Memorandum by the Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs ( Miller ) to the Director of the Office of Regional American Affairs ( White )1


Subject: Draft Economic Resolutions

I showed Dr. Lleras yesterday our draft economic resolutions, and discussed with him the tactics which should be followed in presenting them to the Conference. In particular, I mentioned Mr. Thorp’s suggestion that we defer putting them in until he could have an opportunity at the first meeting of the Economic Committee Tuesday afternoon of explaining that these resolutions had been prepared after months of consultation with other governments, the purpose of Mr. Thorp’s suggestion being to prevent our draft from being looked upon in the eyes of Latin Americans as a purely United States draft, thus requiring them for purposes of home consumption to try to get numerous changes inserted.

Dr. Lleras agrees that there is something in Mr. Thorp’s point, and also believes that it is essential that from the beginning of the Conference there be a more or less “official” U.S. draft which will eliminate the need of numerous other drafts, some of which might be so expansive in the beginning as to create the illusion that much more was going to be forthcoming.

Consequently, Dr. Lleras suggests a compromise approach, namely, that our three economic resolutions be submitted at the beginning of the Conference, with an explanatory statement which would constitute a summary or preview of Mr. Thorp’s remarks to the effect that our resolutions have been prepared after consultation with the other countries. I attach an outline of such a statement.2

As to the form of the resolutions, I believe they are generally all right,3 but in the Emergency Economic Resolution I have one comment, namely as to the role of IA–ECOSOC. This body is referred to only once in the resolution, in the last paragraph on transportation. It seems to me that it would be preferable to add at the end of the resolution a separate paragraph, giving the IA–ECOSOC a general directive [Page 958] with regard to its continuing functions in all of the different fields covered by the resolution. Thus, the IA-ECOSOC would be given through the Conference a function comparable to the function conferred by the meeting upon the IADB in its field of competence.

  1. Addressed also to Ambassador Merwin L. Bohan, United States Representative to IA–ECOSOC, and Mr. Charles F. Knox, Jr., Consul General at Curaçao, on temporary detail to the Department of State, January 23-April 27, 1951.
  2. Not printed.
  3. In a memorandum to Mr. Miller, dated March 12, 1951, commenting on the draft economic resolutions, Mr. White had stated in part the following: “While the Technical Cooperation and Economic Development Resolutions have been improved, I still regard them as on the cautious side and as inadequate from the standpoint of providing inspiration to the peoples of the Hemisphere.” He had recommended, inter alia, that the “technical Cooperation and Economic Development subjects be incorporated in one strong and comprehensive Resolution based on the ‘Point IV concept’ in the broad sense of the term.” (Miller Files, Lot 53 D 26)