852.48/1441: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Spain (Hayes)

577. Reference 576, March 11 [10?]. Since it appears from Malaise’s statement that dollars are needed to buy the pesetas desired for the French refugees, it is suggested that the French African administration provide the necessary dollars out of their funds in the United States. For your information, the Giraud25 administration has approximately $50,000,000 in accounts here. Treasury is prepared to issue the requisite licenses for this purpose. Malaise need simply request the Foreign Exchange Institute in Spain to furnish pesetas against dollars to be transferred from the French African accounts here to the Institute account here.

If Malaise should have any difficulty in buying $500,000 worth of pesetas from the Institute against dollars, you are authorized to take appropriate steps to support his request.

We are anxious to effect the arrangements outlined above in preference to securing further appropriation of American funds for this [Page 269] purpose. We will advise you respecting funds for declared Americans after receipt of information concerning above proposal. If arrangements can be made for French North African regime to assume financial responsibility for French refugees as indicated above, we are agreeable to your taking whatever steps necessary to assist in the administration of such relief and authorize use of McDonald’s26 services for that purpose.

  1. Gen. Henri Giraud, French Civil and Military Commander in Chief in North Africa.
  2. Charles McDonald, official representative of Foreign Relief and Rehabilitation Operations at the American Embassy in Spain, formerly with the American Red Cross.