832.20 Defense/8–1147

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in Brazil

No. 824

Sir: The General Assembly of the United Nations on December 14, 1946 passed by acclamation a resolution on the Principles Governing the General Regulation and Reduction of Armaments (A/267)49 which contained in paragraph 7 the following recommendation:

“It (the General Assembly) recommends the Members to undertake … the withdrawal without delay of armed forces stationed in [Page 411] the territories of Members without their consent freely and publicly expressed in treaties or agreements consistent with the Charter and not contradicting international agreements.”

In the course of the debate in the General Assembly preceding the adoption of the above-mentioned resolution, the interpretation of the term “armed forces” most generally used was one covering all uniformed members of armed services. However, members of the offices of Military and Naval Attachés can be excluded from the definition since their presence is justified by international custom and is covered by the issuance of visas and agreements.

The presence of members of the armed forces of the United States in Brazil attached to the Joint Brazil-United States Military Commission and of members of the armed forces of Brazil in the United States attached to the Joint Brazil–United States Defense Commission is based on Article 1 of the Secret Politico-Military Agreement between the United States and Brazil entered into by an exchange of notes between Ambassador Caffery and Minister for Foreign Affairs Aranha dated May 23 and May 27, 1942.50 It would obviously be inconsistent with national policy for this document to be made public. Consequently, the Department desires to place on record in some other manner the fact that the United States members of the Joint Brazil-United States Military Commission and the Brazilian members of the Joint Brazil-United States Defense Commission are stationed within the territory of Brazil and of the United States with the full consent of the host Government in each case.

You are accordingly instructed to discuss the matter with the Minister for Foreign Affairs51 and endeavor to effect, at the earliest possible opportunity, an exchange of notes covering the presence in Brazil and the United States of the United States and Brazilian members of the Joint Brazil–United States Military Commission and the Joint Brazil–United States Defense Commission, respectively. The text of the note which the Department desires that you address to the Minister for Foreign Affairs, if the Brazilian Government is agreeable to this suggestion, is enclosed.52 It is expected that the Brazilian reply would, of course, be similar in phraseology, mutatis mutandis. You should inform the Minister for Foreign Affairs that it would be the intention of the Department to register the exchange of notes with the United Nations Secretariat.

Should the Foreign Minister suggest any changes in the wording of the proposed exchange of notes, you are requested to advise the Department [Page 412] promptly by telegraph and await its instructions before proceeding further.

Very truly yours,

For the Secretary of State:
Norman Armour
  1. For the positions of the various powers in the United Nations Assembly on this disarmament resolution, see the United Nations, Official Records of the General Assembly, First Session, Second Part, Plenary Meetings, pp. 1289–1308, 1310–1316. For the text of this resolution, see United Nations, Official Records of the General Assembly, First Session, Second Part, Resolutions Adopted by the General Assembly during the Second Part of the First Session, pp. 65–67.
  2. For an explanatory note on this exchange, see Foreign Relations, 1942, vol. v, p. 662.
  3. Raul Fernandes.
  4. Not printed.