose of the Washington Treaties, which she claims is her purpose, and do it better than if she had remained

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