File No. 658.119/127

The Ambassador in Great Britain ( Page) to the Secretary of State


7952. Swedish delegates were received to-day by Allied-American delegates under chairmanship of Lord Robert Cecil. Only business transacted was that chairman, speaking for Allied delegates, requested Swedes to submit memorandum of their desires and of what they were willing to do in return. Another meeting will be held to-morrow when Swedes are expected to present their memorandum.

Marcus Wallenberg head of Swedish delegation last night informally told Cecil that Sweden was willing in principle to agree to our demands regarding reduction of ore export to Germany and on the question of tonnage. But he flatly stated that it would be impossible for Sweden to cease exports of iron ore to Germany altogether and also that Sweden’s most urgent needs were petroleum and [Page 1086] coal. Sweden has heretofore secured a great majority of her coal from Germany and the fact that she is now desirous of securing it from the Allies is taken as a favorable indication. It is anticipated that the Swedes will offer objection to the use of their tonnage in danger zones. It will be pointed out to them that this is exactly where tonnage is needed but it is most desirable to know just how far our Government desires American delegates to press this point in negotiations. The question of ore is dealt with in my telegram No. 7946, December 13, 4 p.m., and it is urged that telegraphic instructions be sent me on both these points earliest possible moment.