The Consul at Veracruz ( Cochran ) to the Secretary of State

No. 122

Sir: With further reference to the sale to Mexico of the German tank vessel Tine Asmussen, now re-christened the Juan Casiano, reported in despatches nos. 97 and 119 from this Consulate, dated April 2 and 23, 1940,7 I have the honor to inform the Department that, according to an additional article appearing in the daily Diario del Istmo of Coatzacoalcos, on April 23, 1940, this vessel is to be operated only in the Gulf, and that the purchase price was 650,000 pesos (rather than the 200,000 dollars previously reported), which was delivered in cash to the German Embassy in Mexico City at the time of transfer of the title.

From an employee in the German Consulate in this port, I learn that the Germans in Mexico rather hope that the British or French will seize or sink this ship, believing that Germany will be the gainer therefrom in goodwill and sympathy in Latin America. (As the Department is aware, the British and French are reported to have announced that they would refuse to recognize such transfers of German ships during the period of the present war.)

Respectfully yours,

William P. Cochran, Jr.
  1. Despatch No. 97, April 2, not printed.