The Ambassador in Brazil (Caffery) to the Secretary of State

No. 16381

Sir: With reference to my despatch No. 15866 of May 15, 1944,93 and previous correspondence concerning the disposal of used construction equipment to the Brazilian Government, I have the honor to enclose copy of a self-explanatory letter93 which I addressed yesterday to General Ralph H. Wooten,94 based upon new information on the subject which was brought to light at a conference which I had with General Wooten and Lieutenant Colonel J. T. Knight95 yesterday.

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As I have repeatedly stressed, it is of prime importance that the price exacted from the Brazilian Government for this material be reasonable and it has been my impression all along that the price we were asking was too high (my despatch No. 15025 of March 20, 1944). Yesterday’s conference clearly confirmed that impression. In view of the importance of the successful conclusion of the military aviation agreement, for which no quid pro quo has been definitely asked by the Brazilians, I strongly recommend that the used construction equipment in question, which both General Wooten and Colonel Knight state was second-hand when it arrived in Brazil and is now by and large in a very run-down condition, be turned over to the Brazilian Government, the latter standing only the cost of transportation, repairs, etc. This is especially desirable since it is estimated that those expenses will amount to at least 60% of the cost price.

Respectfully yours,

Jefferson Caffery
  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Commanding General, United States Army Forces, South Atlantic.
  4. District and Theater Engineer, United States Army Forces, South Atlantic.