The Ambassador in France (Caffery) to the Secretary of State

top secret
No. 9644

Sir: I have the honor to refer to my top secret telegram No. 4118 of September 23, 1947,2 and to my top secret despatch No. 9658 of the same date, concerning the Foreign Office policy memorandum and the twenty-five appendices thereto, concerning French North Africa, which M. Jean Chauvel, Secretary General of the Foreign Office, gave me recently. I now have the honor to forward a full translation of the policy statement and an extensive and comprehensive summary of the appendices.3

Should the recommendations made in my despatch referred to above, meet with the Department’s approval, and should the French definitely accept the suggestion of a time table for Morocco and Tunisia, it would then seem highly advisable that consideration be given to the second aspect of the recommendations made by the North African meeting held at Paris, June 16–19, 1947, namely: United States approach to Moslem Nationalist leaders and United States approach to the Arab League.

Now that French policy appears to be evolving materially and favorably according to our views, it would be especially unfortunate should outbreaks of violence occur and cause perhaps irreparable damage just when, and for the first time, it appears possible to hope for a democratic evolution of Morocco and Tunisia along commonsense lines not only in the best true interests of the populations involved but also in the best interests of American security and of stability in this strategic area.

While always delicate to approach, it would seem that Tunisian and Moroccan Nationalist leaders could well be informed of our position in accordance with Part IV of the North African meeting recommendations (I refer to the Embassy’s despatch No. 9033 of June 20, 1947). It [Page 710] might also be possible for our representatives to stress the strong belief that they would best serve the interests of their people should they cooperate sincerely with the French along the path of orderly and progressive evolution rather than by maintaining their present negative attitude of insisting on “all or nothing” immediately.

Respectfully yours,

Jefferson Caffery
  1. Telegram 4285, October 3, 1 p. m., from Paris, explained that this despatch was then being sent by courier. Apparently it was not ready earlier.
  2. Infra.
  3. Enclosures not printed.