865.4016/129: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Italy (Phillips)

3. Embassy’s telegram no. 392, December 28, 1 p.m.42 While your interpretation of instructions concerning anti-Jewish measures is substantially correct, we feel that your statement to the effect that Jewish citizens “must fend for themselves” is not a correct statement of our attitude. There can be no question of abandoning these citizens even for a moment to their own defense. Our position is that each citizen must decide for himself what preventive action he may consider most useful in connection with his individual case. While the Embassy should carefully avoid any action which might be construed as acquiescence in the application of anti-Jewish measures to Americans, it should, in any concrete case brought to its attention by an American where the measures have been or are being applied make appropriate representations.