The Minister in Bolivia (Jenkins) to the Secretary of State

No. 292

Sir: I have the honor to inform the Department that when I called on the Minister of Foreign Affairs yesterday afternoon to hand to him the text of several telegrams from Secretary Hull concerning the Habana meeting, I took advantage of the opportunity to give Dr. Ostria Gutiérrez the substance of the Department’s telegram No. 28 of July 18, in regard to the progress of the conversations looking toward the establishment of tin smelters in the United States to handle Bolivian ore. Dr. Ostria Gutiérrez seemed quite pleased to know that the outlook was encouraging and said that this was probably the most important thing our Government could undertake in relation to Bolivia at this time.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs then told me confidentially that in the course of a recent visit to the Foreign Office, Dr. Wendler, the German Minister, had touched discreetly on German-Bolivian relations. Dr. Ostria Gutiérrez said Dr. Wendler had intimated the war might not last much longer and that it was time for the Bolivian Government to consider its relations with the Reich. According to Dr. Ostria Gutiérrez, the German Minister said his government was very much interested in increasing trade between the two countries and suggested that Germany would be anxious to obtain tin ore from Bolivia when the proper time came. Dr. Ostria Gutiérrez told me that in replying to the German Minister he emphasized that the Bolivian [Page 528] Government was interested solely in furthering the interests of Bolivia.

The Minister of Foreign Affairs then went on to discuss German influence in this country.…

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Respectfully yours,

Douglas Jenkins