JAPAN: Left Behind

A marine in dress blues ushered five sober-looking Japanese into the crowded auditorium of Tokyo's Dai Ichi Building. Their dark, wrinkled civilian suits looked out of place among the sparkling Navy whites, the trim Army sun tans and Marine blues of the U.S. officers, and the summer furs of their ladies. As former staff officers of the Imperial Navy, the Japanese were official witnesses at the disposition of the remains of its fleet—92 vessels of destroyer size and under, which were to be divided among four victor nations. (Heavier ships and submarines have already been scrapped.)

On the klieg-lighted stage, Vice...

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