710 Conference (W & PW)/2–2345: Telegram

The American Delegation to the Acting Secretary of State

235. From the Secretary. A meeting of the Steering Committee of the Conference was held at Chapultepec Castle at 11 o’clock. A number of resolutions by others of the American Republics were presented and were passed on verbatim to members of the Committee for reading and study. Of these resolutions two were presented by the Cuban delegation, one of them outlining extensively the rights of nations and the other no less fully defining the rights of individuals.

The other business which was to have been transacted at Chapultepec this morning was deferred.

Following the reception offered by the Mexican President at the National Palace, a luncheon meeting of the Steering Committee of the United States delegation consisting of myself, spokesmen for the United States on the various committees (Rockefeller, Berle, Clayton, Taylor, and Hackworth) together with Messersmith, Pasvolsky, Warren and Rayner was held.85 At this meeting the status of the various resolutions to be introduced by the United States was reviewed and a clearance system was agreed upon. Resolutions are due for submission on or before Saturday night. In view of the fact that Mr. Clayton had just arrived, it was decided to ask for an extension of time until Monday for some of the economic resolutions. A discussion took place with regard to the desirability and possibility of placing certain of the United States resolutions with other delegations from the American Republics for introduction to the Conference.

At the plenary session this afternoon the Mexican Foreign Minister gave an extemporaneous address in which, in outlining what he hoped the Conference would achieve, he stressed those measures which he felt would be of lasting benefit to the common man in the Americas. His speech laid great emphasis upon the Conference achieving practical results which would effect as great a defense of unity in peace as [Page 123] had been achieved during the war. He was warmly applauded throughout and his reference to the desirability of the industrialization of the American Republics evoked very considerable applause. In this latter connection he said that it was vital for the Americas to do more than produce raw materials and live in a state of semi-colonialism. His address was helpful and its tone restrained.

I delivered my prepared address and references in it to Cordell Hull and the President were met with enthusiasm. The delegates appeared to appreciate our declared intention not to permit any further extension of Nazi or Fascist doctrine in the Americas and in reference to the necessity of upholding the equal rights of all nations large and small was well received. The speech was translated as delivered. It is my belief that the delegates appreciated this forthright outline of the major points of United States policy and the choice of this Conference as the forum for as important a declaration by this Government.

Addresses were also delivered by the chiefs of delegations from Uruguay,86 Cuba and Ecuador.87

Please repeat to the President. [Stettinius.]

  1. Nelson A. Rockefeller, Assistant Secretary of State; Adolf A. Berle, Jr., Ambassador to Brazil; William L. Clayton, Assistant Secretary of State; Wayne C. Taylor, Acting Secretary of Commerce; Green H. Hackworth, Legal Advisor of the Department of State; George S. Messersmith, Ambassador to Mexico; Leo Pasvolsky, Special Assistant for International Organization and Security Affairs; Avra M. Warren, Director, Office of American Republic Affairs; G. Hayden Raynor, Special Assistant to the Secretary of State.
  2. Jacobo Varela, former Uruguayan Minister for Foreign Affairs.
  3. Camilo Ponce Enriquez, Ecuadoran Minister for Foreign Affairs.