File No. 763.72112/1963

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


3172. Your 2350, October 28.1 Following information communicated verbally by Foreign Office; written answer promised:

Owing to proclamation issued at outbreak of war, military authorities theoretically have power to supersede civil authorities, but, practically, power has been exercised in only few instances and not at all in connection with customs authorities.
In so far as control of use of imported goods is concerned, Government regards enemy’s list of conditional contraband as of no importance.
Receipt and distribution of certain imported food and fodder products may take place only through central organization which distributes to civil parties only, but military authorities have power to requisition against payment anything needed by army or navy.

Chancellor has power to grant exemption from control and distribution and military authorities have power to guarantee in advance freedom from requisition of designated imported consignments in whole or part.

  1. Ante, p. 603.