467.11/900: Telegram

The American Commissioner on the Turkish-American Claims Commission (Nielsen) to the Secretary of State

Your September 20, 5 p.m. In telegram of yesterday I endeavored briefly to indicate existing situation. Probably reference to terms of [Page 931]payment of 5 years is only point in Department’s telegram which now requires comment. In objecting to Sevki’s offer I took exception not only to amount but to term of 12 years. I have not been misled by opposition constantly employed to raise obstacles and I am disposed to take seriously pleas made with regard to financial situation of Turkey. Sevki offered to show me records of Ministry of Finance to prove they decided positively they could not pay more than $100,000 a year. I replied that he and I accepted each other’s word without written proof. Information from the Embassy confirms my view concerning financial conditions. If Department willing to accept the offer made it might authorize me in my discretion to play for slight modifications such as interest on deferred payments and a shorter term of payment and at the same time allow me to yield on points I might raise if Turks should not make concessions. In reaching a conclusion Department will understand that my representations of August 14 and 1637 played up large figures originally used and my own somewhat freely but legitimately considering nature of opposition. We have all agreed that only a relatively small number of cases would stand before a court.

  1. The Commissioner’s declarations verbales received by the Department as enclosures to the Commissioner’s despatch of August 17, p. 918.