November 26, 1941: Washington to Tokyo:

As we have wired you several times, there is hardly any possibility of having them consider our "B" proposal in toto. On the other hand, if we let the situation remain tense as it is now, sorry as we are to say so, the negotiations will inevitably be ruptured, if indeed they may not already be called so. Our failure and humiliation are complete. We might suggest one thing for saving the situation. Although we have grave misgivings, we might propose, first, that President ROOSEVELT wire you that for the sake of posterity he hopes that Japan and the United States will cooperate for the maintenance of peace in the Pacific (just as soon as you wire us what you think of this, we will negotiate for this sort of arrangement with all we have in us), and that you in return reply with a cordial message thereby not only clearing the atmosphere, but also gaining a little time. Considering the possibility that England and the United States are scheming to bring the Netherlands Indies under their protection through military occupation, in order to forestall this, I think we should propose the establishment of neutral nations, including French Indo-China, Netherlands India and Thai.

(As you know, last September President ROOSEVELT proposed the neutrality of French Indo-China and Thai.) We suppose that the rupture of the present negotiations does not necessarily mean war between Japan and the United States. Then we would attack them and a clash with them would be inevitable. Now, the question is whether or not Germany would feel duty bound by the third article of the treaty to help us. We doubt if she would. Again, you must remember that the Sino-Japanese incident would have to wait until the end of this world war before it could possibly be settled. In this telegram we are expressing the last personal opinions we will have to express, so will Your Excellency please be good enough at least to show it to the Ministry of the Navy, if only to him; then we hope that you will wire us back instantly. (Costello II)

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