441.11 W 892/53: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain (Houghton)


108. Your 131 of June 16. In view of your message which indicates that Chamberlain has withdrawn all objection to the proposed inquiry in London and in view of the assurances contained in a recent letter from Howard, I have decided to agree that the plan for the continued informal exploration of the claims question be resumed. The instructions contained in my 89 of June 5 are therefore canceled. Howard informed me that Broderick will be instructed to proceed to London with Phenix to assist and cooperate in the work. I have written Howard that Phenix will be in London September 1, and that I am proceeding in the matter confidently expecting that the authorities in London will cordially cooperate in promoting the work.

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The first moment that the British indulge in any obstructive tactics or show a disinclination to cooperate fully with us in a friendly and sincere effort to reach an amiable solution of the problem, I feel very strongly that we should break off our informal negotiations. I confess that I am not yet entirely satisfied that Chamberlain means to be really helpful, but I am willing to give him the benefit of the doubt and proceed with the informal preliminaries in the indicated manner, in view of his apparent change of mind which you and Howard report. I am forwarding by pouch copies of Howard’s letter and my reply.