723.2515/599: Telegram

The Minister in Bolivia (Maginnis) to the Secretary of State

35. On Monday, following outbreak of 14th instant, I was assured by Foreign Minister that the Government would prevent any further attacks on Peruvian Legation and Consulate. Monday, La Razon, opposition paper, came out with vitriolic edition causing rumor that Peruvians and their money were responsible. As a result, with feeling intense, this paper was attacked and a few more Peruvian business houses stoned. Government brought troops to La Paz Tuesday, no trouble since, situation gradually becoming more calm. Upon reading carefully note from the Department to be delivered to Foreign Office,90 believing same was between the Department, Legation and Bolivian Government, [and] feeling [garbled groups] actual situation at the time of receipt was therefore liable to make situation more difficult by causing resentment among Bolivians and getting our Government mixed up in internal political situation here, used my best judgment and obtained result desired by delivering Department’s message verbally, therefore avoiding misunderstanding which might follow publication of translation, rather difficult in Spanish. Cable despatches received by press here from various sources carrying excerpts from note have caused some comments on somewhat harsh impressions due to translation.

Yesterday Chilean Chargé d’Affaires showed cable from his Government setting forth paraphrase of Department’s instruction as handed to Chilean Minister for Foreign Affairs by Ambassador Shea and Chilean answer to be delivered to Bolivian Government and published in press here at his discretion. He stated that in his opinion the note was based upon misapprehensions [and was?] little stronger than situation warranted and agreed that it would be much better not to publish. He stated also that he would deliver to Bolivian Minister for Foreign Affairs verbally. I then explained entire matter to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, the manner in which I had handled same and my reasons and handed him note in the form of memorandum for his information. He appreciated my action and stated that he fully agreed. Situation here at present satisfactory and feeling very friendly in all quarters toward our Government.

  1. Text printed from corrected copy received Mar. 30.
  2. See telegram no. 18, Mar. 17, to the Minister in Bolivia, p. 330.