711.35/7–1145: Telegram

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

928. ReEmbtel 1498, July 11. Dept has no question as to necessity for British American cooperation in Argentina. To this end, Assistant Secretaries Dunn and Rockefeller had a meeting with Lord Halifax89 in December 194490 at which there was complete mutual understanding. This understanding was confirmed by the Dept’s Staff Committee and by Foreign Minister Eden. Dept believes that in practice this cooperation has been extremely good.

Dept considers that this is a suitable occasion for a conversation between President and Churchill on the subject of Argentina and hence is transmitting to the Secretary copy of your 1498, June [July] 11, and recommending that he ask the President to say to Churchill that this Govt is most appreciative of the cooperation which his Govt has shown in connection with the Argentine problem; that this Govt views that situation with deep concern; that this Govt. through the BritEmb Washington, has urged that Ambassador Kelly be given the same authority to screen Brit exports to Argentina which we have given to you; and that this Govt hopes the Brit FonOff may find it possible to adopt this procedure which will enable our two Ambassadors to make still more effective their cooperation. (Copies being forwarded you by airmail.)

Re London tel. 6649, July 2 to Dept.91 Principal indication which has come to us of Brit reluctance to go along with us completely has arisen in connection vdth export policy and particularly armaments. This has been taken up with BritEmb here and has been occasion for suggestion that authority over exports be vested in Ambassador Kelly. It is Dept’s belief that if this action is taken, you and Ambassador Kelly together should be able to handle this matter satisfactorily.

Dept will always be glad at any time to take up with Brit at appropriate level matters in which their cooperation is inadequate.

Dept calls to your attention that Argentina altered her basic foreign policy when called upon to do so by a united hemisphere and that the decisions reached at Mexico City have formed the principal basis for the positions which you have taken with the Argentine Govt. It [Page 396] considers that the continued unity of the hemisphere is essential. It therefore welcomes references in your telegrams to consultations with the Ambassadors of the other American Republics. You are urged to avail yourself of every appropriate opportunity for such consultation.

Dept is in entire agreement with you that the establishment of effective democracy in Argentina may be a slow process in view of past 20 years in Argentine history. It considers it in the interest of the US to use its legitimate influence to encourage that process. For this reason, it commends the various positions which you have taken with marked success in connection with press freedom, political prisoners, and democratic principles.

ReDeptel 836, July 9. Dept stresses again urgent importance of pressing for elimination of Axis firms and influence and Safehaven program. As pointed out by Assistant Secretary Clayton in his testimony June 2592 the task of destroying the economic basis of German aggression is one which requires vigorous and simultaneous action. Dept is considering sending a special mission to the field to see what can be done to expedite action in these countries where the program is lagging. Not only are these measures a vital part of war policy of this Govt with respect to Germany, but the weakening of German political and economic strength in Argentina should contribute to our foreign policy objectives with respect to Argentina (re Paragraph 3, Section B, your 1498, July 11).

For your info our Embassies in Paraguay and Uruguay report recent substantial progress in these matters.93

Dept reserves comment for present on Paragraph 9, your 1498, July 11.

  1. British Ambassador in the United States.
  2. At this meeting, according to a memorandum of conversation of December 23, 1944, the British Ambassador was informed about the impending conference at Mexico City and was assured that the conference was not being held for the purpose of developing an American bloc to the detriment of British interests in the Western Hemisphere (711.41/12–2344).
  3. Not printed.
  4. Made before the Subcommittee on War Mobilization of the Senate Committee on Military Affairs; for text, see Department of State Bulletin July 1, 1945, p. 21.
  5. For documentation regarding the concern of the United States in the control or elimination of Axis interests and activities in Paraguay and Uruguay, see pp. 1299 ff. and pp. 1387 ff., respectively.