Memorandum by the Assistant Secretary of State for Inter-American Affairs (Miller) to Mr. Henry Dearborn of the Office of South American Affairs


Subject: Call of Argentine Foreign Minister Remorino.

Minister Remorino came in to see me today, accompanied by Mr. Quiros, and stayed for nearly an hour. The conversation was very pleasant and was more specific than I had expected. He said that it was his purpose in accepting what he knew would be a thankless job to [Page 1101] continue to work for improved relations with the United States. He said that despite everything he thought a great deal had been accomplished in the last two years and that he intended to continue the same policy. He also said that with his knowledge of the United States he intended to speak up with the President in favor of the United States on every possible occasion and he assured me that he was a person who would speak his mind and would quit when unnecessary obstacles were put in his path.

I made no comment except to assure Remorino that we understood that he was a sincere friend of this country. For my part, I said that he knew where I stood and I also said that Ambassador Bunker1 had commented favorably on his reception in the capital and on his trip to the provinces.

Remorino said that he would have to reorganize the Foreign Office although he did not specify how. He was going to get a person with political background as the No. 2 man to replace Vittone who is temporarily in office.

He left with me the attached memoranda2 having to do with the proposed Eximbank loan for the steel mill and the purchase of certain equipment for the armed forces. I said that I would look into it.

He then mentioned Argentina’s great desire to be elected to the Economic and Social Council.3 He said that while he would not tell this to anyone else the real reason for Argentina’s aspiration is that the ECOSOC is the council with least possibility of causing embarrassments or trouble for Argentina. They want to get out of the Trusteeship Council because of the difficulties which membership in that group produces internally in view of the large “Turco” groups in Argentina which cause trouble in connection with the Arab States and Libya; the large Jewish population which is interested in Palestine; the large Catholic population which worries about Jerusalem; and the problem of the Falkland Islands which harasses their relations with Great Britain. On the other hand, the ECOSOC had never accomplished anything and this seemed to be the best recommendation for desiring membership on it. The stress which Argentina lays upon getting membership in this group is shown by Remorino’s statement to me that he would go to the General Assembly in Paris next fall only if they are assured of election beforehand. Otherwise Paz will head the delegation.

Remorino indicated that as a quid pro quo for our support in getting them into the ECOSOC, Argentina would back us for the presidency of the COAS. I told him that we had certain reservations as to whether we should accept that job and that we certainly were not going to [Page 1102] campaign for it. This attitude seemed to be a novel one and he was frankly surprised. I told him that it was our practice to accept the designation of the Latin American caucus but he pressed me for some more positive statement which I declined to give. On the contrary, I told him that Argentina’s nonparticipation in specialized agencies of the UN might raise questions as to the suitability of Argentina for membership in a group whose primary function is to supervise the work of the specialized agencies.

Remorino made numerous very favorable references to Ambassador Bunker and said that he was the ideal man for the job in Argentina. He also spoke with unfeigned appreciation of the cooperation which he had always received from the Department.

I accompanied the Ambassador to his car and engaged in the customary violent abrazo. Throughout the conference Memorino made numerous favorable references to Ambassador Paz and said that it would be easy for him to work with Paz. He also made a few very unpleasant references to Cereijo.

  1. Ellsworth Bunker was appointed Ambassador to Argentina on March 13, 1951; he arrived in Buenos Aires April 24, and he assumed charge of the Embassy May 8, the date he also presented his credentials.
  2. Not found with the source text.
  3. Of the United Nations.