The Minister in Egypt (Kirk) to the Secretary of State
[Received March 22—2:47 a.m.]
434. Department’s 204, March 11, 6 p.m. In respect to American representation at meetings of the Middle East Supply Council I consider [Page 3]that, since Chipman6 and Jones7 of the Legation staff maintain daily contact with both the M. E. S. C. and the British Embassy here in connection with following Egypt’s supply problems and since Chipman attends as an observer meetings of the Nitrate Control Committee and Jones likewise attends meetings of the Anglo-Egyptian Supply Committee sent to change the actual arrangements. Moreover, it should be borne in mind that the Egyptian authorities have not approached thus far either the British authorities or the Legation in respect to Lend-Lease except in the case of nitrates about which the Legation is being fully informed. If the Department desires, however, that a member of the Legation staff be designated to represent the Government on the M. E. S. C., I suggest that Chipman be so designated. General Maxwell states that in such a case he would designate Captain Jones of his staff.
As for sending here a representative of the Lend-Lease Administration for the purpose of making a survey of the situation so far as non-military requirements are concerned, I consider that this would not serve a useful purpose, at least not at present, owing to the fact that the Center has attached to it or at its ready disposal a considerable number of agricultural and economic experts long familiar with the basic requirements of the entire Near East area. The Legation enjoys easy access to these experts as well as to those connected with the Egyptian Government and certain private organizations here and I feel that unless or until there is reason to amplify the information available to the M. E. S. C. no useful purpose would be served by endeavoring to duplicate the latter’s work. The Legation will obtain any information along the foregoing lines which the Department may request.
General Maxwell who maintains close contact with the M. E. S. C. through the Office of the Minister of State agrees with the foregoing.
In the event that developments prove the necessity for additional assistance especially clerical, I shall inform the Department.