500.A15A4 Air Armaments/43: Telegram

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

55. Continuing my 52, April 2, 2 p.m. Following agreement reached regarding position on aviation:

We regard the problems of aviation and submarines as interlocked, particularly as one of the chief uses of the bombing plane is the destruction of hostile submarines. If the abolition of submarines is agreed to, we would in turn be willing to abolish bombardment aviation. This could be effected by (a) the abolition of all bombing planes and (b) a general undertaking not to launch or drop bombs or missiles from the air. This does not include observation, attack, pursuit or similar planes, which may mount machine guns provided, however, that their use is limited by the rules already prescribed by international law for guns, and provided further that their use shall not invalidate the purpose of clauses (a) and (b) which in effect is to prevent the use of guns, missiles, bombs, or weapons from the air of any description against centers of civilization. We favor the basic principle of limiting all fighting from the air over land to armed objectives of the enemy.