On June 9, 1937, at the 34th executive meeting of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), held in Warsaw, Japan's bid to host the Winter Games of the V Olympiad in 1940 in Sapporo, on the northernmost island of Hokkaido, was approved unanimously. The almost mystical belief that sports competition could erase international belligerency can be found in a letter written to Baillet-Latour by a South African member of the IOC. He was still optimistic that the war between Japan and a "certain portion of China" would end shortly. The IOC had been kept abreast of the woefully sluggish Japanese preparations for the 1940 Games by Werner Klingeberg, a protege of Carl Diem's, who served as a technical adviser to the Japanese Olympic Organizing Committee. Progress had been impeded by bureaucratic snafus and tepid political and financial backing. Baillet-Latour and Brundage frequently reiterated that sport and politics ought not mix.