368.117/122: Telegram

The Chargé in Greece ( Hall ) to the Secretary of State


147. I am pleased to be able to inform the Department that the Acting Foreign Minister has at last consented to exempt naturalized Greeks of all classes from military service in the Greek Army if they have served in the United States Army. This action has been taken as a special favor, inasmuch as the Government is prohibited by Greek law from considering these men to be American citizens if their naturalization took place without the consent of the Greek Government after January 15, 1914. Unfortunately the general staff of the army must approve this decision, but as a special man in the Foreign Office to whom I can report all cases has been assigned to this work, I have reason to believe that the arrangement will function successfully. I asked the Foreign Minister why a circular instruction on exemption could not be issued. He replied that if that were done, the representatives of various European countries would demand the same privilege. For this reason I do not consider it advisable that general publicity be given to this arrangement.