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"THREE weeks ago a member of the United States Senate said publicly that the Japanese had recently made a peace offer, "which would be agreeable to me." He asked* his fellow-senators: "If the Japanese agreed to give up all conquered territory, including Manchuria, would that not be all right? "y These remarks were promptly followed by a categorical denial, by the acting-Secretary of State, that any offer of peace had been received, but the story has lately been revived in another form—that Generalissimo Stalin, neutral in the conflict, is the bearer of a Japanese peace offer to the Potsdam conference. This, too, is denied. .Nevertheless, Japanese newspaper and radio publicity makes it clear that some Japanese, though not willing to surrender unconditionally, are looking for a "way out." The myth of Japanese invincibility has been shattered in a manner which until recently must have' been inconceivable to the people in the Japanese homeland. No propaganda can counter the fact that United States and British fleets, close off the "coast, are repeatedly shelling centres of war production. It would certainly not be surprising if in these circumstances the Japanese leaders have, in fact, some kind of approach in an endeavour to ascertain what terms the Allies might accept. In this connection some importance may be attached to the report from Washington that the United States is "giving serious consideration to the definition of 'unconditional surrender,' " and that the Japanese may be told that if they agree to "give up all their stolen territories, and strip themselves of military and industrial capacity to wage future wars," the Allies "will neither invade nor occupy Japan." Most people in the United Nations would say that if these aims can be achieved without invasion, invasion would be pointless; but there is nothing to indicate that the Japanese have yet reached the point of agreeing even to negotiate on such terms. Perhaps the shells and bombs of the Allies, and the printed propaganda, will help them to make up their minds more quickly than is commonly thought to be likely.

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Bibliographic details

JAPANESE AND PEACE TERMS, Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 169, 19 July 1945

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JAPANESE AND PEACE TERMS Auckland Star, Volume LXXVI, Issue 169, 19 July 1945