From: Southern California
FOR DIPLOMATIC POUCH ONLY
DELIVER DIRECTLY TO SEC. HULL
FROM: Capt. Smith-Hutton, Military Attache, Tokyo
TO: Sec. Hull
DATE: July 10,1941
I have, in my possesion, convincing evidence of practice raids by Japanese torpedo bombers using aerial torpedoes against capital warship targets in Ariake Bay. I believe these are not, repeat, not defensive in nature as some of the attacks seem to be taking place in depths as shallow as 6-8 fathoms.
From: Adm R. K. Turner, Director of War Plans Division, Navy Department
To: Adm Stark, Chief of Naval Operations
Date: July 19, 1941
Effect of Further Restrictions on Exports.
(a) The most important fields for exercising further restrictions
exports are petroleum products and raw cotton, which accounted 74% and
13%, respectively, of the trade in May, 1941.
(b) It is generally believed that shutting off the American supply of
petroleum will lead promptly to an invasion of the Netherlands East
Indies. While probable, this is not necessarily a sure immediate result.
Japan doubtless knows that wells and machinery probably would be
destroyed. If then engaged in war in Siberia, the necessary force for
southward adventures might not be immediately available. Furthermore,
Japan has oil stocks for about eighteen months' war operations. Export
restrictions of oil by the United States should be accompanied by
similar restrictions by the British and Dutch.
(c) Restrictions on the export of raw cotton would probably be serious
for Japan only if India, Peru, and Brazil should apply the same
restrictions. Cotton stocks in Japan are believed to be rather low at
(d) It will, of course, be recognized that an embargo on exports will
automatically stop imports from Japan.
(e) An embargo on exports will have an immediate severe psychological
reaction in Japan against the United States. It is almost certain to
intensify the determination of those now in power to continue their
present course. Furthermore, it seems certain that, if Japan should then
take military measures against the British and Dutch, she would also
include military action against the Philippines, which would immediately
involve us in a Pacific war. Whether or not such action will be taken
immediately will doubtless depend on Japan's situation at that time with
respect to Siberia.
(f) Additional export restrictions would hamper Japan's war effort, but
not to a very large extent since present restrictions are accomplishing
the same result, except with regard to oil, raw cotton and wood pulp.
Thus, the economic weapon again Japan has largely been lost, and the
effect of complete embargo would be not very great from a practical
6. Effect on the United States of a Loss of Imports From Japan.
(a) As previously mentioned, exports and imports are approaching a
balance. If exports cease, imports will also cease, as Japan would not
have the means to continue her purchases. The same effect would be
produced if we stopped buying from Japan, but attempted to continue our
(b) In 1940, raw silk formed 67% of United States imports from Japan.
Silk is processed here. It is used in industry and for certain
munitions, particularly powderbags. The armed services have large stocks
of raw silk, and could get along without further imports, though silk
substitutes are not entirely satisfactory. Doubtless industry could
manage without silk, although the lack of it would cause a considerable
dislocation of labor now employed in the industry. The effect of
stopping the purchase of silk would also have an adverse psychological
reaction on the part of Japan, though possibly not so great as would an
(c) Stopping other imports from Japan would not cause any great hardship
in the United States, although the general effect on industry would be
(a) Present export restrictions, plus reductions of available ship
tonnage for use in Japanese trade have greatly curtailed both exports
(b) The effect of an embargo would hamper future Japanese war effort,
though not immediately, and not decisively.
(c) An embargo would probably result in a fairly early attack by an on
Malaya and the Netherlands East Indies, and possibly would involve the
United States in early war in the Pacific. If war in the Pacific is to
be accepted by the United States, actions leading up to it should, if
practicable, be postponed until Japan is engaged in a in Siberia. It may
well be that Japan has decided against an early attack on the British
and Dutch, but has decided to occupy Indo-China and to strengthen her
position there, also to attack the Russians Siberia. Should this prove
to be the case, it seems probable that United States could engage in war
in the Atlantic, and that an would not intervene for the time being,
even against the British.
That trade with Japan not be embargoed at this time.
R. K. Turner
< Message edited by Cap Mandrake -- 5/15/2005 9:53:35 PM >