Urging the United States to fight it necessary to stop Japanese aggression towards the south, American Defense, Harvard Group yesterday adopted a resolution which stated that American security "depends upon successful resistance to the Japanese thrust."
The first statement in which the Faculty group has ever gone on record as admitting that military participation might be advisable, yesterday's resolution says, "the actual use of armed force may well be unnecessary if it is now made unmistakably clear to Japan that force will be used if necessary."
Yesterday's resolution is the latest step in the Faculty group's gradual swing towards a stand that war may be necessary and advisable. It brought American Defense, Harvard Group very close to President Conant's position that military participation in the East or in the West should be regarded as a question of military strategy.
Although the group has made no public statement as to whether it would favor sending troops abroad if the defeat of Hitler requires it, prominent members in the organization admit that they are leaning strongly in that direction.
The resolution adopted by an open meeting of the Group yesterday follows in full:
(1) The major objective of present American policy in Asia is not the protection of American commercial or territorial interests. It is to prevent the spread of totalitarian conquest by the Asiatic member of the Axis. A Japanese conquest of Malaya and the Netherlands East Indies would immeasurably increase the danger of world dominance by the Axis powers. The security of the United States, of the entire British Commonwealth, and of all other democracies de- pends upon successful resistance to the Japanese thrust.
(2) More specifically, Japanese seizure of Singapore and the Netherlands East Indies would:
a. Deprive the United States and Great Britain of vital supplies and give Japan possession of raw materials without which she cannot sustain a prolonged war effort.
b. Sever or seriously impair American and British communications with Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific.
c. Cut off Australian and New Zealand support to British war effort and seriously threaten the British position in the Mediterranean.
d. Render almost certain the destruction of free China; the subjugation of the Philippine Commonwealth and all Malaysia; and thereby the subjection of vast and helpless populations in the Far East to Japanese domination.
(3) Thus, Japanese success would insure Axis domination over Asia, Australasia, and the entire western Pacific and would contribute directly to Axis success in Europe and the Atlantic as well.
(4) We favor action by the United States Government designed to make clear to Japan that the United States will tolerate no further aggressive moves to the south. The actual use of armed force may well be unnecessary if it is now made unmistakably clear to Japan that force will be used if necessary