811.34537/386: Telegram

The Chargé in Cuba ( Briggs ) to the Secretary of State

292. Department’s No. 239, May 7, 3 [9] p.m., and my telephone conversation this morning with Ambassador Braden.26

The proposal outlined in the foregoing telegram is of such scope that I do not believe it would be desirable for any discussion thereof to be undertaken by General Ryan during his forthcoming preliminary survey but that if in the light of his findings and subsequent full consideration of all the implications by the interested agencies of our Government it is desired to go forward, the project then be broached officially. I shall accordingly suggest to General Ryan that he confine his statements to Cuban officials to the fact that he is making exploratory and preliminary investigation of certain air facilities.

In particular I believe it would be undesirable to include in the proposal the limitation mentioned in the last sentence of paragraph 2 of the above telegram. Numerous Cuban pilots are receiving instruction in the United States at the present time and to state at the outset that a project of this scope undertaken in Cuba and requiring for its successful development whole-hearted cooperation by the Cuban Government would not be available to any Cuban citizens would in my opinion cause the worst possible impression and even adversely affect future cooperation on other matters.

  1. The appointment of Spruille Braden as Ambassador to Cuba was confirmed on December 19, 1941. He arrived in Havana to assume his duties May 15, 1942.