462.00 R 296/832: Telegram

The Ambassador in France (Herrick) to the Secretary of State

19. L–302 [from Logan].

Conference convened 3 p.m. today and was confined to formalities with emphasis on strict limitation scope of deliberation to terms of reference decided in London. It therefore follows no discussion whatsoever inter-Allied debt. Cable full report tomorrow.
Reference paragraph 2 my L–297 and Department’s L–184.7 Churchill8 asked me meet him British Embassy immediately after Conference which I did in agreement with Herrick and Kellogg. Churchill expressed desire to reach settlement with us and willing to accept my memorandum to Leith-Ross dated January 3d9 as basis of settlement except that he reserved my figures of 65 million on account of Army costs and 60 million on account of our other claims for discussion and adjustment between Niemeyer10 and myself. Stated specifically that his agreement to our participation on the [Page 135] basis of the Leith-Ross memorandum was to be considered as “all inclusive” of all our various claims and that if Niemeyer and myself could agree on figures he would not raise question regarding our position on enemy shipping, pre-war debts, pre-war damages, etc. Churchill stated this agreement his part subject confirmation by British Cabinet. I said any agreement effected by me subject Department’s approval. Churchill intimated that Cabinet would support him.

Niemeyer and myself meet tonight for the purpose of discussing and if possible reaching agreement on figures.

Anticipate no special difficulties, as Churchill, in Niemeyer’s and my presence, stated that British willing to accept figures for our participation covering both our Army costs and our other claims provided actual annual burden was not in excess of the annual burden incumbent upon the Allies under the Wadsworth Agreement.11 At the conclusion of our conversation, Churchill with my concurrence issued following statement to press:

“Mr. Logan, one of American representatives at the Conference, and Mr. Churchill, Chancellor of the Exchequer, had a friendly personal talk after the plenary session of the Conference on the particular point outstanding between Great Britain and the United States.

While no decision could be reached on actual details, there was a general agreement that the matter should be further explored with good hopes of reaching a solution equitable to Great Britain, the United States and all the other parties concerned. The prospects of an early settlement must therefore be considered favorable.

If an agreement should be reached the general work of the conference would be facilitated and expedited.”

  • Logan
  • Herrick
  1. Telegram in two sections.
  2. Neither printed.
  3. Winston Churchill, Chancellor of the Exchequer and head of the British delegation at the Conference.
  4. Foreign Relations, 1924, vol. ii, p. 132.
  5. Sir Otto Ernst Niemeyer, member of the British delegation at the Conference.
  6. Army Costs Agreement of May 25, 1923; Foreign Relations, 1923, vol. ii, p. 180.