WW2 British Memorandum On The London Naval Conference 1936 Publication
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For sale is a Rare Pre WW2 British Memorandum On The London Naval Conference 1936 Publication. Published by his majesties stationary office.The introduction states: “MEMORANDUM ON THE LONDON NAVAL CONFERENCE. DECEMBER 9, 1935, TO MARCH 25, 1936. MARCH 25, UNDER the provisions of the London Naval Treaty, 1930,* the High Contracting Powers agreed to meet in conference in 1935 to frame a new agreement to replace and carry out the purposes of the existing treaty. His Majesty's Government in the United Kingdom therefore initiated early in 1934 the preliminary conversa- tions which experience has shown to be essential to the success of an international conference of this nature. 2. On the 29th December, 1934, notice of termination of the was given by Japan. As the Contracting Powers Washington Treaty was to that Treaty+ had agreed to meet in conference within one year His Majesty's Govern- of the date of such notice of termination, it was, for this reason also. necessary to summon a conference in 1935. ment in the United Kingdom, feeling that as in the Unit as they had taken the initiative in the preparatory conversations they were perhaps under a greater obligation in the matter than other Governments, accordingly issued the necessary invitations. 3. The Conference was opened on Monday, the 9th December, 1935, by the Prime Minister, who stated that the proposals of this country remained the same as those communicated by His Majesty's Government to the Disarmament Conference in July, 1932, and that they attached the greatest importance to a continuation of limitation in both the quantitative and qualitative field. He pointed out that an international agreement on these lines would u undoubtedly lead to great economy in future naval construction throughout the world. He also expressed the hope that, even if the abolition of submarines should prove impossible, the acceptance by France and Italy of the rules laid down in Part IV of the London Naval Treaty, 1930, would be the signal for the acceptance of those rules by all the maritime Powers of the world, and that by this means unrestricted submarine warfare would in future be averted. 4. As regards quantitative limitation, His Majesty's Govern- ment were forced to the conclusion during the preliminary conversa- tions that agreement on any system of limitation based directly on a "ratio" or definite or definite relationship of naval strength, such as that on which the Washington and London Naval Treaties were founded, would prove difficult of attainment. In order to preserve some measure of quantitative limitation they proposed as a "middle way * Cmd. 3758. † Cmd, 2036, that the quantitative side of the Treaty should consist of unilateral and voluntary declarations by each of the signatory Powers limiting its construction over a period of, say, six years. They realised that the degree to which their proposal would effect a quantitative limitation in naval armaments would depend entirely on the spirit in which it was carried out, but they would have been fully prepared to give to such construction figures as might be agreed upon the form of a contractual obligation, if that method of limitation had been acceptable to other Powers. Agreement on any form of quantitative limitation has, however, unfortunately not been possible. 5. At the opening of the Conference Japan tabled her proposal for a Common Upper Limit." After considerable discussion this proposal remained unacceptable to all the other delegations, and to the deep regret of His Majesty's Government Japan withdrew her delegation from the Conference, leaving however observers to watch ab its progress. 6. The United Kingdom proposals mentioned above having also proved unacceptable generally, the further efforts of the Conference were directed to achieving the maximum measure possible of qualita- tive limitation, and to obtaining agreement on provisions for advanced notification of construction or acquisition of war vessels, and to exchange of information on their principal characteristics. The object of this latter provision is to remove one of the most fruitful sources of suspicion between Naval Powers, thus reducing the likelihood of building competition between them. Complete agreement has been reached between the Members of the British Commonwealth of Nations possessing sea-going naval forces, the United States of America and France on these points. Although Italy has found herself unable for the present to associate herself with this agreement, the Italian delegation entered fully into all the discussions, was consulted on all points, and, subject to certain reservations, agreed to the wording of the various reports. 7. As regards qualitative limitation, it will be convenient to place before Parliament a comparison of the aims of His Majesty's l Government with the results actually achieved by the Conference.” This will be sent via Royal Mail 1st class signed for and dispatched within two working days.
Dorset, United Kingdom
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