800.51W89 Great Britain/480
Memorandum by the Acting Secretary of State
The British Ambassador called me up at one thirty to say that his communication had got through to London and that the Chancellor of the Exchequer had been willing to delay his speech. However, he had just heard from London that the debate was on in Parliament and that the Chancellor of the Exchequer would, therefore, make a statement at four o’clock this afternoon Washington time; he asked permission to give publicity to the exchange of notes and to the agreed statement.
I called up the President, who directed me to say in no uncertain terms that he would not approve the issuance of the statement in advance of the exchange of notes, that our reply could not be sent before tomorrow and so the statement could not be given out before tomorrow. On receiving this information, the Ambassador was very much upset and said that an impossible situation had been created, etc. etc.; that the Chancellor of the Exchequer must say something and, in the circumstances, what could he say? I repeated the instructions which the President had given me, saying merely that the exchange of notes and the statement could not be made public today.