1 SEPTEMBER 1939, Page 2

Japan's Anxieties

In Japan the Soviet-German Pact has led directly to the fall of Baron Hiranuma's Cabinet, including the Foreign Minister, M. Arita, the chief architect of the Anti- Comintern alliance. General Abe, the new Prime Minister, is a nonentity whose strongest qualification for the post is that he is credited with no fixed views on the direc- tion or the future of Japanese foreign policy ; he has decided to be his own Foreign Minister, at present at any rate. For Japan the Soviet-German rapproche- ment has been disastrous. She is left alone to face possible attack from Russia in China, the renewed hopes of the Chinese themselves, and the hostility of Great Britain and the United States to " the new order in Eastern Asia.' Her immediate recourse is likely to be to a policy of isola- tion, in the hope that time may offer her some escape from her difficulties ; for the outbreak of war in Europe would not be sufficient to relieve her of anxiety. Even the army. which has so firmly demanded a closer alliance with Ger- many, now prefers isolation to that. Apart from practical difficulties, Japan feels bitterly the sense of Germany's treachery ; though the Soviet-German negotiations were in progress for many months, Germany gave Japan, her ally, no intimation of the change which so vitally affects, and darkens, her future. The desire for some accommodation with the democracies will be strong, but that cannot happen at the expense of China.