865.002 Mussolini/16: Telegram
The Ambassador in Italy ( Garrett ) to the Secretary of State
[Received February 2—3:40 p.m.]
9. Speaking for Signor Mussolini, the Foreign Minister requested that I should convey to you his appreciation for the manner in which the Department and the nation have reacted to the Butler affair. During the course of the conversation today, Grandi asked me what I thought would be your attitude toward a request for grace from the Prime Minister. Grandi was of the opinion that, while the proceedings against the General might possibly continue, harmful speculation in the press would be curbed thereby, and the possibility of strained relations between Italy and the United States lessened. Control over the press is possible here; but not elsewhere in Europe. I am delaying my reply to the Foreign Minister until advised by the Department.