Boycotts and Embargoes

March 17, 1932

Report Outline
The United States and Enforcement of Peace in China
The Boycott as a Weapon of Militarily Weak Nations
The Boycott as an Agency to Enforce Peace
Anti-Japanese Boycott and Embargo Proposals, 1932

The United States and Enforcement of Peace in China

The Military Activity of Japan in Manchuria and at Shanghai and the efforts of the powers to bring hostilities to a halt have focused attention on the world's peace machinery and the means available to enforce existing treaties and covenants. While it never seemed likely that the League of Nations would attempt to apply against Japan the economic sanctions contemplated by Article 16 of the Covenant, there has been advocacy in the United States of a boycott against Japanese goods and of an embargo against the export of arms and ammunition to the Orient. Such proposals have not elicited the support of the administration. Secretary of State Stimson has latterly assumed a leading role in the whole question, however, by enunciating the doctrine that the United States would refuse to recognize any situation or treaty resulting from violation of the Nine-Power Treaty or the Kellogg Pact. This doctrine was incorporated in a resolution approved by the League Assembly, March 11, 1932,

A recommendation that the United States convoke a conference of the signatories of the Kellogg Pact, for the purpose of framing an amendment providing for application of joint measures of non-intercourse against a violator of the pact, was made March 13, 1932, by the Committee on Economic Sanctions, of which President Nicholas Murray Butler of Columbia is chairman. Under the proposed amendment the signatories would be obliged, when hostilities threatened, to call a conference which should decide upon specific measures of non-intercourse designed to keep the peace in the situation under consideration.

The policy of non-intercourse was used by the United States against France and England more than a century ago. In recent times employment of the boycott has been chiefly confined to China and India, where it has been brought to a high degree of effectiveness. Except for pacific blockades, application of economic sanctions on an international basis as a means of enforcing peace has never been attempted.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
Jul. 26, 2002  Japan in Crisis
May 31, 1991  The U.S. And Japan
Apr. 09, 1982  Tensions in U.S.-Japanese Relations
Jul. 01, 1977  Japanese Elections
Mar. 04, 1970  Emergent Japan
Jun. 25, 1969  Okinawa Question
Jan. 05, 1966  Rising Japanese Nationalism
Jun. 02, 1960  Japan: Disturbed Ally
Nov. 18, 1959  Japanese Competition in International Trade
May 11, 1955  Relations With Japan
Nov. 03, 1954  Japan's Economy
Jan. 09, 1952  Trade with Japan
Feb. 28, 1951  Japan and Pacific Security
Sep. 19, 1947  Peace with Japan
Aug. 14, 1945  Emperor of Japan
Nov. 03, 1944  Russo-Japanese Relations
Dec. 09, 1939  The United States and Japan's New Order in Asia
Dec. 05, 1938  Japan and the Open Door Policy
Apr. 29, 1935  Japanese Foreign Trade Expansion
May 11, 1934  Japanese Policy in Asia
Oct. 12, 1932  Japanese-American Relations
Mar. 17, 1932  Boycotts and Embargoes
Feb. 10, 1932  Militarism Vs. Liberalism in Japan
Export Sanctions and Restrictions
Import Quotas and Customs