550.S1/18: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Great Britain (Mellon)

164. Your 188, May 31, 10 a.m. This Government is willing to agree to the general ideas for the international economic conference that Sir John Simon suggests although there seems to be compelling reasons which make it impossible for us to send representatives to Lausanne. You will realize that the Lausanne Conference in this country means reparations in the public mind. If it is considered advisable to hold such a preparatory conference—and we are inclined to feel it would be—might it not be held elsewhere.

This Government is unable at the present moment to suggest a definite date for the subsequent conference, especially because the views and wishes of the French, Italian and other Governments have not yet been sounded, and the other conferences to which various European Governments, especially the British, are pledged to attend. Our preliminary idea is that the conference should meet in August or as early thereafter as existing arrangements of the interested Governments and the necessary preparations for the conference permit.

On the matter of the agenda, this Government will defer suggestions until we have had time for conference between interested Departments of this Government. In the meantime, we will, of course, be interested in receiving such suggestions as may be worked out by the British and other interested Governments.

Repeat to Paris, Rome and Berlin for their confidential information.