839.415/132: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Haiti (White)

50. Particularly in view of the President’s personal interest in the success of the proposal for the erection of a Peace Monument on the Haitian-Dominican border, I am disappointed that President Lescot should have seen fit to answer President Trujillo’s invitation in a reply evidently couched in the terms quoted in Ciudad Trujillo’s no. 92 of February 14.39 I am seriously concerned lest this cause a further deterioration in Haitian-Dominican relations. Moreover, whatever may have been the background for Lescot’s reply, it seems evident that if the exchange were published, public opinion in this hemisphere outside of Haiti, would inevitably be adversely impressed by it.

You are requested to convey the above thoughts to President Lescot. You should also, unless you perceive objection, express your confidence that the Haitian Government will deal with individual controversies which may arise with the Dominican Republic in the same conciliatory and forbearing spirit that it has generally shown in the past. At a moment when the military operations of the United Nations are approaching their climax, it is vital for them to refrain from disputes between themselves which would mar their harmony and encourage the common enemy. I am convinced that Haiti, in view of its splendid record of collaboration in the joint war effort will appreciate the truth of this and will refrain from any further act which might detract from the single purpose of defeating the Axis at the earliest possible moment.

In view of President Lescot’s attitude, as reported in your telephone conversation with Duggan, it appears necessary to abandon the project to dedicate a monument on the Haitian-Dominican frontier.

[Page 184]

The Department has instructed Ambassador Warren40 to emphasize to President Trujillo the undesirability of publishing the exchange of correspondence regarding the border meeting.

  1. Not printed.
  2. Telegram 76, February 17, 1944, 7 p.m., not printed.