The Minister Resident in Iraq (Knabenshue) to the Chief of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs (Murray)
[Received March 9.]
Dear Wallace: In response to your letter of January 19th regarding the amendment suggested by the Iraqi Government to Article II of the Treaty of Commerce and Navigation which we are negotiating, I may say that while I was always satisfied that this amendment did not involve any material change in the meaning of the original article as worded by the Department, at least as affecting our interests, I felt it desirable to send Barbour5 to the Ministry for Foreign Affairs to discuss the matter with McDougall, the Legal Adviser. I am enclosing Barbour’s memorandum6 of his conversation with McDougall, from which you will note that the additional language added by the Iraqi Government to the Article is intended to protect them from demands of other countries for similar terms as embodied in the rest of the Article. It is my personal opinion that even this additional language would not give the Iraqi Government the protection they seek, but inasmuch as they want it there and inasmuch as it does not affect our position in the slightest degree, I have no objection in allowing it to remain.
I am expecting reasonably early action from the Iraqi Government on the last stages of the negotiations, but before signing the Treaty, I will, of course, communicate again with the Department by telegram, and, in referring to this present letter to you, will ask for final instructions.