Memorandum by the Director of the Office of Near Eastern and African Affairs (Henderson) to the Secretary of State
Pursuant to your suggestion of November 12, I attach a secret office memorandum, entitled “Replies of the President,”3 recording [Page 12]the substance of remarks and comments made by the President, the Ministers and Consul General and myself during this half-hour visit.
Appended to the memorandum is a substantially verbatim transcript of the statement read to the President by Minister Wadsworth,4 as spokesman for the group, outlining their common problems in the area.
This statement concludes with four specific basic questions in the policy field with respect to which the Ministers and Consul General would greatly appreciate your directives in elaboration of the general guidance given them by the President.
In brief, the President:
- Recognized the importance of the Arab countries “in our positive postwar foreign-policy thinking” and the desire of each “to run its own show” applying freely “the principle of equality of opportunity and the Open Door.”
- Indicated his agreement as to the existence of parallelism between our policies and those of Russia in the area.
- Approved, in principle, the signature with the Arab countries of “the same sort of standard treaty of friendship and commerce as we have signed with other American and European countries.”
- Agreed, in principle, that Arab Governments’ requests for “competent American technical experts—be they financial, technical or military—will be sympathetically received.”
- Confirmed his willingness to receive the King of Egypt so soon as mutually agreeable arrangements therefor be concluded.5
- Commented that, for his part, he would be happy to receive during the coming year official visits from the Presidents of Syria and Lebanon.
- Gave the Ministers and Consul General considerable helpful comment on the thorny problem of Palestine.
I venture, in concluding this memorandum, to ask your special guidance as to whether the Syrian and Lebanese Ministers in Washington may now be told that they may inform their respective Chiefs of State of the President’s comment (paragraph 6 above) and ask them respectively to suggest one or two dates on which they might find it convenient to make these visits. Mr. Wadsworth confirms my assumption that each of the two Presidents would wish to make his visit independently of the other but that they would no doubt consult together before suggesting possible dates therefor.6
I should also appreciate receiving your approval to my sending to interested offices in the Department and in the field a copy of the [Page 13]group’s prepared statement together with a résumé of the ensuing conversation along the lines of the seven numbered paragraphs above.7
In the circumstances I venture to suggest that you read the two attached relatively short but important papers. The Ministers and Consul General ask me to say that they would appreciate highly your finding the time to do so at your convenience.
- Annex 2 to this memorandum.↩
- Annex 1 to this memorandum.↩
- In telegram 1679, August 31, 1945, 8 p.m., the Secretary of State had informed Cairo of Presidential approval of an official visit by King Farouk, the date fixed tentatively for November 1 (883.001 Farouk/8–3145). The King, however, was unable to make the visit at the suggested time.↩
- On December 29, 1945, notes were sent to the Lebanese and Syrian Ministers conveying President Truman’s invitations to the Presidents of Lebanon and Syria to visit the United States.↩
- Copies of the statement and of the résumé were sent to Cairo, Beirut, Jidda, and Jerusalem under cover of letters from Mr. Henderson, according to notes dated February 19, 1946, attached to the two documents.↩
- For documentation on the attitude of the United States toward the question of Arab union, see pp. 25 ff.↩
- The reference is to the incorporation in the Anglo-Egyptian Treaty of Friendship and Alliance of August 26, 1936, and in the Anglo-Iraqi Treaty of Alliance of June 30, 1930, of stipulations that the British Ambassadors in Egypt and Iraq were to have precedence over the diplomatic representatives of other powers. For further information on this subject, see memorandum of October 29, 1945, by the Chief of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs, p. 21.↩
- For information on the visit to the United States by Prince Abdul Ilah in May and June 1945, see footnote 13, p. 5; for documentation on the visit of Amir Faisal July 31–August 1, 1945, see pp. 1000 ff.↩
- For documentation on the attitude of the United States toward the Arab-Zionist controversy concerning Palestine and toward the question of Jewish immigration into Palestine, see pp. 678 ff.↩
In telegram 2286, December 11, 1945, 8 a.m., Minister Tuck, who had returned to Cairo, advised the Department that he had informed King Farouk the preceding day “of my recent conversation with President Truman with regard to the proposed visit to the United States. I said the President would be happy to receive him officially and any tentative date which the King would propose for a visit would be submitted to the White House and if it worked in with the President’s plans an official invitation would be forthcoming.
“The King expressed his sincere pleasure with this arrangement and promised to inform me as soon as he felt he could undertake the journey.” (883.001–Farouk/12–1145)↩
- President Truman and British
Prime Minister Clement R. Attlee, in November 1945, held
discussions in Washington, primarily on the control of atomic
energy; for documentation on these discussions, see
Foreign Relations, 1945, vol. ii, pp. 61– 75, passim.↩
- For documentation
on interest of the United States in the relief and rescue of
Jews in Germany and German-occupied territory, see
ii, pp. 1119 ff.↩
- Delivered in Central Park, New York City, on October 27, 1945, in connection with the celebration of Navy Day; for text, see Department of State Bulletin. October 28, 1945, p. 653.↩