811.3381/9–1546: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Diplomatic Agent at Tangier (Alling)

top secret

296. Original purpose naval visits French North African ports was to remind Arabs of US interest in that part of world at time when they are being tempted join forces with communists. French refusal of permission for air shows was result of fear of communists’ counter demonstrations in North Africa on one hand and violent objections of French air minister on the other.

In view of urtel 35816 however Dept suggesting to Navy that decision regarding air show Tangier be left to your and Admiral Cassady’s17 discretion. Considering recent disturbances Tangier Arabs we would consider air show inadvisable if likelihood that Arabs would interpret it as answer to their recent demonstrations. You are best position to judge what local Arab reaction might be.

Recent Navy Dept order authorizes air shows only when request initiated by government of country to be visited. We are informing Navy that in case of Tangier your request is sufficient provided no other member of Administration objects.18

Sent Tangier as No. 296, repeated Paris as no. 4849.

  1. Presumably, reference is to telegram 348, September 14, 1946, from Tangier reporting on the unlikelihood of further native demonstrations similar to those which had recently taken place (881.00/9–1446).
  2. Rear Adm. John H. Cassady, Commander, Carrier Division, U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
  3. In telegram 353, September 21, 1946, from Tangier, Mr. Alling reported that he and Admiral Cassady had informed the local authorities that in view of the warm reception given the U.S.S. Franklin D. Roosevelt on its visit to Tangier they hoped to reciprocate by having routine air exercises in appreciation. The local officials expressed pleasure, and the demonstration was scheduled for September 23. (811.3381/9–2146)