740.0011 European War 1939/28920: Telegram

The Ambassador in Bolivia (Boal) to the Secretary of State

691. A brief Associated Press despatch under dateline Washington April 9 appeared in the La Paz newspaper El Diario April 10 stating that the Secretary of State Cordell Hull in a press conference had excused himself from making any comment on the entry of Bolivia into a state of war with the explanation that this action requires Bolivian congressional approval.

While this action does formally require Bolivian congressional approval it appears to be the general feeling throughout the Bolivian administration that the presidential power to order mobilization provides as much authority for Bolivian administration as it would in any event wish to exercise even after a possible formal declaration of war by the Bolivian Congress. Although there has been some incidental newspaper and other comment indicating doubt concerning the constitutionality of the action of the Bolivian administration I believe it is the general expectation that the measure will not be seriously questioned and that there will be a pro forma indorsement by the Bolivian Congress possibly several months from now.