811.34553B/46b: Telegram

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

79. Norweb2 saw Salazar3 December 31 and presented formula for Lagens which was accepted. Salazar was quite agreeable to American personnel proceeding at once to Terceira thereunder. Respecting an American survey party for Santa Maria, Salazar still hoped Horta might prove equally acceptable. He did not view with satisfaction the idea of American or British military personnel proceeding as such to the proposed survey. Norweb suggested that our Government recommend an American company able to carry out the survey, and that the Portuguese Government then invite such company to do so. He agreed to this, and remarked that he supposed the American Army or Navy now exercised some sort of control over all American companies able to carry out a survey of this kind.

Norweb expresses conviction that in view of the spirit in which Salazar accepted this compromise we may feel free to induct members of armed services into company personnel provided a civilian character is preserved.

Salazar again broached the subject of Timor liberation4 and wondered when an answer would be forthcoming. He contrasted his country’s position with that of other European neutrals by remarking that for them the war would end with the termination of European conflict but for Portugal only with conclusion of hostilities in Pacific. [Page 2] Commenting on European War he was under no illusion but that Germany would be defeated and hoped this would be speedily accomplished. The tone of his comments was well-wishing for us and entire interview was in spirit of personal and official cordiality.

  1. R. Henry Norweb, American Minister in Portugal.
  2. Antonio de Oliveira Salazar, President of Portuguese Council of Ministers, Minister of War, and Minister for Foreign Affairs of Portugal.
  3. For previous correspondence regarding Portuguese interest in the liberation of Timor, see Foreign Relations, 1943, vol. ii, pp. 568, 570, 575, and 580.