800.796/7–1745: Telegram

No. 1187
The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Acting Secretary of State1

secret

7182. With reference to the Embassy’s telegrams2 reporting various efforts on the part of the British to have steps taken which would lead to a fairly early agreement on the commercial aspects of air transport with the United States, Sir William Hildred informed the Civil Air Attaché3 that he hoped and expected to be able to go to the United States between now and August 2 (when the Civil Aviation Radio Conference opens) partly in connection with setting up of the Interim Council4 but primarily to discuss the Fifth Freedom5 with Pogue and Warner. The Department will observe that Sir William made this statement a day or two after the closing of the Empire Aviation conference and that the suggestion is now not that Pogue come to England but that Hildred go to the United States. He said frankly that he believed he would be more successful in obtaining Swinton’s approval for the trip, which he had been unable to do before, in view of the “progress in thinking” which the Empire Aviation Conference developed. He said he thought that the British Government would agree to an arrangement with the United States and with other countries which set forth the principle that (1) the more international air transportation the better for mankind[,] (2) all economic and other burdensome restrictions on civil aviation should be removed and (3) the principle of the Fifth Freedom in general was necessary to the successful development of air transportation. He felt that where it could be demonstrated that the unrestricted exercise of short-range pickup traffic by strong nations destroyed or seriously upset some regional airlines, the Interim Council should be able to rectify such obvious injustices. He thought that the major international airlines would recognize sufficiently the value to them of prosperous feeder line services along their routes so that they would be careful not to put them out of business. Sir William stressed the necessity of keeping the foregoing strictly confidential.

Winant
  1. The gist of this message was included in telegram No. 65 of July 19 from Grew to Byrnes (file No. 800.00 Summaries/7–1945).
  2. Not printed.
  3. Livingston Satterthwaite.
  4. Of the Provisional International Civil Aviation Organization.
  5. See vol. i, document No. 547.