811.24591/15½: Telegram

The Minister in Iran ( Dreyfus ) to the Secretary of State

710. My 642, June 21. General Connolly informed me today that he has been instructed by War Department to take all the time necessary in making his comments on the proposed agreement since “there is no hurry in the matter”; his findings should then be forwarded to War Department by airmail. He stated that he does not see any advantage in signing such an agreement because he is satisfied with the status quo of his command in Iran and because the Americans are bringing only good to Iran through improvements in ports, railways, et cetera, He objected particularly to the clause requiring United States to protect Iran but I explained to him that Iranians will not object to elimination of this provision.

I feel that Connolly’s attitude, which appears to be based on lack of knowledge of international relations, should not be permitted longer to delay consummation of this agreement. Instead of confining [Page 470] himself to consideration of the purely military aspects of the problem, he is concerning himself more than is necessary or proper with the political phases.

Prime Minister yesterday urged me to ask the American Government to proceed with all haste since the Majlis and press are becoming increasingly critical of American operations in Iran without formal agreement covering their presence. A leading editorial in a newspaper on July 4th in taking U.S. to task for failure to conclude an agreement with Iran on the subject stated “Such delay creates suspicion and misunderstanding. It is at variance with the principles laid down in the Atlantic Charter and the principles for which Americans are fighting this war”. This kind of criticism will grow if there is further delay.

I urge that unless we are prepared to accept the historic onus of having occupied Iran for a long period without formal agreement, negotiations be resumed at once and without awaiting General Connolly’s comments.