138 Military Service/1

The Secretary of State to the Secretary of War (Woodring)10

The Secretary of State presents his compliments to The Honorable, the Secretary of War, and requests that the United States High Commissioner to the Commonwealth of the Philippines be advised that this Department desires that no passports be issued to citizens of the United States or to citizens of the Commonwealth of the Philippines [Page 872] who are going abroad to enter foreign military or naval service without the permission of this Government. It may be stated that such permission will be denied in the absence of special legislation of Congress authorizing such service.

It is also requested that the High Commissioner be advised that this Department desires that in all cases in which there is a suspicion that applicants intend to enter foreign military or naval service, such applicants be required to execute affidavits substantially as follows:

“I solemnly swear that if I am issued the passport for which I am making application and of which this affidavit is a part, I will not, during the validity of the passport or during the validity of any renewal or extension thereof, enter any foreign military or naval service without first obtaining the permission of the United States Government.”

In such cases the High Commissioner should also make whatever investigations he may deem necessary to determine the true facts. If it appears that an applicant is intending to enter foreign military or naval service, he should be refused a passport and this Department should be advised of all the circumstances by telegraph. If the High Commissioner is in doubt regarding any particular case, he should refer the matter to this Department by telegraph with the names and addresses of two or more persons in the United States who might be in a position to furnish information regarding the applicant’s character and his probable intentions.

This Department also desires that the High Commissioner place on all passports which he issues on and after August 16, 1937, and on all passports which come into his possession for any reason, an endorsement reading as follows:

“This passport is not valid for travel to or in any foreign state in connection with entrance into or service in foreign military or naval forces.”

In view of the urgency of the matter it will be appreciated if the War Department will communicate this message to the High Commissioner by telegraph.

  1. Identic letters were sent to the Secretary of the Interior for the attention of the Director of Territories and Island Possessions, and to the Secretary of the Navy for the Governors of Samoa and Guam.