The Secretary of State to President Harding

My Dear Mr. President: Referring to our conversation today with respect to the proposed inquiry into the atrocities in Anatolia, I take the liberty of enclosing a copy of a letter addressed by Dr. Ward and Mr. Yowell to the American Consul at Aleppo, under date of April 5, 1922,10 and also a copy of Dr. Barton’s letter addressed to me under date of May 19, 1922.11 I also enclose the report of the statement of Mr. Austen Chamberlain in the House of Commons on May 15, 1922, taken from the New York Times. 12

Permit me to again express my view of the seriousness of the decision that you are called upon to make. Our interests in the Near East are the result of generations of effort and have engaged, I may say, the Christian sentiment of the entire country. If our failure to take part in this inquiry and thus, without any further commitment on our part, to exercise a restraining influence, should lead to the virtual expulsion of our Christian missionaries and educators from Asia Minor it would be most unfortunate.

Permit me also to say that our refusal to take part in this inquiry will make, I fear, a very disagreeable impression not only here but also with that important section of opinion abroad which is most favorably disposed toward the United States.

I may add that the correspondence with the Department indicates a deep and widespread interest in this matter.

Faithfully yours,

Charles E. Hughes
  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed; see extract quoted supra.
  3. See the New York Times of May 16, 1922.