File No. 711.0012/531y

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Germany ( Gerard )1


Eighteen treaties providing for investigation in all cases were ratified last Thursday, Netherlands form being one most favored by Senate. Four more signed and will be ratified within few days. British and French treaties agreed upon and will be signed same day, but day cannot be fixed as British treaty is being submitted Colonies for approval. If German Government will authorize its Ambassador to sign similar treaty its ratification can be secured before Congress adjourns. If verbal changes are desired shall be glad to consider them, as we are willing to make any reasonable concession in details provided principles are retained. War makes us especially anxious to negotiate treaties with European countries, so that the treaties will cover any disputes that may arise between us and European governments during war. Possibility of dispute is remote, but still possibility. These treaties provide for investigation in all cases before hostilities begin. It would be a great triumph in diplomacy if it could be so arranged that treaty with Germany could be signed on same day as British and French, or before or after. If a favorable opportunity presents itself, please bring matter to attention Foreign Office.

  1. The same, mutatis mutandis, except the last two sentences, to the Ambassador in Austria-Hungary and the Ministers in Belgium, Spain, and Greece.