Memorandum of Conversation, by the Assistant Chief of the Division of European Affairs (Hickerson)
Mr. Wrong, Minister Counselor of the Canadian Legation, called at the Department today at my request to discuss the Canadian proposal which was informally put forward on July 18 to establish a Canadian Military Mission in Washington.
I explained to Mr. Wrong that we had immediately upon receipt of his proposal taken it up with the War and Navy Departments; that in so doing we had commented that from the standpoint of general policy the Department of State would welcome the establishment of such a Canadian mission in Washington but that recognizing that this was primarily a military matter we would be disposed to defer to the judgment of the Service Departments in it.
I then told Mr. Wrong that replies had now been received from the War9 and Navy Departments,10 the latter one having just reached me. I explained that the War and Navy Departments had collaborated with one another in studying this question and in preparing their replies; that the replies were, although identical in substance, different in the amount of details that were set forth regarding the reasons for an adverse decision. I stated that for purposes of discussion it therefore seemed to me desirable to use as a basis the Navy Department’s letter of [Page 132] July 21, 1941. I then went over the Navy Department’s letter of July 21 with Mr. Wrong sentence by sentence and he took a number of notes concerning it. I told Mr. Wrong it seemed to us that the Navy Department had made out a convincing case against the desirability of establishing a Canadian Military Mission in Washington.
Mr. Wrong said that he would send a report along these lines to the Canadian Government. He expressed appreciation for the friendly and informal way in which we had dealt with this matter and inquired whether if his Government had further observations to make we would be disposed to give consideration to them. I replied that of course we would give the fullest consideration to any further observations or representations which the Canadian Government might wish to make.