711.21/524: Telegram

The Minister in Colombia (Philip) to the Secretary of State

9. In a confidential memorandum received from President Suarez last week2 allusion was made to the undesirability of our Government making favorable action on the treaty contingent upon the celebration of contracts between the Colombian Government and American nationals. I have considered this as a probable misinterpretation of confidential and personal remarks of my own when conversing with the President to the effect that I believed that the closing of contracts such as the Pierce proposition or offer3 at this juncture would have a beneficial effect upon the treaty situation in the United States by inspiring confidence and demonstrating the good will of Colombia etc. Reports have also reached me that it is being hinted in political circles that the Government of the United States is behind the Pierce offer. I am about to send a confidential memorandum,4 in reply to the President, plainly stating that my Government has no intention of making such further reservations in regard to the treaty and is not lending its support to any particular undertakings in which Americans may be engaged with the Colombian Government; and further that any personal views I may have expressed were given unofficially and with the sole idea of assisting Colombia and not of seeking favors for American citizens. It occurs to me that possibly pertinent conversations regarding pending contracts may have taken place between the Department and the Colombian Minister at Washington; if such is the case I respectfully request to be advised of the gist of them at as early a date as possible.

  1. Printed in S. Doc. 64, 68th Cong., 1st sess., p. 57.
  2. Negotiation for railway contract by Dr. Walter B. Pierce.
  3. Printed in S. Doc. 64, 68th Cong., 1st sess., p. 59.