740.0011 European War 1939/31888

The Minister in Ethiopia (Caldwell) to the Secretary of State

No. 6

Sir: I have the honor to report that today Mr. Yilma Deressa, Vice Minister of Finance, called by appointment to inform me, on behalf of the Emperor, that: an offer of the Ethiopian Government, made over a year ago through the British Minister here, to send a battalion of Ethiopian troops to join the forces of the United Nations on any of their fronts, was answered recently (as Mr. Deressa had informed me on September 17, 1943) with the statement that the offer could not be accepted unless the British Military Mission were retained in Ethiopia; the Ethiopian Government preferred to have the mission replaced by Military advisors attached to the Ministry of War, and paid by, and under the control of, the Ethiopian Government as in the case of the British advisors to various government departments at present, the Ethiopian Government claiming that the present system is not satisfactory to them because of the independence which it gives to the British Military Mission.

Although the Ethiopian Government considered that the condition made by the British was irrelevant to the offer of troops, the Ethiopian Government finally accepted the condition. Nevertheless, a few days ago the Ethiopian Government was informed that Ethiopian troops could not be accepted, as there is no place for them in the forces of the United Nations.

Respectfully yours,

J. K. Caldwell