500.A15A4 Permanent Disarmament Commission/5: Telegram
The Secretary of State to the American Delegate (Wilson)
228. Your 426, November 1, 2 p.m. The last sentence of your proposed statement might imply an acquiescence on our part to further measures of supervision and control, as authorized in our 163, June 30, 7 p.m.,2 before having used this concession as a trading card. As a practical matter it would be extremely difficult to revert from a concession once made even if the contingency on which it was based was not completely fulfilled. We, therefore, incline to the belief that this sentence might be reframed so as to retain our freedom of action, [Page 354]pointing out that it would be difficult for us to alter our attitude on supervision and control until we knew definitely what we were going to have in the way of treaty provisions that would require such supervision and control; that thus far our position had been clearly set forth, but that if the final treaty resulted in substantial reductions of armaments, we might be willing to acquiesce in the extension of the powers of the Permanent Disarmament Commission.