File No. 763.72119/1113
The Ambassador in Italy ( Page) to the Secretary of State
[Received January 12, 6.45 p.m.]
1353. Press comments on President’s note [message] show generally apprehension lest his words regarding Italy may exclude her claim to control of eastern Adriatic as only possible safeguard of eastern coast of Italy. Some also insist on Italy’s right as great power to proportionate interest in eastern Mediterranean guaranteed to Italy by pact of London. The comments are chiefly concerned with Italy’s essential interests. They generally agree that Russia’s condition is impossible of redemption. Only Clerical and Socialist press praise note without above reservation. Chief Vatican organ approves note highly and says it should have appeared in August as it accords so with Pope’s note.1 Giolitti’s organ Stampa attacks covertly President’s reference to freedom of sea which it intimates America disregards. It says the question of the Dardanelles, like the question of the Panama Canal, is ripe today.