Alliance in Doubt
Ralph D. Sawyer on Chinese Warfare: The Paradox of the Unlearned Lesson. "From any reasonable perspective Chinas continuity has been cultural rather than political, its heritage throughout one of incessant conflict as different peoples, states, and popular movements fought to control its populace and resources."
Minxin Pei asks, Is China Unstable? "China... will face rising instability if the regime fails to undertake significant political reform in the next decade."
Carl Fritz on China in 1945: One Man's Experience. "My unit was an air service group, and when the war ended members of the unit were widely scattered all over China."
Thomas D. Grant on Taiwan Trouble. "Taiwan had almost all the traits of a separate state, except that it never claimed to be a separate state."
Joseph J. Borich on US-China Relations: Springtime Ice Beginning to Melt. "Since mid-June, there have been several signs that bilateral relations may be gradually improving."
Other articles in this issue:
David Brown on policy implicataions for the US one year after the outbreak of the financial crisis in Southeast Asia:
Other recent articles in American Diplomacy:
Walter A. McDougall, in Religion in Diplomatic History, took a different look at the Westphalian system of nation-states and the role played by religion: "Americans have been prone to justify their behavior abroad in Protestant Christian terms, however much they may disagree about what constitutes right and wrong." [Summer 1999]
Elsewhere in this issue:
|The bulk of the American public paid little attention to the new treaty, but the attentive, interested section of the populace was generally quite supportive of the new agreement. The editors of the Los Angeles Times argued, Terms of the treaty formalize the entrance of the two nations into a new era of co-operation, recognizing not only their common stake in free world security, but also the need of joint economic efforts. The editorial board of the New York Herald Tribune wrote, The essential point, however, recognizes that the destinies of the United States and Japan are bound up inextricably together in the Far East. The official editorial position of the Hearst newspaper chain was that the United States will be stronger for having Japan as a voluntary ally in the far east instead of an occupied nation. All the nations of the west will benefit from the change, and so will the general cause of friendship among nations. Various publications across the country agreed, citing the agreement as an important sign that the bilateral relationship between the two nations had entered a new phase.11|
More importantly, reaction in the Senate suggested that the administration would have little problem in getting the new treaty ratified. In a summary of the new agreement that went to members of the Foreign Relations Committee, a staff member described the treaty as defensive" in character. It has been opposed most forciblyat moments hystericallyby the Sino-Soviet bloc because it will serve to strengthen Japans security by discouraging aggressive action against Japan. As one of the four great industrial complexes in the world, Japan and her vigorous, enterprising people represent a great prize; none perhaps ranks higher on our adversaries list, certainly none in Asia. In another memo, a congressional analyst noted that the new agreement was important mainly as a political instrument. The new treaty formalizes the fact of Japans rebirth as a sovereign nation. This acknowledgement is found in the tone of the preamble, which brings Japan into alliance with the United States as an equal partner. Both studies agreed that the United States had an interest in offering this status to the Japanese. The old treaty had become a severe political liability, and was making our countrys position in Japan extremely difficult. The new treaty is fair, unburdensome. The Status of Forces agreement was also revised, making it similar to others signed by representatives of the United States. In general, the new Administrative Agreement is closer in spirit to the Status of Forces agreement with the NATO countries, which was ratified by the Senate in 1953.12
The Foreign Relations Committee staff favored ratification even though in doing so they directly challenged the view of some Senators. Russell Long, the Louisiana Democrat, complained that that the treaty was unequal, requiring the United States to come to the assistance of Japan without any reciprocal commitment. This is not realistic, a staff study declared. If the U.S. is attacked, it is likely that a general nuclear conflict will result. This is the war that both the Soviets and ourselves regard as inadmissible. If it should occur, Japans assistance, or lack of it, would be completely irrelevant.13
Japanese bitterly debate treaty ratification
While the treaty faced no real problems in ratification in the United States, such was not the case in Japan. The pact, despite the American concessions, was extremely unpopular among the political left because it perpetuated the alliance with the United States. Despite representing about a third of the electorate, the opposition parties were never much of a force in Japanese politics due to deep internal divisions. Almost all Japanese to the left of the political center agreed that the treaty should be opposed and organized the Peoples Council for Preventing Revision of the Security Treaty (Ampo Jyaku Kaitei Soshi Kokumin Kaigi). The membership of the Peoples Council included the socialist parties, labor unions, and the communist party, and was, up to that time, the closest thing to a united front that postwar Japan had seen. Differences and divisions remained among the member organizations, limiting the effectiveness of the Peoples Council. Nevertheless, the debate in Tokyo over ratification of the treaty was extremely bitter. One member of the Diet circulated before and after photos of Kishi as a member of the Tojo cabinet and as a prisoner during the occupation. Public interest in the treaty issue was extensive and the media provided intense coverage. The LDP had the votes in the Diet to force the treaty through, even though such action would have run counter to elements of Japanese culture that encouraged consensus.
