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

No. 3801

Sir: For your background information there is enclosed some material34 relating to informal exploratory conversations between officials of the United States and Canada which took place at Washington from January 3 to 7, 1944. These conversations covered the same subjects as the earlier United States–United Kingdom conversations of which a summary statement was sent you with the Department’s instruction of November 8, 1944 [1943]35 and were of an equally tentative and confidential nature. The United States Government had not formulated any position on the questions discussed, and the American officials participating in the discussions did so in their individual capacities.

The enclosed papers consist primarily of agenda and studies prepared in connection with the United States–Canadian discussions of cartels and of international commodity arrangements. No summary statement covering these discussions of the sort covering the United States–United Kingdom discussions has been prepared, nor have papers similar to the enclosed been prepared covering the discussions with the Canadians on commercial policy.36 None of the enclosed papers in any sense indicates the position of the United States Government. They were prepared by individual officials of the United States Government solely to facilitate the United States–Canadian discussions referred to and possible future discussions of these subjects. They have had no general clearance and in some instances may be at variance with official positions which may be ultimately adopted by the United States Government.

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In as much as the enclosed papers are similar in nature to the incidental papers previously prepared in connection with the United States–United Kingdom discussions referred to above, and in as much as the United States–United Kingdom discussions are summarized in the statement sent you on November 8, it is not considered necessary, for your adequate information on this subject, to send you the incidental papers prepared in connection with the United States–United Kingdom discussions, particularly since these papers are rather bulky and in many instances were prepared for the sole purpose of use during the discussions.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
Dean Acheson
  1. Not attached to file copy.
  2. Foreign Relations, 1943, vol. i, p. 1115.
  3. A summary statement of United States–Canadian discussions on commercial policy was transmitted to London in instruction 3854, March 15; no copy of this statement found in Department files.