811.20 Defense (M) Spain/1230: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Spain (Hayes)

205. The Department and FEA20 have considered Embassy’s no. 155 of January 18 and 198 of January 21 and also British Arfar no. 64 of January 18.21 We have not cleared the following views with the British Embassy here, but we attach such importance to limiting the movement of wolfram to the enemy that we do not wish to withhold instructions to you while attempting to clear the matter with the British in Washington. However, the British Embassy here has been advised of the contents of this telegram and will wire London urgently.

The following are the views of the Department and FEA as to the course of action to be pursued:

It is, of course, impossible at this time to foresee precisely what action the Spanish authorities will eventually take upon our demand for a wolfram embargo. It is consequently felt that we must proceed, for the time being at least, upon the assumption that there will be no embargo and that all-out preemption is our only course.
Accordingly, it is considered by the Department and FEA to be extremely important that every endeavor be made by the USCC22 and UKCC23 staffs to purchase or otherwise tie up all available wolfram at least during the course of the next 2 or 3 months, utilizing all available resources immediately for this purpose and increasing prices to such extent as you consider necessary.
We do not feel in a position to give you instructions as to the precise methods to be pursued and prefer to leave the tactics to your discretion. In order to extend your limited peseta availments to the maximum, we suggest that you utilize to the fullest extent blocked sterling and dollars and also where necessary the special commodity.
You may also in your discretion use the threat of blacklisting against Fierro and such other producers as you desire. Please telegraph your recommendations on this point.
It would appear highly desirable to have arrangements made to move the wolfram to shipping points as quickly as possible.

  1. Foreign Economic Administration.
  2. None printed.
  3. United States Commercial Company.
  4. United Kingdom Commercial Corporation.