840.414/9–2845: Airgram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Sweden (Johnson)

A–396. Re your despatch #6150 of September 2899 concerning Swedish Government’s request to examine individuals and documents in Germany regarding German and Swedish Nazi activities in Sweden during war, final action on this request will have to be made by Allied Control Council but Department is opposed in principle to granting such requests. If Swedish request were granted it would presumably set precedent for similar request by Spanish, Portuguese, Irish and Swiss governments. Inasmuch as several high ranking members of certain neutral governments played an active part in assisting Germans prior to and during the war it would seem highly undesirable to make German documents relating to such neutral governments directly available to them inside Germany. In view of above, Department takes the following position:

Department considers it inadvisable to make German records relating to Nazi activities in neutral countries available to investigators of neutral governments by permitting them to examine documents and interrogate individuals inside Germany.
Department prefers to make available to neutral governments such findings of our investigators in Germany as may have a direct bearing on present domestic security in the neutral countries concerned.
Department believes Swedish request under reference should be denied in accordance with points 1 and 2 above.

This airgram is being repeated to Berlin, Moscow, Paris, London Lisbon, Dublin, Bern.

  1. Not printed.