The Secretary of State to the Secretary of Commerce (Hoover)

My Dear Mr. Secretary: I have received and carefully considered your reply of December 6 to my letter of the 1st, concerning the relation of Germany to future Russian–American trade and the policy to be adopted in that connection.

The importance of direct trade with Russia and the conditions which will favor its development were not absent from my mind when I sent you the memorandum concerning indirect trade through Germany. The suggestions contained in this memorandum assumed an understanding of the main facts brought out in your reply and dealt only with the attitude which this Government should adopt with respect to the supplemental movement of indirect trade which will inevitably exist in greater or less volume.

I do not believe that there is any essential conflict of ideas as to the main course of action to be pursued. Before the memorandum in question was prepared there had been informal consultations between subordinate officers of the Department of State and the Department of Commerce and it was thought that a general understanding had been reached along the lines laid down. The memorandum was submitted as a basis of final discussion, with the purpose especially of cultivating a free exchange of views and cooperation between the two Departments in matters of common concern.

I am [etc.]

Charles E. Hughes