The Chargé in the Netherlands ( Gunther ) to the Acting Secretary of State
[Received July 11, 1.36 a.m.]
6557. American Mission 311. Confidential. My 6521, July 1, 6 p.m. I herewith [transmit] a translation of the reply7 of the Minister for [Page 656] Foreign Affairs to the note addressed to him by the French Charge d’Affaires on the 28th ultimo:
“The Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands has received from the French Charge d’Affair[e]s ad interim a communication addressed to the Royal Government by the Allied and Associated Powers regarding the case of the ex-Kaiser and the ex-Crown Prince of Germany.
This communication which according to its terms is only based on rumors contains an admonition to a neutral and friendly Government which has painfully surprised the Royal Government.
The Royal Government is conscious of its international obligations; it is equally conscious of not having failed to fulfill them.
With regard to the case raised by the communication of the powers, it must reserve to itself the free exercise of its sovereignty as to the rights which belong to it and the duties incumbent upon it. Signed, Karnebeek”.
I saw the Minister for Foreign Affairs this afternoon but refrained from bringing up this question. Mr. van Karnebeek however after some prefatory remarks concerning the Dutch observed that in the case of the ex-Emperor, accordingly, the Dutch would never consent to take an unlawful action. He added that he had been much interested in reading the memorandum concerning the ex-Kaiser prepared by Mr. Lansing and Doctor Scott7 and in thus becoming acquainted with our attitude. May I request that a copy of this memorandum be sent to me as soon as possible.