Memorandum by the Secretary of State

During the call of the British Ambassador, I again reiterated, in stronger terms than some days ago, the scope and nature of our economic program for the restoration of normal trade conditions, employment and conditions of peace, and reemphasized the marvelous opportunity for our two countries to assume leadership and go forward, instead of sitting quietly while the world gravitates unerringly down the road of militarism along which it is now travelling at increasing speed.

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The Ambassador seemed almost enthusiastic about the opportunity, as well as the proposal and program. I believe he will use his best efforts back at London to cooperate. He indicated his belief that Mr. Neville Chamberlain would be disposed to go along with the program, and he referred to the confidential fact that our two governments are exchanging suggestions with the view to ascertaining whether conversations looking towards a trade agreement would be feasible.

I expressed my satisfaction at this indicated initial step, and then I added that what is really of equal, if not greater, importance at the same time is the necessity for his country and mine to proclaim the fundamentals of this broad doctrine of economic liberalism which has the twin objectives of restoring economic well-being and conditions of peace. I then added further that a third exceedingly important point in the movement is that each country might indicate its definite purpose gradually to abolish clearing arrangements or other vicious bilateral methods which are holding back and obstructing the entire movement. I illustrated with the Canadian-German Agreement of recent date.51

C[ordell] H[ull]
  1. Signed at Ottawa, October 22, 1936, League of Nations Treaty Series, vol. clxxiii, p. 311.