The Ambassador in Brazil (Gibson) to the Secretary of State
[Received August 8—10:15 a.m.]
179. Having been informed by the Foreign Office that the negotiations for a commercial arrangement with Italy had been referred to the Minister of Finance, I called upon the latter last night. I explained that our Government had been somewhat perturbed at the secretive manner in which the German arrangement had been consummated in spite of assurances given me that we would be given full opportunity for consultation and I expressed the hope and confidence that nothing similar would occur as regards the Italian negotiations. I also gave the Minister the substance of the Department’s 107 July 27, 1 p.m., in order that he as well as the Foreign Office might entertain no doubt as to the seriousness with which our Government views the German arrangement.
The Minister stated that he had insisted that nothing further than an exchange of notes embodying the usual most-favored-nation clause should be signed with Italy. He showed me a draft copy of the proposed notes which appear innocuous and promised to go over them with me again in case there is any change before they are signed.