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

No. 249

Sir: I have the honor to refer to my despatches No. 353, dated July 18, 1921,30 and No. 463, dated September 14, 1921,31 and to the Department’s instruction No. 79, dated October 5, 1921,32 concerning the cases of impressment of American citizens into the Greek Army operating in Asia Minor. I have the honor to inform the Department that in spite of repeated representations made by the High Commission to the Greek High Commission, as well as by American Consular officers to the local Greek authorities in the occupied districts, cases of actual or attempted impressment are constantly occurring. In spite of the fact that the Greek High Commissioner has never insisted upon the right of the Greek authorities in any of the cases in question it is evident that the Greek military authorities have never received instructions to cease this practice. Besides the cases of actual impressment which have been brought to the attention of the High Commission, there are numerous others of naturalized Americans who have been threatened with impressment and have managed to avoid the same by leaving the district in which they were sojourning at the time.

I venture to renew my suggestion embodied in despatch No. 353, dated July 18, 1921, that the Department take steps to bring this matter to the attention of the Greek Government through the American Legation at Athens in an effort to have appropriate instructions sent through the Greek Ministry of War to the local Greek military commanders in Asia Minor. In the mean time the High Commission will not cease its efforts to aid in whatever way possible such individual cases as are brought to its attention.

I have [etc.]

Mark L. Bristol