The Secretary of State to the Minister in Bolivia (Caldwell)

No. 17

Sir: The Department has received your confidential despatch no. 40, dated October 5, 1937,19 reporting upon your conversation with the Bolivian Minister for Foreign Affairs during which the latter raised the point of a possible meeting of the Presidents of Argentina, Brazil, [Page 28]Bolivia and Paraguay for the purpose of discussing a possible settlement of the Chaco controversy.

The Department approves, in general, of the statements you made to the Bolivian Minister for Foreign Affairs, as set forth in the penultimate paragraph of your despatch. However, you are requested, in such manner as you deem appropriate, to express orally to Dr. Vaca Chávez the following additional views of your Government.

In your conversation with the Bolivian Minister for Foreign Affairs you may state that your Government concurs, in general, with the views that you expressed during the previous conversation. You will add, however, that the Government of the United States is of the opinion that the efforts being made by the Conference to bring about a solution of the controversy should not be relaxed in any manner pending the possible meeting of the four presidents; but that on the contrary, there should be a special effort to make further progress toward a solution. This Government, of course, would heartily welcome any contribution toward a final settlement that might be made as a result of the proposed conference of the four presidents. It appears probable that the conference organization might well be utilized in carrying out any plan that the four presidents might be able to agree upon. It would be valuable, therefore, to have the Conference continue its work and to be in a position to take advantage of any favorable developments that arise outside of the Conference.

A copy of this instruction is being transmitted to the missions at Buenos Aires and Rio de Janeiro, and to Ambassador Braden.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
Sumner Welles
  1. Not printed.