841.244/8–2544: Telegram

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary of State

us urgent

6927. In following up my 6510 of August 141 I am cabling you below the text of a letter dated August 25 which I have received from Mr. Eden regarding the meat negotiations and the freezing of Argentine funds:

“Thank you for your letter of the 14th August2 containing the State Department’s suggestions as to the handling of our meat negotiations with Argentina, the freezing of Argentine funds in the United States and the discontinuance by our two Governments of all nonessential purchases of Argentine products.

I had already heard from Law about his conversation with Stettinius.3 We are fully alive to the desirability of not allowing the Argentines to derive any unnecessary comfort from the renewal of our meat contract, and we are consulting the Ministry of Food as to what we can do to meet this point. I hope to be able to let you have our reply in a few days.

On the question of the freezing of Argentine funds contemplated by your Government, I note that action has now been taken by the United States Treasury that has the effect of placing Argentina in the same class as other neutrals whose funds have been frozen. As the State Department appreciate, His Majesty’s Government themselves apply similar restrictions to Argentina as a neutral.

We could clearly not wish to discourage your Government from discontinuing any inessential purchases from Argentina at the present juncture. We should, however, hope that, if it is decided to take such [Page 165] action, it will be taken in the spirit of the quiet period which we have advocated.

I shall be very surprised if it is found that we ourselves are making any purchases in Argentina which are not essential for the prosecution of the war or the maintenance of the essential economy of this country. I am, however, consulting the Ministry of Supply on this point and will let you have a reply in a few days.”

  1. Not printed (835.01/8–1444).
  2. Not printed.
  3. See Foreign Relations, 1944, vol. vii, pp. 342, 343.