800.014 Antarctic/3–848

The Secretary of State to the British Ambassador ( Inverchapel )

secret

My Dear Mr. Ambassador: I have your letter of March 8, 1948,1 concerning the problems connected with the situation in Antarctica. I have noted the points raised in your letter.

There are two aspects of the situation which in our opinion ought to take precedence at present. First, while we recognize that the United Kingdom and the United States share important interests in Antarctica, we feel that we should approach the other interested countries in the very near future in order to give due weight to their interests in the discussion and working out of a jointly satisfactory solution. Second, we feel that it will be advantageous to the United Kingdom, the United States, and the countries of the Western Hemisphere to have initiated discussions looking toward a settlement prior to the opening of the Bogotá Conference at the end of this month.

I feel sure that you will agree as to the importance of both of these aspects of the problem, and I hope that your Government will find it possible to agree to survey with us the possibilities of working out a jointly satisfactory agreement for some form of international administration. In suggesting this, I do not overlook the existence of real problems which would have to be worked out.

Although I am unable now to comply with your request for a rough outline of our proposals in writing, we would welcome an opportunity for an officer or officers of your Embassy to meet again at their early convenience with the appropriate officers of the Department of State to obtain further background on our thinking.

Sincerely yours,

G. C. Marshall
  1. Not printed.