159 Mr F. K. Officer, Charge' d'Affaires in Japan, to Department of External Affairs

Cablegram 527 TOKYO, 4 December 1941, 6.16 p.m.

IMMEDIATE SECRET

My telegram 525. [1]

Tone of press threatening. A.B.C.D. encirclement [2] is declared to have developed into a 'positive offensive against Japan' in spite of 'Japan's sincere efforts in the cause of peace'. Great attention to the position of Siam which Australian troops are described as prepared to invade. Considerable space given to the news of Cabinet meetings in Australia etc. Reported that Australian attitude has become extremely anti-Japanese and that Australia is collaborating close[ly] in anti-Japanese movements.

It seems that the Japanese public are being prepared for action either to defend Thailand against British aggression or to anticipate further A.B.C.D. anti-Japanese actions. Understand navy show considerable concern at arrival of British ships in Singapore. This may necessitate .number of alterations of dispositions. Although strong cruiser and destroyer force is reported in Southern waters, fleet is believed to be still in inland sea.

OFFICER

1 Dispatched 4 December. On file AA : A1608, A41/1/1, xxv.

2 See Document 44, note 9.

[AA : A981, JAPAN 185B, iii]