The Secretary of State to the Diplomatic Agent and Consul General at Tangier (Blake)
7. Your 8, July 21, 7 p.m. Department approves your suggestion to Vacuum Oil Company.
Article 3 of the Statute of Tangier would seem to prohibit the use of the Zone as a base of military operations. The Department is not [Page 446]in possession of sufficient facts to enable it to determine whether the refueling of the vessels in question would be in contravention of this article. It is, however, of the opinion that any repeated refueling of the Spanish war vessels in Tangier during the present uprising would be in violation of the provisions of the article.
While this Government has not accepted the Statute of Tangier and its provisions are not, therefore, applicable to American nationals, nevertheless the Department, in the interest of international cooperation for the avoidance of complications, would not be disposed to support American nationals in Tangier in any efforts to furnish supplies to either side to the present conflict, contrary to the policy adopted by the constituted authorities of the Tangier Zone.
You should endeavor to ascertain the course which those authorities intend to pursue, and inform the Department and interested American nationals thereof as soon as possible.