710. Consultation 4/9–3047: Airgram

The Chargé in Honduras ( Montamat ) to the Secretary of State


A–208. Following reaction has been noted locally to Rio Conference for Maintenance of Continental Peace and Security:

Foreign Minister Lainez September 23 mentioned to me that he considered the Rio Conference “had been a great success, providing the juridical basis for inter-American cooperation against any aggressor as well as sanctions and the employment of force to repel such aggression”. Mentioning that the Act of Chapultepec “had laid the basic foundation, that the Rio Conference provided the next story, and that the Bogotá Conference would complete the structure”, he suggested that while the written agreement between the American Republics was of great importance, of even greater importance was the attitude of the various countries toward the subject. It was his feeling, he said, that no contract or agreement was necessarily worth much if the contracting powers were not “spiritually” disposed to cooperate; in his view the contracting powers this time were “spiritually” so disposed.
Minister of Public Education, Professor Angel Hernández, one of the three Honduran delegates to the Conference, in an interview published in the September 25 issue of Diario Comercial of San Pedro Sula (practically the only newspaper in the country worthy of the name), referred in most favorable terms to the accomplishments of the Conference. He stated that the drafting of paragraph (b) of Article IX of the Treaty “constituted a triumph of the Honduran delegation” since at its insistence the phrase “or arbitral award” (laudo arbitral) was added. Despite this triumph, Hernández said, the Honduran delegation signed the Treaty with the “respective reservation”.
When questioned concerning Russia, Professor Hernández is reported [Page 88] as stating that he had nothing to say officially since Russia was not dealt with at the Conference. He could add personally, however, that he thought the attitude of Russia, as revealed by recent developments, “does not accord with the spirit of almost all the agreements and declarations signed by Russia during the war nor with many of the provisions of the United Nations Charter”. Respecting his own draft American Educational Charter for Peace, which was apparently approved unanimously, Dr. Hernández revealed delight, as he has on other occasions, over its success.
(The other delegates, Ambassador Cáceres and Minister Batres, both now in Tegucigalpa, have also on occasion signified their high satisfaction with the results of the Conference.)
The Honduran press has invariably referred favorably to the accomplishments of the Conference on such few occasions when it has been mentioned.