The Ambassador in Argentina (Weddell) to the Secretary of State
No. 2257

Sir: I have the honor to report as follows:

On October 18 I called on the Minister for Foreign Affairs for the purpose of introducing to him Mr. S. Pinkney Tuck, Counselor of this Embassy, who will remain in charge during my absence on leave. In the course of a pleasant conversation I asked Dr. Cantilo whether he could furnish me with any pertinent information regarding the attitude to be adopted by his Government at the forthcoming Lima Conference. The Minister replied that his Government did not intend to advance any contentious views at Lima and that his present information led him to believe that Brazil would follow a similar course. He appeared to think that economic questions, rather than those of a political character, would chiefly occupy the time of the Conference. He said definitely, however, that Argentina would oppose the idea of an American League of Nations and that he felt very strongly that the Lima gathering should rigidly restrict itself to the terms of its agenda and that no new, or controversial, subjects should be introduced.

Dr. Cantilo then said that he had under consideration a project which he thought might be put forward with advantage during the Conference. He recalled that Article 2 of the Convention for the Maintenance, Preservation and Reestablishment of Peace, signed at Buenos Aires on December 23, 1936,48 provides that in the event of war or a virtual state of war between American states, the Governments of the American republics represented at this Conference should undertake without delay the necessary mutual consultations. He felt strongly that this idea might be further developed to provide for consultation on questions other than those relating to a menace of war and covering such matters as economic questions, customs, frontier police, immigration, etc. He added that in such case, and in order to insure prompt consultation, the Governments interested might, if they so desired, delegate their diplomatic representatives to attend the meetings. He admitted that the whole idea had not clearly taken form in his mind as yet and that he was in the course of condensing his views on the subject, and he promised me a written exposé fully elaborating his views within a week.

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In this general connection I am enclosing, as of possible interest to the Department, an article, with translation,49 entitled “New Problems of America—the Lima Conference,” which appeared in Noticias Gráficas of October 5, an afternoon publication of limited circulation.

Respectfully yours,

Alexander W. Weddell
  1. Report of the Delegation of the United States of America to the Inter-American Conference for the Maintenance of Peace, p. 116.
  2. Not printed.