868.48/83: Telegram

The High Commissioner at Constantinople ( Bristol ) to the Acting Secretary of State

168. For American Red Cross. Conditions in Smyrna owing to military situation may create serious disaster. I have received from [Page 416] British High Commission request for assistance to refugees. I had meeting of representatives of American relief and benevolent institutions in Constantinople and we have organized disaster relief committee for Smyrna situation with members of these institutions and of commercial interests. Major Davis as special member of disaster relief committee with medical unit will proceed by destroyer to Smyrna and study situation and make recommendations. Locally there are no funds available for relief work Smyrna. I earnestly request that I be informed by cable that this chapter has been authorized to draw on headquarters for funds on condition that they will be utilized only if the necessity arises. I suggest that fund of $50,000 be made immediately available for this chapter. I am sending this message in code in order that it may not be advertised at large that we intended to undertake relief work in Smyrna and for the same reason I recommend that no funds be allotted by the Red Cross to other institutions for this work. I will use all my influence to have Allies contribute full share for any necessary relief in Smyrna. I will keep you informed of any proposed expenditure.