File No. 763.72111/2865

The Secretary to the President ( Tumulty ) to the Secretary of State

Dear Mr. Lansing: I am sending you a self-explanatory letter from the managing editor of the Milwaukee Journal. I should be very glad to help him in the matter, if his request is a proper one, for the Journal has been very friendly to the administration. Won’t you be kind enough to advise me as to what, if anything, can be done?

Sincerely yours,

J. P. Tumulty

The Managing Editor of the MilwaukeeJournal” ( Henry C. Campbell ) to the Secretary to the President ( Tumulty )

Dear Mr Tumulty: The argument is constantly made by those who favor an embargo on arms and ammunition that all the other neutral nations in the world have prohibited export trade in this kind of material. For instance, in an article sent out from Germany, John L. Stoddard, the noted traveler and lecturer, makes the statement that “at this time every neutral country except the United States has placed an embargo on munitions of war.” We have just received a communication from a pro-German sympathizer, the latest one of a number of similar letters, which makes the same statement. It is very important that the truth in regard to what other neutral nations have done in this respect be made known. We need this information here and we need it quite urgently, and, as a result of a talk with Mr. Nieman, I am going to take the liberty of asking you to help us get the facts. We should like to have somebody who understands the situation thoroughly and who will be accurate, compile this information for us and we would like to have you select somebody for this purpose. We shall, of course, be glad to pay him for his services. Some bright, reliable young man connected with the Department of State might be just the man to do the work. The points that we should particularly like to cover are as follows:

What neutral nations, if any, have declared embargoes on arms and ammunition?
Which of these nations, if any, manufacture arms and ammunition on such a scale as to constitute more than a negligible factor in supplying the belligerents?
Which of these nations, if any, were led to declare embargoes through fear that developments might make it necessary for them to retain this war material for their own use?
Which of these nations, if any, were led to declare embargoes through fear of incurring the enmity of more powerful neighbors?
Have any of these nations taken the ground that supplying arms and ammunition to belligerents would be unneutral?

This and other essential information on the subject is undoubtedly in the possession of the Department of State and I can think of no other place where it can be obtained. It is of extreme importance in our opinion for us to get this information. We need it exceedingly. This is our excuse of going directly to you for help in getting it.

Let me assure you in the most positive terms that whatever you may do to aid us will be kept strictly to ourselves and that in case there is any objection to our stating that the data is compiled from the records of the Department of State, we agree and promise not to mention that Department in connection with the matter.

May I express the hope that you will kindly give this request your prompt attention and earnest consideration? I trust that you will realize that we know whereof we speak when we say that it is a matter of very great and urgent importance.

Yours very truly,

Harry C. Campbell