The Secretary of State to the War Shipping Administrator ( Land )

My Dear Admiral Land: With reference to the situation in Bolivia, the Department has not as yet authorized the recognition of the revolutionary government in La Paz82 and proposes to withhold such action for the immediate present.

I have written a letter to Mr. Leo Crowley83 indicating the policy to be followed in our economic relations with Bolivia and requesting that certain action be taken in matters of export control.

The requested procedures include that the Foreign Economic Administration hold without action until further notice all applications for license to export to Bolivia. Paralleling that action, I request that the War Shipping Administration hold without action until further notice all applications for freight space for goods destined for Bolivia which have been certified by the Foreign Economic Administration to the War Shipping Administration, not to issue ODT84 Permits in connection therewith and not to facilitate further bookings for merchandise which may be already listed on the Cargo Eligibility Lists.

The Department is giving serious consideration to requesting the War Shipping Administration to instruct its port representatives to take up, as quietly as possible, with individual ship operators the holding back of existing Bolivian cargo for which space has already been booked, and the substitution of cargo for other West Coast of South American ports. It is recognized that it might be impossible short of cancellation of all outstanding export licenses to prevent the loading of certain timber on the West Coast and other products on ships fixed for sailing in the immediate future. The Department is still considering whether either the former or the latter steps should be [Page 497] taken and requests that no action be taken of this sort pending a further communication to you.

At the present time the Department does not consider it advisable to make any public announcement of the control measures indicated above and it is requested that the War Shipping Administration not issue any bulletin or administrative order for public consumption revealing the action to be taken.

It is suggested that details relating to this policy be taken up by your staff with the Department through the regular liaison channels. I shall be pleased to inform you from time to time regarding developments in Bolivia and in our policy towards the revolutionary government.

Sincerely yours,

Cordell Hull
  1. For correspondence on the recognition problem, see pp. 427 ff.
  2. Foreign Economic Administrator; letter of December 24, 1943, not printed.
  3. Office of Defense Transportation.