Volume 5 1936~1939

Doc No.

No. 98 NAI 2003/17/181

Confidential report from John W. Dulanty to Joseph P. Walshe (Dublin)
(No. 43) (Secret)

London, 30 October 1937

Last evening Mr. Malcolm MacDonald asked me to see him for a few minutes. I accordingly went to the Dominions Office.

Mr. MacDonald said that he would like me to explain to the President that owing to his being somewhat suddenly included in the British Delegation to the Nine Power Conference1 he had been compelled to put aside the work he had been doing on the question of the relations between our two countries. He said he was much disappointed at this interruption. The President, he said, would probably be thinking that it is now some time since our last conversation and that some word from him, Mr. MacDonald, was now due if not overdue. He assured me that the moment he was free from the Nine Power Conference he would resume without delay his work which had been unavoidably interrupted.

At the conclusion of his interview with the President in the Grosvenor Hotel on the last occasion2 Mr. MacDonald I feel sure had the definite intention of putting forward proposals after the necessary discussion with the United Kingdom Cabinet. He said to me yesterday, however, that he was not sure whether there would be any proposals to put forward or not. There might be proposals he said but on the other hand there was the equal probability that his colleagues would decide to let matters remain as they were.

[signed] J.W. Dulanty
High Commissioner

1 On 7 July 1937 Japanese troops clashed with Chinese forces near Beijing. The fighting quickly spread to other parts China. In a further incident, the killing of two Japanese marines at a Chinese military airfield near Shanghai resulted in a Japanese invasion of the city on 11 August 1937, As a result of an appeal made to the League of Nations by the Chinese government in September 1937, the signatory states of the Nine-Power Treaty of 6 February 1922 (under which Britain, France, Italy, Japan, Portugal, and the United States signed two treaties which guaranteed the territorial integrity and administrative independence of China), with the exception of Japan, met in Brussels on 3 to 24 November 1937 to begin negotiations to end the war in China. Without Japanese participation, the talks collapsed.

2 See documents Nos 3, 7 and 8.