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“He was amazed at the development of the science of cryptography ever since the war, and took particular pains to tell every member of the Black Chamber that the value of our work to the government could scarcely be overestimated. Washington, he told us, was anxiously looking forward to the part we would play in the Armament Conference” (Herbert O. Yardley in, The American Black Chamber, p.282)

A Deceiving Patriot: The Savior of the Armament Conference

One day, the American Black Chamber deciphered telegram number 813, dated July 15th, 1921, which indicated the opening of a Pacific Conference between the Great Powers and the Far East. This Conference was called by the Japanese Ambassador in London, on behalf of his home government in Tokyo. Below is an excerpt from the telegram between the Japanese Ambassador and his government:

 After months of numerous back and forth communications between the Japanese government and its American ambassadors, a decision regarding their plan for the Armament Conference was made. The following is a telegram from Tokyo to Washington

July 13th, 1921

No. 286

The Japanese Government wishes the subjects of discussion to be limited to the limitation of armaments questions, but in case it is necessary to discuss also Far Eastern and Pacific problems, this discussion should be limited to questions of general principles such as the territorial integrity of China, the open door, equal commercial opportunities, etc., and accomplished facts and questions concerning merely China.

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