710 Consultation 4/9–847

Memorandum of Conversation, by the Chairman of the United States Delegation (Marshall)

Participants: Dr. Arturo Despradel, Dominican Foreign Minister
Secretary Marshall
Major Vernon A. Walters

At Hotel Quitandinha, August 26, at 10: 30 a.m.

After the customary exchange of greetings, Dr. Despradel stated that he wished to reiterate to me what he had stated on the very first day of the Conference, i.e., that he had received instructions from his President7 to cooperate with the U.S. Delegation in every way possible for the success of the Conference. He stated that the Dominicans would do nothing that would in any way obstruct the work of the Conference and that for this reason, although they had had differences with Cuba, of which he presumed I was aware, they would not bring this matter up at the Conference, as it would only invite controversies and cause difficulties. He stated that perhaps in due time this might be taken up with some of the Pan American organizations. He stated that he wanted me to have a copy of the conciliatory telegram sent by his President to President Grau San Martín of Cuba and handed me a [Page 65] copy of this telegram. He stated that if the Conference would discuss matters not on the agenda it would last indefinitely.

I asked him if he had any comments to make on the work of the Conference, and he stated that the Mexican suggestion of regional security zones had some advantages but might invite controversy, and if this were the case, the Dominicans would not do anything to stimulate such controversy.

I inquired of Dr. Despradel when he thought the Conference would be able to conclude its work. He stated that two of the committees had almost concluded their work, and that the third committee would conclude its work by the 28th of August. I asked if he believed it would take that long. He felt it would be possible for all committees to conclude their work by the 27th but he felt that the 28th was a more probable date.

I inquired concerning the economic situation of the Dominican Republic with special regard to crops. He stated that their crops were exceedingly good. The coffee crop was larger than the previous year’s, and the tobacco crop was also excellent, and the same was true of the cacao crop. Dr. Despradel stated that at the time he left the Dominican Republic an eight million dollar budget surplus was foreseen for this fiscal year. He stated that they intended to pay off the foreign debt this year. This was being handled by the Guarantee Trust Company, and that even after such foreign debt were paid off there would still remain a budget surplus.

I inquired concerning the situation in Haiti and Dr. Despradel informed me that the present administration was doing a very fine job in the line of developing Haitian agriculture.

  1. Rafael Leonidas Trujillo.