ODA files, lot 62 D 225, “Trust Territory of Pacific”

The United States Representative at the United Nations (Lodge) to the Assistant Secretary of State for United Nations Affairs (Key)


Dear Dave: The petition from the Marshall Islands inhabitants has raised three questions in my mind which the Department of State and Department of Interior may wish to consider among others:

Is there any support for Ralph Bunche’s impression, which we reported to the Department, that this Petition was too perfect to have originated with the Islanders themselves without outside inspiration?
Why should the first reaction of the Islanders be to petition the United Nations rather than the President of the United States? Does this reflect outside inspiration? Does it reflect a complete lack of confidence in the U.S. Government as represented by its agents in the Islands?
How could such a Petition be signed by 111 residents of the Islands and be dispatched to New York without some advance information on it having been uncovered by the Commissioner’s staff? Does the situation indicate some inadequacy in our organization in the Islands? If so, what steps are being taken to correct the situation?1

Sincerely yours,

Henry Cabot Lodge, Jr.
  1. In a letter of May 10, 1954 the Director of the Office of Dependent Area Affairs (Gerig) transmitted a copy of this letter to William C. Strand, Director, Office of Territories, Department of the Interior, saying “I presume you and the High Commissioner will wish to consider these questions and I would appreciate your giving us any information on them which we might pass on to Ambassador Lodge.” (ODA files, lot 62 D 225, “Trust Territory of Pacific Islands”)