Memorandum of Conversation, by the Under
Secretary of State (Welles)
,] November 16, 1942.
The Irish Minister called to see me this morning at my request.
I read to the Minister the aide-mémoire
attached herewith but I did not give him a copy thereof. The
Minister asked if it would not be possible for his Government to
have made available to it the information in the files of the War
Department since it was the sole desire of the Irish Government to
prevent activities of the type complained of in the War Department’s
publication and to eliminate any sources of danger to the forces of
the United States. I told the Minister that I would be very glad to
talk this over with the War Department to see if they desired to
designate a military officer to discuss the question with the Irish
On October 29 the Minister of Ireland handed to the Under
Secretary of State a memorandum relative to a Pocket Guide to Northern Ireland published by the War
and Navy Departments for distribution to the American forces.
The Minister referred orally to certain passages in the Pocket Guide to which the Irish
Government takes exception. Reference was made in particular to
the statement that, “Eire’s neutrality is a real danger to the
Allied cause. There, just across the Irish Channel from
embattled England, and not too far from your own billets in
Ulster, the Axis nations maintain large legations and staffs.
These Axis agents send out weather reports, find out by
espionage what is going on in Ulster.”
In view of the representations made by the Minister of Ireland a
copy of his memorandum was referred to the War Department for
[Page 772] comment. The War
Department has now replied that information in its files fully
substantiates the statement made in the Pocket
Guide to Northern Ireland to which objection was made
by the Irish Minister.