611.626/55: Telegram

The Commission to Negotiate Peace to the Secretary of State

4572. Referring Herty’s cable to Garvan sent by American Mission’s 4551, October 6, 9 p.m. The letter mentioned in American Mission’s 4474, October 1, 11 p.m., was accepted in full by Germans at meeting of October 4. The option they request was not involved except as diminishing the quantity of stocks on which it will be arranged [will operate]. A proposition made by the American delegates that the Germans should hold 50 per cent or 25 per cent of stocks on hand between August 15 and the date of the coming into force of the treaty, was not insisted on as the general opinion was that it would be [impolitic] to attempt to enforce too severe restrictions.

In accordance with the suggestion of the Belgian Delegation the lists of the requirements of the Allied and Associated Powers will be sent promptly to the Rhineland Commission, who will then discuss with the German representatives the means of filling the orders as expeditiously as possible with regard to choice of factories, details of shipment, et cetera. This appears the most feasible arrangement as the Rhineland Commission conversant with the whole situation.

American Mission agrees with Herty in considering War Trade Board’s [action] in issuing permits freely to consumers to secure dyes through any commercial channel on the very date before negotiations were concluded with the Germans as exceedingly unfortunate for the following reasons: [Page 464]

From the information at hand the [German] agencies concerned will perpetuate the old methods for the [existence of] which there is no real necessity.
That action will infallibly handicap utterly [us in] our relations on this matter with our allies.
It is embarrassing to Herty, who on the day following the issue of licenses made an adequate arrangement, subject to approval from America, with the head of the German dyestuffs experts for the purchase of the balance of the needs of American consumers.
The method initiated by the War Trade Board’s decision will diminish appreciably the amounts to be paid in by way of reparations.
While control is still being maintained, as stated in American Mission’s 4474, paragragh 7, it is [in] advisable to offer inducements to unauthorized diminutions of the stocks under control.

The decision comes just at the moment when what appears to be a thoroughly satisfactory agreement had been reached with the Germans and also a complete understanding had been attained with our allies. Polk.

American Mission