824.248/130

The Secretary of State to the Bolivian Minister ( Guachalla )

Sir: I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your notes of December 14, 194037 and January 2, 1941 in which you convey to me the request of your Government for a military mission consisting of aviation instructors and such additional personnel as may be necessary for the purpose of sending appropriate assistance to the Bolivian military authorities in strengthening the air forces of the Bolivian Army.

In your communication of January 2, you invite my attention to the existence of an Italian Military Mission in Bolivia, and to the request expressed by the United States Minister at La Paz for an opinion of your Government in regard to the incompatibility of the presence of [Page 414] non-American military missions, with the realization of continental solidarity. I have duly noted your statement that your Government is willing to cancel the existing contract with the Italian Military Mission, but that in return it desires the United States War Department to send to Bolivia a mission of aviation officers equipped with the necessary airplanes for purposes of instruction. Your Government considers that this would constitute a genuine technical cooperation of the United States with Bolivia and, in this connection, you request me to obtain from the War Department its views respecting the technical and economic collaboration which might be rendered to your Government.

I am pleased to advise you that this Department has not failed to transmit to the War Department the desire of your Government to obtain an aviation mission. That Department has, as you are aware, directed Major Weddington to proceed to La Paz in order to study the technical aspects of the proposed mission. This Department will also be glad to invite the attention of the War Department to the question of economic collaboration indicated above, and will communicate to you such views as the competent military authorities may desire to express on these subjects.

For the Secretary of State:
Sumner Welles
  1. Not printed.