Memorandum by Mr. Raymond A. Hare of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs
Mr. Russell of the International Postal Service of the Post Office Department telephoned on April 26 to say that the Post Office Department had at long last received a reply from the Iranian Postal [Page 733] Administration with regard to the non-delivery in Iran of American second-class mail.
It appears that in taking up this matter with the Iranian Postal Administration, the Post Office Department had made specific reference to the case of the National Geographic Magazine. In its reply therefore the Iranian Postal Administration, making reference only to the specific case of National Geographic, asked that it be supplied with the names and addresses of subscribers who had not received the magazine to the end that an appropriate investigation might be made. No reference whatsoever was made to the general subject of restrictions on second-class mail.
In making this reply the Iranian Postal Administration was obviously side-stepping the whole issue of restrictions on second-class mail, and as a result the whole question is left completely up in the air.
It may be observed in this connection that the original communication of the Post Office Department to the Iranian Postal Administration was dated September 15, 1936. It was followed up by subsequent communications on the subject dated November 9, 1936, January 26, 1937, and March 22, 1937. In the case of the communication of March 22, 1937, Mr. Russell stated that the inquiry had been of a general nature and had not mentioned any specific publication.
When inquiry was made as to what action the Post Office Department contemplated taking in the matter, Mr. Russell stated that they intended to communicate with National Geographic for the purpose of securing the names and addresses of Iranian subscribers who had not received their copies of the National Geographic, and that this information would be transmitted to the Iranian Postal Administration in accordance with its suggestion. He seemed to be of the opinion that there was little that could be done for the relief of subscribers in Iran of American publications as long as the Iranian Government maintains its present adamant position.