The Minister in Poland (Stetson) to the Secretary of State

No. 404

Sir: I have the honor to refer to my despatch No. 34 of September 16, 1925,2 in relation to the negotiations for the sale of arms between the Colt Arms Manufacturing Company and the Polish Government. It appears that the Polish Government has given its unqualified approval of the Browning machine gun and has written to the representative of the Colt Arms Manufacturing Company requesting the submission of new bids on terms other than those considered in the original contract.

It appears that in the original contract it was provided that part of the guns to be ordered was to be manufactured in Hartford, Connecticut, and part in the new plant to be erected in Poland and directed by representatives of the Colt Arms Manufacturing Company.

The present attitude of the Government is to cut down the order and it requests a proposition which provides for the manufacture of guns only in Poland.

Mr. Rudnicki, the local representative of the Colt Arms Manufacturing Company, has requested the Legation to intervene. The present status of the negotiations was carefully considered by the Commercial Attaché and myself and it seems to us that there is nothing which the Legation may properly undertake. The Colt Arms Manufacturing Company was asked to submit bids to the Polish Government and offer samples to prove the performance of their guns. At the time the order consisted of about 10,000 guns. The Polish Government has accepted the Browning gun as the best of those submitted but now wishes to consider a smaller order on different terms from the terms originally discussed. It seems to me that there has been no unfairness or discrimination against the American company in this connection and that because of financial and political reasons the Polish Government wishes to discuss the granting of a contract on different terms from those originally discussed. To intervene in such a connection would in my opinion be a contravention of the Department’s instructions issued in telegram No. 70 of August 6, 1925, 3 p.m.

I have [etc.]

John B. Stetson, Jr.
  1. Not printed.