The Secretary of State to the Irish Minister ( Brennan )
Sir: I have the honor to refer to your conversation of July 15 with Mr. Welles in which you expressed the hope of the Irish Government that the United States might find it possible to sell or charter to the Irish Government four or five ships in addition to the two ships for which the Irish Government is now negotiating.
The Department of State in consultation with other appropriate agencies of this Government has given very thorough and sympathetic consideration to your request. I deeply regret, however, that under present conditions and in view of the shipping requirements of the United States, it has not been found possible to make available to the Irish Government additional vessels either through sale or charter. As the Department stated in its memorandum of May 24, 1941, the offer of the American Government to make available to the Irish Government two freight vessels was made in the face of an acute shipping shortage in the United States and only because this Government desired to aid in the transportation of essential food supplies to Ireland and to alleviate the situation of the Irish people in their present difficult circumstances.
This Government desires now, as always, to give every consideration to the needs of Ireland and it is a matter of regret that the present shipping situation makes it impossible to go further in meeting the request presented in behalf of the Irish Government. I hope, however, that the delivery of the two vessels mentioned above may be completed at an early date and that they will help appreciably in the solution of Ireland’s supply problem.