Memorandum of Conversation, by the Chief of the Division of Western European Affairs (Culbertson)

Ambassador Cárdenas called to make representations with regard to the fact that Mr. Acheson had recently received Dr. Giral, pointing [Page 1038] out that while he had not received instructions to do so by his Government, he thought that by taking this action he would avoid the receipt of instructions requiring him to make written representations.

He stated that his Embassy had received information to the effect that great pressure was exerted on us to get the Secretary to receive Dr. Giral, and that pressure had come from the American Federation of Labor and the Embassies of those governments which had recognized the Giral “government”, but that as a matter of compromise Mr. Acheson had seen Dr. Giral. I told the Ambassador that I knew nothing about any desire or pressure in connection with Giral seeing the Secretary.

Ambassador Cárdenas further stated that he had heard that during the conversation Mr. Acheson had asked numerous questions with regard to the question of the monarchy. I indicated that while the question of the monarchy had arisen during the course of the discussion, it was not of necessity as a result of inquiries made.

The Ambassador then said that as a personal matter “between friends” could I tell him anything about the prospects in connection with breaking of relations. I told him that while I did not of necessity see any such action at this time, there was no way of foreshadowing what action we might take. I said that under no circumstances could conditions improve so long as Franco and his regime remained in power.

The Ambassador concluded by coming back to the question of Giral and indicated that he hoped he would not get instructions to present a written communication. I told him that I personally hoped that that would not be necessary on his part because there were various reasons underlying our action, and that I doubted whether we would give his Government the satisfaction of a reply to any such communication.