123 Moose, James S./376

The Chargé in Saudi Arabia (Moose) to the Secretary of State

No. 1

Sir: I have the honor to refer to my telegram of April 23 [24], 1942, 6:00 p.m.,3 and to report my arrival in Jidda on the afternoon of Wednesday, April 22, 1942, on board the S. S. Taif.

Shaikh Ibrahim Ibn Al-Mu’ammar, Qaimaqam (Governor) of Jidda, and Saudi Arabian Chargé d’Affaires in Baghdad during the four years I served there, was at the boat landing and escorted me to the staff house of the California Arabian Standard Oil Company where I was temporarily lodged. A military guard of honor was drawn up at the boat landing.

Messrs. A. L. Wathen and J. G. Hamilton, members of the Agricultural Mission to Saudi Arabia,4 who were also passengers on the Taif, were installed in the staff quarters of the Saudi Arabian Mining Syndicate. As the Department is no doubt aware, there is no hotel in Jidda.

On the following day, April 23, 1942, Shaikh Yusuf Yassin, Secretary to King Ibn Saud, telephoned to say that he had just arrived in Jidda, and that he would be glad to receive me that day. While I was calling on Shaikh Yusuf, he suggested that since the Saudi Arabian Minister of Finance, Shaikh Abdullah Sulaiman, was in Jidda at that moment, it might be appropriate for me to call on Shaikh Abdullah. Naturally, I followed his suggestion.

Since the Saudi authorities had not then replied to the Note of March 6, 1942, by which the Legation in Cairo announced the intention of the United States Government to open a Legation in Jidda, I called on the Qaimaqam on April 26, 1942, and inquired whether or not a reply from the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs should be expected. The Qaimaqam, who from time to time represents the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in Jidda, replied that in view of the friendly relations existing between the Governments of Saudi Arabia and the United States, the approval of the Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the establishment of an American Legation in Jidda was too obvious to question, and that, in his opinion, no reply was necessary. [Page 561] He added, however, that he would be glad to look into the matter.

Two days later, the Legation received a note dated April 27, 1942, addressed to the Honorable Alexander Kirk by Shaikh Hamid Sulaiman, Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs, assenting to the establishment of an American Legation in Jidda, and approving my designation as Chargé d’Affaires ad interim during the periods of Mr. Kirk’s absence. A translation of the note is attached hereto as an enclosure.5

As already stated in the Legation’s telegram No. 1 of May 1, 1942, 11:00 a.m.,5 the Legation has been opened to-day, and appropriate notification has been sent to the Saudi Arabian Ministry of Foreign Affairs and to diplomatic missions in Jidda. The Legation does not have supplies and equipment sufficient to permit it to perform consular functions such as passport and visa services, notarials, certification of invoices, etc., and the opening of a combined office will necessarily await the arrival of necessary supplies.

Respectfully yours,

James S. Moose, Jr.
  1. Not printed.
  2. For correspondence on this subject, see pp. 561 ff.
  3. Not printed.
  4. Not printed.