810.20 Defense/9–445: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Columbia (Wiley)

871. Your 1160, Sept 4.20 Dept wishes to emphasize that conversations will be purely exploratory dealing only with technical military matters and involving no political or military commitments. It is unlikely that any approach to Presidential level will be necessary.

After formal opening sessions conversations will break down into ground, air, and naval committees for exchange of information and will be conducted by officers on a technical level. In view of these facts Dept considers it most advisable for actual conversations to be in hands of lower-ranking officers in dealings with Colombian officers of similar rank. General Brett, in opening conversations in other countries, stayed only for formalities. It is appropriate that this procedure be followed in Colombia.

As Senior Diplomatic representative of United States in Colombia, you will be in position to guide conversations from policy viewpoint and to consider and handle any political questions which may arise. Any approach to President that might be necessary would of course be through you.

  1. Not printed; in this telegram the Ambassador expressed the view that the American naval and military representatives should be of a rank sufficient to have access to presidential level (810.20 Defense/9–445).