Memorandum of Conversation, by the Under Secretary of State (Welles)

The Cuban Ambassador72a called to see me this afternoon to discuss various Cuban problems, including the pending controversy going on in the Constituent Assembly with regard to the so-called transitory provisions of the new Constitution governing the moratorium.73

In the course of our conversation the Ambassador said with the greatest emphasis that no one thing had done more harm to United States prestige in Latin America, and particularly in Cuba, than the arrangement entered into with the Mexican Government by the Sinclair Company. The Ambassador stated that he had heard from various sources in Habana that it was believed that the only reason why the Sinclair Company had entered into this arrangement with Mexico, after the expropriation of the Sinclair properties by Mexico, was because the United States Government was unwilling or unable to afford proper protection to American interests in other countries. The Ambassador [Page 1027] said he was saying this to me in the most friendly manner because of his deep and abiding affection for the United States and because he hated to see a situation of this kind arise which might have grave and prejudicial effects upon the unity of the continent.

S[umner] W[elles]
  1. Pedro Martinez Fraga.
  2. See pp. 763 ff.