810.20 Defense/1–3145: Telegram

The Ambassador in Chile ( Bowers ) to the Secretary of State

148. I attended the closing meeting of the conversations between the staffs of the Armed Forces of the United States and Chile this afternoon. The conversations have been conducted in an atmosphere of the greatest cordiality and frankness, and the closing meeting was as cordial as the first. The report of General Smith and Admiral Merrill will be sent by pouch. It was clearly indicated from the beginning that the conversations were exploratory and of course no decisions made. All matters touching the political were referred to me and there was but one, the proffered alliance, with which the Department is now familiar. The military and naval representatives were meticulously correct in their attitude toward the Embassy making association with them officially pleasant.

An amplification on General Brett’s plan concerning a commission for representing the three branches of the Armed Forces instead of a separate naval mission which alarmed me at first, in view of the British offer twice made to send a naval mission, has been clarified and I am informed that the plan proposed meets with the acquiescence of Admiral Merino,21 which is all that is necessary.

General Smith and Admiral Merrill leave on the 2nd. The books will be closed tomorrow. Outstanding data from the Chileans desired was promised today for this afternoon. The general effect of the conferences has been most salutary and helpful all around.

  1. Commander in Chief of the Chilean Navy.