This essay presents a microhistory of U.S.-Japanese relations during the years of the Allied Occupation (1945–1952), describing how policies the United States enacted in the context of Cold War era national security concerns negatively affected the experiences of Japanese scientists. The Red Scare of the McCarthy Era ran along parallel tracks in the United States and Japan, and during those years, Japanese scientists—especially physicists—were the targets of surveillance and intense scrutiny, initially for fear they might abet diehard militarists in exacting revenge for the war, but later out of concern that they would pass “atomic secrets” to Communist nations. In the agenda to reform Japan, a “schizophrenic” science policy emerged, where, on the one hand, U.S. Occupation authorities under the Economic and Scientific Section assisted in the reconstruction of science institutions in Japan and facilitated international outreach, while on the other, the Civil Intelligence Division (G-2) frequently obstructed these efforts, as it imposed a regime of surveillance and penalties against those whom it suspected of being Communists or left-wing sympathizers. Toward this end, U.S. Occupation officials used travel visas as both a carrot and stick to influence the political behavior of Japanese scientists with mixed outcomes.
In 1955, Jiang Tingfu, representing the Republic of China (roc), vetoed Mongolia’s entry into the United Nations. In the 26 years the roc represented China in the United Nations, it only cast this one veto. The roc’s veto was a contentious move because Taipei had recognized Mongolia as a sovereign state in 1946. A majority of the world body, including the United States, favored Mongolia’s admission as part of a deal to end the international organization’s deadlocked-admissions problem. The roc’s veto placed it not only in opposition to the United Nations but also its primary benefactor. This article describes the public and private discourse surrounding this event to analyze how roc representatives portrayed the veto and what they thought Mongolian admission to the United Nations represented. It also examines international reactions to Taipei’s claims and veto. It argues that in 1955 Mongolia became a synecdoche for all of China that Taipei claimed to represent, and therefore roc representatives could not acknowledge it as a sovereign state.