711.672/542: Telegram

The High Commission in Turkey to the Secretary of State


11. Your telegram No. 10, January 18, 7 p.m. Yesterday Admiral Bristol left for Angora. Although the local press is manifesting its disappointment over the Senate’s nonratification of the treaty, still its tone is mild and dignified. Thus far comment is devoid of hostile criticism or suggestions of retaliation. In general, the press expresses its satisfaction that a considerable majority voted in favor of the treaty, but it regrets that under the Constitution a small majority [minority?] can dominate the situation. The comment of the Constantinople organ Milliyet is as follows:11

“The situation from the point of view of law is the following: The President has concluded a treaty with Turkey. He has asked [Page 771]the assent of the Senate to its ratification. Under the Constitution a two-thirds majority is necessary. The Senate has not accorded this assent by a two-thirds majority. Therefore, under these conditions, the President, if he sees fit, will reject the treaty; if he does not see fit he will wait and again submit it to the Senate. How the President will act is not yet known. In any case, however, it is not believed that he will reject the treaty, because it is well known that the American Government is a strong partisan of entering into relations with our Government. Moreover, President Coolidge and Foreign Minister Kellogg have stated on numerous occasions that it is not possible to conclude with Turkey a better treaty than this one. The American Constitution places in the hands of the President the conduct of foreign affairs. The President is absolutely responsible for foreign relations. Therefore, if he believes the entering into relations with Turkey to be absolutely necessary he may do this even without a treaty. So extensive is the executive authority in the United States. In view of this explanation it is necessary to await the action of the President of the United States and not to attach too much importance to the decision of the Senate”.


[Counselor of Embassy]
  1. Quotation not paraphrased.