637.116/148: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Cuba ( Long )

173. Your September 22, 11 a.m.

The Department refers to its 147 of August 28, concerning the rice situation and desires that you call upon President Menocal and express to him the deep regret of this Government that the decree issued on September 6th differs materially from that agreed upon on August 17. You may intimate to him that this Department is very much in earnest in its desire that he shall redeem his repeated promises made to Mr. White and yourself as reviewed in your despatch number 393 of September 9th.

You may reiterate to the President that the Department does not desire to urge any agreement which would bring about a rise in the price of rice to the Cuban consumer. The decree of September 6th, as issued by the President, is understood by the Department to be at variance with the commitment given by the President, and does not tend to encourage Cuban buyers to respect their contracts. The Department is confident that President Menocal will see the justice of these observations and will use his best endeavors to reach a practical solution of this problem.

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In view of the near approach of the time limit mentioned in the fifth and sixth clauses of the decree of September 6th, you will impress on the President the necessity for early action which will effect a satisfactory solution.

Cable the Department the present status of the matter and outline briefly the “new plan of settlement by price fixing” referred to in your September 22.