351. Telegram From the Secretary of State to the Embassy in Brazil1

512. You authorized (Embtel 612)2 acknowledge receipt Brazilian note December 17 as follows:

“The Government of the United States of America, conscious of the obligations which devolve upon it and which extend equally to the Government of the United States of Brazil, with reference to the common defense of the two countries and the defense of the continent, by reason of diplomatic undertakings previously concluded, especially the Inter-American Treaty of Reciprocal Assistance [Page 733] signed in Rio de Janeiro on September 2, 1947, as reaffirmed by the Military Assistance Agreement concluded in this capital by the two governments on March 15, 1952, is prepared to conclude the following agreement, which follows in particular the principles stated in Article I, Paragraph 1 of the Military Assistance Agreement mentioned: (Note: Minor changes in Preamble are necessary since the Brazilian preamble is so worded as to mean that in the MDAP, which is an executive agreement, the U.S. assumed obligations which would only be assumed through a treaty.)

  • “(1) The Governments of Brazil and the United States of America, with a view to the defense of Brazilian territory and of the American continent, have agreed to the construction on the Island of Fernando de Noronha of installations particularly of an electronic character connected with the development of guided missiles;
  • “(2) The Government of Brazil authorizes these installations to be constructed by United States personnel assisted by Brazilian personnel;
  • “(3) It is agreed that said installations shall be under the command of a Brazilian officer and the Brazilian national flag exclusively will continue to fly over the Island of Fernando de Noronha;
  • “(4) It is understood that the operation of the technical facilities at the said installations shall be in charge of the United States personnel who will be assisted by Brazilian technicians and military;
  • “(5) The Government of the United States of America agrees that United States personnel shall be gradually replaced by Brazilian personnel in accordance with conditions to be determined by common agreement;
  • “(6) The Goverment of the United States of America, in view of the Brazilian Government’s preoccupation that greater defense responsibilities, and therefore a need for additional technical assistance and material resources, may result from the establishment of the Missile Tracking Station on Brazilian territory, agrees to discuss with the Government of Brazil the extent of such added requirements as may be involved during the life of this agreement. (Note: We regard interpretation of Article 6 along above lines as essential to avoid future misunderstandings and the granting to Brazil of a virtual blank check against the U.S. for military equipment.)
  • “(7) The Government of the United States of America agrees that the construction and fixed improvements made on the Island of Fernando de Noronha in connection with the technical installations to which this agreement refers shall become the property of Brazil without any indemnification, upon termination of this agreement or upon termination of any extension.
  • “(8) If this is satisfactory to the Brazilian Government, it is understood that Your Excellency’s note of December 17, and this note in reply thereto, shall constitute an agreement between our two Governments which shall remain in force for a period of five years from this date and may be extended only under the conditions and for the length of time to be determined by common agreement. In the event of an extension, the agreement may be denounced by either of the two Governments with prior notice of one year.”

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Department understands these changes not in accordance your recommendation but believes after consultation with Department of Defense that there is no alternative.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 732.5–MSP/12–1756. Confidential. Drafted by Siracusa, Bernbaum, and Sayre; cleared in draft with Phleger and Louis E. Frechtling of the Office of the Special Assistant to the Under Secretary for Mutual Security Affairs, in substance with Gray, and in final form by Murphy and Rubottom. Approved by Hoover.
  2. See footnote 2, Document 349.