ON SEPTEMBER 18, 1931 Japan launched an attack on Manchuria. Within a few days Japanese armed forces had occupied several strategic points in South Manchuria.
The United States Minister to China reported to Secretary of State Stimson, in a telegram dated September 22, his opinion that this was "an aggressive act by Japan", apparently long-planned, and carefully and systematically put into effect. Minister Johnson found no evidence that it was the result of accident or the act of minor and irresponsible officials. He was convinced that the Japanese military operation in Manchuria "must fall within any definition of war" and that this act of aggression had been deliberately accomplished in "utter and cynical disregard" of Japan's obligations under the Kellogg-Briand Pact of August...TAGGED: World War II