500.A15a3/684d: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Chairman of the American Delegation ( Stimson )


75.… It is our conviction that the objections which have so far become articulate in Congress to your plans as announced, come from Hale and Britten33 and that they voice positions which we believe to be untenable. Some regret still exists that the totals in the cruiser category are still so high and we hark back to the negotiations which took place by cable before MacDonald’s visit and to the conversations when he was here at which time he hoped to do something further in the direction of cruiser reduction. It is our hope that at some appropriate time and in the delegation’s discretion, you will propose to the British that they consider the old suggestion of police cruisers, at least between you and them. At that time there was in our minds a tentative suggestion that there be substituted a special category of police cruisers of limited speed and armament or alternately of 6-inch gun cruisers over age, but kept in service for police purposes, in lieu of a certain tonnage allocated to the 6-inch gun cruiser category. Of course, you will understand the reasons for this suggestion, how it is made, and that we are not attempting to press an instruction on the delegation. Nevertheless, we cannot abandon the hope that Mac-Donald will be sympathetic toward this proposal. Perhaps it is the sort of suggestion which should be relegated to a later stage in the discussions.

  1. Fred A. Britten, chairman of the Naval Affairs Committee of the House of Representatives.