810.20 Defense/1096: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Argentina (Armour)

476. The Department has consulted the War and Navy Departments in regard to the resumption in Washington of the staff conversations with Argentina. The Navy expresses its approval. The War Department states that, owing to the Navy’s preference for Washington, it is willing to concur. Both Departments emphasize that the Argentine military and naval representatives should possess sufficient authority to reach military agreements without being compelled to consult their Government about details.

You will recall that on June 24 the Air Attaché of the Argentine Embassy presented to the Department a list of raw materials and aeronautical equipment and stated that two other lists would follow. Under existing conditions, the Lend-Lease Act2 provides the only possibility available to Argentina of obtaining any early delivery on military and naval material. In view of the foregoing, the Department is of the opinion that it would be mutually advantageous if these representatives could be authorized to negotiate at the same time for the acquisition of armament under the Lend-Lease Act. (See Department’s circular telegram May 20, 10 p.m.)3

You are therefore requested to approach the Argentine Government in order to obtain an expression of its views on this proposal. You may state that is it the understanding of this Government that the Argentine Government is disposed to renew staff conversations and that it would be happy if the Argentine authorities would concur in [Page 324] the desirability of appointing a Military-Naval Commission clothed with sufficient authority to reach agreements on both of these subjects subject to the subsequent approval of each Government.

The Department is addressing a communication in the same sense to the Argentine Embassy.

  1. Approved March 11, 1941; 55 Stat. 31.
  2. Ante, p. 137.