841.51/8–447

The Secretary of State to the British Chargé ( Balfour )

top secret

My Dear Mr. Chargé d’affaires: In reply to your communication to me of August 2 I wish to inform you that the United States Government is prepared to accept the suggestion of His Majesty’s Government that a discussion should take place forthwith between us, on a high official level, concerning your position and its immediate implications. I assume from your communication that you contemplate sending an official of high rank to Washington for any such discussions.

My Government is in entire agreement with the view expressed in your communication that such discussions should not be regarded as affecting the matters under consideration at the Paris Conference. In order to avoid any misunderstanding on this point my Government feels that any reference to or announcement of such discussions make it clear that they are to deal with problems arising out of the Anglo-American Financial Agreement.

We feel the decision whether or not to invoke Clause 12 of the Anglo-American Financial Agreement is one which, at this juncture, would appear to rest with the British Government. You will understand, however, that this Government could agree to no action under this clause without prior authorization by the Congress.

I agree that it is not necessary at this stage to attempt to define too closely the matters which are to be discussed.1

Faithfully yours,

G. C. Marshall
  1. The texts of this reply and of the British letter of August 2 were sent to London in telegram 3374 on August 6 (841.51/8–647).