711.35/7–545: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Argentina (Braden)

836. Reurtel 1441, July 5. In consideration the suggestion that President Truman take up the matter of Argentine problems with Premier Churchill, the Department requests more specific information regarding matters in which British cooperation at the present time is inadequate or lacking. Relations between officers of the Department and the British Embassy here have been close and cooperative. It would appear from your various telegrams that your relations with Ambassador Kelly have also been close and that he is disposed to give cooperation. Under these circumstances we feel it important if any [Page 390] representation is to be made to the British that it should be specific and precise.

Telegram from Embassy London repeated to you as London’s 9 of July 275 indicates that British Foreign Office official did not contemplate that authorities concerned would make difficulties about temporary suspension sales aircraft engines to Argentina for military use but that as concerns arms shipments to potential aggressors, the British find it difficult to make distinction between Argentina as a belligerent not cooperating actively in war and other Latin American countries with possible exception of Brazil. We do know that the British here show a strong preoccupation with the importance to them that there should be no interruption in supplies of food products which they are obtaining from Argentina. For this reason they might view with some concern internal disorders of the type threatened by Colonel Perón if they should reach the proportions of interrupting food supplies which are urgently needed in England and Europe. One of the most critical problems of today in this country, England, the liberated areas and throughout the world is that of food supply. Accordingly, neither we nor the British could be expected to take action which would reduce purchases of food in Argentina, or elsewhere.

It is also well known that the British are deeply concerned with their export markets upon which they are dependent for their economic recovery. Presumably, they want to push exports to Argentina of industrial equipment, chemicals, textiles and other products as rapidly as supply condition in Great Britain permits. They would thus be disposed to take action in pushing exports which might impair in some degree any pressure you may be able to exercise through a selective export policy. We have suggested to British Embassy here that British lodge in Ambassador Kelly same authority with respect to their exports to Argentina as you have with respect to ours.

The Department stresses importance your efforts to obtain prompt and effective Argentine action in the elimination of German spearhead firms and in the entire Safehaven program. Colombia, Uruguay and Paraguay are other countries in which the Department will seek to obtain more favorable action in these matters.

Urtel 1445.76 Guarantees for protection correspondents represent at least temporary satisfaction on that problem. In opinion of Department progress made in elimination German spearhead firms and in protecting correspondents are soundest approaches to follow up. If British cooperation lacking in these cases or in such cases as those mentioned [Page 391] other paragraphs this tel Department will consider further your recommendations regarding conversation between President Truman and Premier Churchill.

  1. Telegram 6649, July 2, 7 p.m., from the Ambassador in the United Kingdom, not printed.
  2. July 5, 11 p.m., p. 514.