The Ambassador in Mexico (Messersmith) to the Secretary of State
[Received April 17.]
Sir: I have the honor to refer to my despatch No. 23,909 of April 10, 1945, covering a conversation with the President of Mexico on the matter of loans from the Export-Import Bank for Mexico. It will be recalled that in this despatch I informed the Department that in a conversation with the President of Mexico, he had indicated to me that the preference of the Mexican Government for a loan at this time, since only one loan could be approved by us at this time, would be for the renewal of the twenty million dollar credit for road construction which is still standing, and an additional ten million dollars. It will also be recalled that the President of Mexico indicated that he would convey the necessary instructions to the Minister of Hacienda, Mr. Suárez, now in Washington, to the effect that he could conclude appropriate arrangements for the renewal of the twenty million dollars and the granting of a ten million dollar additional credit for roads.
I have to refer in this connection to the telephone conversation which Mr. Carrigan of the Department had with me in the early morning of April 12, to the effect that Mr. Suárez had informed the appropriate authorities of our Government in Washington that he had received a message by telephone from the President of Mexico to the foregoing effect but that he, Mr. Suárez, after conversation with the President, had succeeded in having the President change this request for a loan for the Mexican National Lines for new equipment. Mr. Carrigan informed me that Mr. Suárez had informed the appropriate authorities of our Government that, in accord with this conversation with the President of Mexico over the telephone, he therefore wished to have remain available the twenty million dollars for roads, which credit is outstanding and available, and in place of asking for any additional money for roads at this time, to ask for the twelve million dollars to fifteen million dollars for railway equipment. According to the statements Mr. Suárez made to our authorities, he [Page 1169] had convinced the President that, all things considered, the railway loan was the most important and immediate at this time.
Mr. Carrigan said that he had been informed by the Export-Import Bank that the papers were ready for signature in the matter of the railway loan and that in view of the instructions which Mr. Suárez had received from the President of Mexico, it was intended to proceed with the signature of the documents in the matter of the railway loan on the afternoon of April 12, unless I saw objection thereto.
I told Mr. Carrigan that, in view of the fact that Mr. Suárez was the Minister of Hacienda of Mexico, and as he had informed the appropriate authorities of our Government that he had these specific instructions from the President of Mexico, subsequent to my conversation with the President, there was no reason to believe that the President of Mexico had not given these instructions to the Minister of Hacienda, and that under the circumstances, I saw no reason why the signature of the documents in connection with a loan for the railways should not proceed on April 12 as planned. Mr. Carrigan stated that under these circumstances it was planned to proceed with the signature of the appropriate documents that day.
In view of the fact that I had informed the Minister of Foreign Relations, Dr. Padilla, of my conversation with the President reported in my despatch No. 23,909, and of the President’s preference for an increase in the road loan, I thought it advisable to immediately inform the Foreign Minister of this development brought to my attention by Mr. Carrigan, and I therefore called on the Foreign Minister at his home early in the morning of April 12, following the conversation with Mr. Carrigan. I did this in view of the fact that I knew that the Foreign Minister was scheduled to have his weekly meeting with the President at noon of that day. The Minister expressed his appreciation of my bringing this matter to his attention and said that in view of the instructions given by the President to the Minister of Hacienda, it was of course entirely proper to proceed with the conclusion of the railway loan instead of the additional ten million dollars for roads at this time.
I have not seen the President since the conversation reported in my despatch No. 23,909, and so do not have any further information as to the reasons why he changed the decision which he communicated to me in the conversation reported in that despatch.