724.3415/1870: Telegram

The Bolivian Minister for Foreign Affairs (Gutiérrez) to the Secretary of State


840. My Government has received the cablegram signed by the representatives of the neutral countries29 in which cablegram they request that we send to our delegates information on the incidents in Chaco of the 29th of June and the subsequent ones. In the same cablegram they request of Bolivia the immediate suspension of every act of hostility. They add that they have addressed the Government of Paraguay with identic recommendations. A second cable of the 22nd30 transcribed to us the reply of the Republic of Paraguay instructing [Page 37] her delegates to return to Washington. My Government is grateful for the interest in peace which is displayed by the representatives of the five neutral countries which had charge of the negotiations on the pact of non-aggression proposed by Bolivia and formulates the following declarations: our pacific attitude has been fully proved by our initiating the pact together with our stay at Washington until the attack of Paraguay in Chaco and more specifically by having accepted with slight modifications the draft of Mr. White 31 which contained the basic points of every non-aggression convention not to advance, not to attack, and to submit any incident which might arise to a commission of neutrals. Paraguay did not accept these bases and attacked us on the 29th of June, causing us various casualties. It created the pretext for retiring from the conferences, categorically setting aside the earnest request of the neutrals, to return to them. Subsequently it repeated the aggression on a large scale the 15th of July by attacking with 500 soldiers our post on the western shore of the Chuquisaca lagoon. Paraguay did not accept any investigation of the events of June 29. It could have brought to the conferences of Washington any observations. It withdrew from the conference in order to attack us without previous declaration of war. After the attack, she presents herself again at Washington, making a show of pacific intentions (pacifismo). This is mockery of the reality of events and a mockery not only for us but for the neutrals themselves. The aggression of the 15th of July has deeply moved the whole republic in an extraordinary way. Bolivia is weary of these Paraguayan aggressions so often repeated, and does not desire to lend herself to new simulations. Already in cable of the 20th, we stated to our delegates that in view of the repeated acts of violence of Paraguay we cannot continue in conversations without diminishing the dignity of our country.

I greet your Excellency [etc.]

Julio A. Gutiérrez
  1. Dated July 21, p. 35.
  2. See footnote 27.
  3. Presumably the Draft Pact of Non-Aggression of May 6, p. 8.