Immediately following the “conversation” is the principal document in the dossier. This is nothing less than an exhaustive Memorandum, divided into two sections, containing the policy advocated by the Japanese secret society, called the Black Dragon Society, which is said to have assumed that name on account of the members (military officers) having studied the situation in the Heilungchiang (or “Black Dragon”) province of Manchuria. The memorandum is the most remarkable document dealing with the Far East which has come to light since the famous Cassini Convention was published in 1896. Written presumably late in the autumn of 1914 and immediately presented to the Japanese Government, it may undoubtedly be called the fulminate which exploded the Japanese mine of the 18th January, 1915. It shows such sound knowledge of world-conditions, and is so scientific in its detachment that little doubt can exist that distinguished Japanese took part in its drafting. It can therefore be looked upon as a genuine expression of the highly educated Japanese mind, and as such cannot fail to arouse serious misgivings. The first part is a general review of the European War and the Chinese Question: the second is concerned with the Defensive Alliance between China and Japan, which is looked upon as the one goal of all Japanese Diplomacy.
PART I. THE EUROPEAN WAR AND THE CHINESE QUESTION
The present gigantic struggle in Europe has no parallel in history. Not only will the equilibrium of Europe be affected and its effect felt all over the globe, but its results will create a New Era in the political and social world. Therefore, whether or not the Imperial Japanese Government can settle the Far Eastern Question and bring to realization our great Imperial policy depends on our being able to skilfully avail ourselves of the world’s general trend of affairs so as to extend our influence and to decide upon a course of action towards China which shall be practical in execution. If our authorities and people view the present European War with indifference and without deep concern, merely devoting their attention to the attack on Kiaochow, neglecting the larger issues of the war, they will have brought to nought our great Imperial policy, and committed a blunder greater than which it can not be conceived. We are constrained to submit this statement of policy for the consideration of our authorities, not because we are fond of argument but because we are deeply anxious for our national welfare.
No one at present can foretell the outcome of the European War. If the Allies meet with reverses and victory shall crown the arms of the Germans and Austrians, German militarism will undoubtedly dominate the European Continent and extend southward and eastward to other parts of the world. Should such a state of affairs happen to take place the consequences resulting therefrom will be