860F.00/657: Telegram

The Ambassador in France (Bullitt) to the Secretary of State

491. Bonnet said to me this evening that the German Ambassador had delivered to him a note on behalf of his Government in which it was stated that since the Czechoslovak Government had requested Hitler to take charge of Bohemia and Moravia because the Czechoslovak Government was unable to preserve order in those districts and since everything that had happened was in accordance with the desires of the Czechoslovak Government there was no cause for France to be in the least excited about the developments. I asked him what he had replied. He said that he had received the note and said nothing.

I asked Bonnet if the French Government intended to make any statement or to react in any way. He said that Coulondre had asked for information at the Foreign Office in Berlin today and that Alphand, Director of Commercial Accords, had received orders to return to Paris and to break off the commercial negotiations which were about to be brought to a successful conclusion. There would be a debate in the Chamber of Deputies on Thursday or Friday in which both he and Daladier would express the point of view of the French Government.

I asked Bonnet what he envisaged for the future. He said that he could not see any possibility of any successful negotiations anywhere in Europe at the present time. There was nothing for France and England to do but to arm as fast as possible and stand ready to meet any attack. He then said “You must help us”. I passed over this remark and began to ask him other questions but he repeated “The United States must help us”. I asked what he meant by this and he said “You must support us in any way you can”. I said that there were very decided limits on any support to be expected from the United States. He replied “At least you can change the Neutrality Act so that we can get arms and munitions from America”.