Ramparts of the Pacific

Ramparts of the Pacific

Ramparts of the Pacific

Ramparts of the Pacific

Excerpt

Law-Abiding nations which stay at home and mind their own business do not get into difficulties, but some nations, by their own actions, accomplish their own encirclement.

That, in effect, was the tart comment made one day late in the summer of 1941 by Mr. Cordell Hull, American Secretary of State, when he was asked to reply to charges from Tokyo to the effect that Japan was being slowly strangled by "a vicious chain of encirclement" made up of the United States, Britain, China, and the Dutch in the East Indies.

This "ABCD chain," as it became known within a short time, achieved considerable prominence within a few weeks. The Americans, British, and Dutch froze Japanese credits and assets and suspended all trade transactions with Japan. The Chinese had already been at war with Japan for four years and had long before made effective all possible economic sanctions.

Japan, genuinely alarmed, made clumsy and ineffectual gestures toward appeasing the United States, but it quickly became evident that the parleys would come to nothing and . . .

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