890G.00/544: Telegram

The Minister Resident in Iraq (Knabenshue) to the Secretary of State

63. British Ambassador tells me Regent now aboard British cruiser at Basra. That Iraqi Army has control of country, that attempt of Regent to establish new constitutional government has collapsed. He has informed his Government of situation and set forth following alternative considerations: (1) crush present government by force of arms, (2) recognize present government, (3) not recognize and withdraw Ambassador leaving Chargé d’Affaires.

The first he believed would be decided on basis of military strategy in respect to whole Near East.

The third would result immediately in reestablishment of Iraq’s relations with Germany, the inrush of several thousand German tourists from Iran and arrival of technical and other German troops by air transport resulting in complete control of country by Germans.

The second might stabilize situation for the present but control of country by Germans would follow as above indicated whenever Germans are ready for it.

His staff is today preparing evacuation plan for British and Americans and will submit tomorrow. Evacuation will be effected before [Page 494] application armed force or non-recognition be decided upon because it is obvious that all British would be placed in concentration camps soon after arrival of Germans for rumors to this effect have been spread. In any case obvious situation critical and dangerous.

He and I believe present coup timed to coincide German attack on Yugoslavia and Greece.