740.0011 European War 1939/12984

Memorandum of Conversation, by the Assistant Chief of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs (Villard)

Mr. Guérin said that he wished to inform me privately that he had received word to the effect that some approach was being made, or about to be made, by the French General Staff in North Africa with a view to obtaining military supplies in the United States for General Weygand. Mr. Guérin said that his information on this subject was neither clear nor detailed, but that it had nevertheless come to his attention that some such plan was under consideration. There was no indication that this move had either the knowledge or the consent of General Weygand, and Mr. Guérin expressed doubt that General Weygand knew anything about it.

I pointed out to Mr. Guérin that our present trade arrangements with North Africa were purely of an economic nature and that it would scarcely seem appropriate to initiate conversations for military supplies at this time. Mr. Guérin agreed entirely with this view. He said that he merely desired to inform me in confidence that something along these lines might develop as a result of the successful inauguration of our economic trade program for North Africa.