Far more important, many faction leaders in the party had misgivings about Kishis honesty and honor. Since many suspected that he would make some effort to use the treaty to seek an third term as party president, the support that his opponents within the party offered him in confrontations with the left was qualified. The Peoples Council organized a large rally in Tokyo that began on April 26. This date was key, because it was the last day that the Prime Minister could have a vote on the treaty without seeking an extension of the current legislative session. Ratification required a vote in both chambers of the legislature. If the upper chamber refused to act, approval would occur automatically thirty days after the House of Representatives vote. The Diet had to be in session for this authorization, but in this case was set to recess on May 26. The rallies continued to grow in size throughout April and into May as this date neared. An assembly estimated at 600,000 gathered in Tokyo on May 1.
President's proposed trip to Japan questioned
End Notes (Part II)
11. Los Angeles Times, January 21, 1960; New York Herald Tribune, January 20, 1960. The same editorial appeared in Hearst papers on January 20, 1960. This citation is to the issue of the Chicago American for that day. For editorials voicing similar views see The Atlanta Constitution, January 20, 1960; The Washington Daily News, January 18, 20, 1960; St. Louis Globe-Democrat, January 20, 1960; Baltimore Sun, January 20, 1960; Fort Worth Star-Telegram, January 20, 1960; The Washington Post, January 18, 1960; Washington Evening Star, January 18, 1960; New York Herald Tribune, January 18, 1960. For a dissenting voice that saw little new in the treaty and disagreed with the idea that the accord ushered in a new era in U.S.-Japanese relations, see the Chicago Daily News, January 20, 1960. A front page article in the January 19, 1960 issue of The Wall Street Journal also questioned the importance of the new agreement.
12. Summary of Main Points of the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security with Japan, no date; Staff memorandum, Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security Between the United States of America and Japan, no date, envelop 2 of 3, Sen 86 B-B5, box 41, Treaty File, Records of the Committee on Foreign Relations, Records of the U. S. Senate, Record Group 46, U.S. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
13. Summary of Main Points of the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security with Japan, no date, envelop 2 of 3, Sen 86 B-B5, box 41, Treaty File, Records of the Committee on Foreign Relations, Records of the U. S. Senate, Record Group 46, U.S. National Archives, Washington, D.C.
14. Packard, Protest in Tokyo, 82, 105-124, 182-236.
15. Ibid, 237-270.
16. This assessment is based on a sampling of the various newspapers cited in the notes of this paper on key dates throughout the late spring and early summer.
17. Arkansas Gazette, January 31, 1960; Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security with Japan, June 7, 1960, Eighty-Sixth Congress, Second Session, 1960. (Washington, 1960).
18. Ibid, 28; Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security with Japan, June 7, 1960, Executive Sessions of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee (Historical Series) vol. 12, Eighty-Sixth Congress, Second Session, 1960. (Washington, 1982), 410.
19. Ibid, 405-409, 411; The New York Times, June 7, 1960.
20. Memorandum of Telephone Conversation Between President Eisenhower and Secretary of State Herter, June 7, 1960, FRUS, 1958-1960, vol. 18, 327-328.
21. Notes on Legislative Leadership Meeting, June 9, 1960, Whitman File, Legislative Meeting Series, box 3, Papers of Dwight D. Eisenhower, Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library, Abilene, Kansas (Hereafter referred to as DDEL).