Memorandum of Conversation, by the Secretary of State
The Ambassador of the Netherlands called at his request. He brought up the question of the pending application of the Netherlands Government for a loan of $300,000,000 from this Government mainly for post-war purposes. He presented the usual arguments at some length in support of the application. I interrupted him from time to time to say that this Department really did not have any, or at the most five or ten percent, of the function to which the application related; that the main jurisdiction was with the Treasury Department, R.F.C., and the President I elaborated a little to show that this was purely a matter of loan policy by this Government to another Government primarily for post-war purposes. The Ambassador said that this request was different from what might be made by other countries for the reason that this would be a gilt-edged transaction backed by full collateral, as I knew, and that, therefore, it would not involve a precedent which other nations might cite in pressing their claims for similar loans. I expressed some doubt on that point.
The Ambassador made some references to certain phases of the European situation, which he considered secret and not for the record. They were not of unusual interest however.