500.A15/486: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Chargé in Argentina (Cable)43


16. During the meetings of subcommission A, Preparatory Commission for the Disarmament Conference, Argentine representatives associated themselves with the representatives of the United States, Great Britain, Japan, and Chile in a declaration which supported proposal to limit naval floating material by classes of ships (the method followed in the Washington Conference on Limitation of Armament) in contradistinction to French thesis of limitation of total tonnage only.

Our representation on Preparatory Commission at Geneva has telegraphed44 that at Commission’s meeting on April 11 Argentine representative declared, to Gibson’s surprise, that he accepted a modified French proposal; meaning of this action is abandonment by Argentina of thesis of limitation by classes.

You will endeavor discreetly to ascertain reasons for apparent change of front; also if it was result of instructions. Bring matter informally to attention of Minister for Foreign Affairs and inform him of your surprise that abandonment in this way of our common position should so suddenly take place.

  1. Similar instructions, in regard to similar action taken by Chilean representative, were sent to the Embassy in Chile in telegram No. 18, Apr. 13, 4 p.m.
  2. No. 229, Apr. 11, 10 p.m., not printed.