711.00111 Armament Control/155

Memorandum by the Chief of the Office of Arms and Munitions Control (Green)

Mr. Jules Henry, Counselor of the French Embassy, called on Mr. Dunn this morning. Mr. Green of CA19 was present.

[Page 802]

Mr. Henry requested information on two points: (1) Whether the President could legally extend to include raw materials the list of arms, ammunition, and implements of war enumerated in his Proclamation declaring an embargo on the exportation of such articles to Ethiopia and Italy without awaiting a further Act of Congress; and (2) Whether the policy expressed in the two Proclamations of the President relating to the war between Ethiopia and Italy and in the President’s statement made at the time these Proclamations were issued, was to be considered as the definite policy of this Government which would be applied to other belligerents should other nations become involved in the present war.

In answer to the first question, Mr. Green stated that the phrase “arms, ammunition and implements of war” had a fairly definite ascertainable meaning and that although the President might at any time proclaim additions to the list already proclaimed, it would seem that an extension of the list to include raw materials would involve a stretching of the term “arms, ammunition and implements of war” beyond its recognized meaning. In this connection, Mr. Green pointed out that the Joint Resolution used this phrase exclusively and avoided the phrase “munitions of war” which had a general meaning and which could easily be understood to include various raw materials.

In answer to the second question, Mr. Green stated that he was not in a position to forecast what the policy of this Government might be in hypothetical circumstances. He invited Mr. Henry’s attention to the words “in these specific circumstances” in the President’s statement.

J[oseph] C. G[reen]
  1. Joseph C. Green, formerly of the Division of Western European Affairs, became Chief of the Office of Arms and Munitions Control on September 19, 1935.