Mr. Thomas W. Lamont to the Ambassador in Mexico ( Fletcher ), on Duty in the Department of State

Dear Mr. Fletcher: I had a little chat with you this morning on the subject of the composition of the International Bankers Committee on Mexican affairs, and I explained to you that our view was that it was unwise for us here on this side of the water to insist that American representation on the committee, should, in members, always be maintained exactly equal to the total representation abroad. In other words, we favor inviting to a seat upon the committee, representatives of the Dutch and Swiss interests, which are very considerable. It will be wiser to give them a seat upon the original committee, than to have them act through France and England.

The views of the Department of State which you have represented from time to time to us, have been that in such event we ought to bring our numbers up on this side of the water.

We think it would seem “small” to our friends across the water to press this point; in fact we are not particularly keen to add to the members here. The real point involved is, of course, effective control of policy to be maintained by the Department of State, and that is already understood and agreed to. Therefore, if you can see your way clear to write us saying that the details of the composition of the committee, as to its exact numbers, you are willing to leave to our judgment, we shall be able to clear the matter up.

Here is a cable that came in over a month ago from our London house in the matter.31 It records Curzon’s32 position and I am not [Page 649] surprised. Therefore, if you are still in accord with our talk of this morning, we propose to cable in reply:

American Group now agrees with you that it will be wise to add Dutch Swiss representatives and we propose to make no further increase in number of American committee at present time.

Sincerely yours,

Thomas W. Lamont
  1. The cable was not enclosed.
  2. Earl Curzon of Kedleston, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.