U.S. Seeks to Shift Canadian Policy on Japan


May 7, 1948

[ Wedding dinner ]

Wedding dinner, Unknown, University of British Columbia Library, Rare Books and Special Collections, BC 2124-25, The diplomatic life was not all meetings and reports. It also included moments of ceremony, such as this wedding about 1945, which Norman handled with aplomb

U – Mr. Lovett [U.S. Under Secretary of State Robert Lovett]

S – Mr. Secretary [U.S. Secretary of State George C. Marshall]

Mr. Butterworth and I consider that the Department should take advantage of the first opportunity to impress on the Canadians the necessity for a new approach to the questions of occupational policy in Japan and the peace treaty. We believe that there is at present a serious divergence of view between the Canadians and ourselves on the subject, which should be corrected as soon as possible.

I have to be at Kingston, Ontario, on May 31 to address the Canadian National Defence College. On June 3 I am to be at Trenton, Ontario, to attend a meeting of the Permanent Joint Defense Board. This leaves me two free days in Canada, between the two engagements. These two days could profitably be used for a visit to Ottawa and for discussions with Canadian officials on this question.

Approved: [signed L] [signed GCM]
Mr. Lovett The Secretary

In December 1946, under instructions of Secretary Byrnes, I went to Ottawa secretly, in company with General Lincoln, to explain to high Canadian officials, partially on cabinet level, the background of our Russian policy. I understand that this visit was helpful in persuading the Canadians to agree to a further development of the defense arrangements under the Ogdensburg Agreement, and in making them feel that we were taking them into our confidence generally. If the occasion develops, as I think it may, I would like authorization to talk with them along similar lines on this occasion.

Approved: [signed L] [signed GCM]
Mr. Lovett The Secretary

If you approve, I recommend that the attached message be sent to the Ambassador at Ottawa.

George F. Kennan

Source: US National Archives and Records Administration, Occupation of Japan, Part 2, US Allied Policy, 1945-1952, File 3-H-21, George F. Kennan, U.S. Seeks to Shift Canadian Policy on Japan, May 7, 1948

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