Katō Kanji’s appointment to the Washington delegation in September 1921 marks a watershed in his career development and his thinking on the subject of naval arms limitation. By any standards Katō’s naval career so far had been highly successful and his rise extremely rapid. He was seen as a man of considerable talent, destined for the very highest naval posts. Thus far his career, with the possible exception of the Vladivostok episode, had been relatively uncontroversial. He was a well-known and respected figure in military circles at home and abroad but to the general public he was at this time relatively unknown. His participation in the Washington Conference was to bring him national prominence.