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Egypt, the Egyptians may be forced involuntarily to go along with the other parts of the sterling area and use lend-lease for meeting the bulk of the needs which can be supplied from the United States. In such a situation a system of controls would probably have to be instituted by the Egyptian government which would enable it to meet conditions fixed by the President as necessary to gain his approval for the re-transfer of lend-lease goods to commercial firms for distribution. The determination of criteria underlying these conditions is now being made by the British and ourselves as regards distribution of goods lend-leased to the British and it is certain that identical conditions would govern in the Egyptian case.

So far as the British Supply Council is concerned, their position is set forth in the following excerpt from a letter of August 6, 1941, from Mr. M. W. Wilson, Deputy Director, to Mr. Philip Young, assistant executive officer of the Division of Defense Aid Reports:

"The question is complicated by other considerations which have recently arisen. We have been supplying a part of Egypt's requirements from the United Kingdom, but this is becoming more and more difficult for shipping and other reasons. We are, therefore, being forced to consider whether the supplies hitherto sent from the United Kingdom will not have to be obtained from the United States, insofar as they are available. As Egypt forms part of the Sterling Area, the cost of such supplies obtained in the United States would fall on the common dollar pool of the Sterling Area. We shall have in due course to report this situation to the Joint Clearing Committee which meets under Mr. Morgenthau's 53 chairmanship. If the U. S. Government found it possible to supply any part of these requirements on Lend-Lease terms, it would of course reduce the new dollar charge which is likely to arise. We cannot however bring this matter forward until we have a suitable concrete case to submit to Mr. Morgenthau's Committee, or until we have at least the promised list of essential Egyptian requirements as a basis for preliminary consideration of the question by the Committee.

"There may be obstacles in the way of the provision of Egypt's essential requirements on Lend-Lease terms in the fact that Egypt has at present no import control, while the control over prices, or profits of commercial distributors, may not be sufficient to satisfy the U. S. Government that the conditions (now under discussion) regarding the transfer of Lend-Leased goods to commercial agencies for distribution will be fulfilled. If you saw your way to say something to the Egyptian Commercial Counselor which might convince him of the necessity of an import licensing control and a full control over distribution of any goods which may be made available on Lend-Lease terms, it would be of great assistance."

Your attention is directed particularly to the final sentence in the above excerpt. In view of the Egyptian government's offer to pay cash and, moreover, to our basic desire of keeping trade channels open

"Henry Morgenthau, Jr., Secretary of the Treasury.


and as free as possible, the Department is not accepting Mr. Wilson's suggestion that it take the initiative in attempting to convince the Egyptian Commercial Counselor "of the necessity of an import licensing system and a full control over distribution of any goods which may be made available on Lend-Lease terms."

If, in the circumstances already mentioned with reference to conservation of dollars in the sterling area, Egypt's purchases were in the future to be confined mainly to lend-lease goods, then some arrangements of the sort mentioned with reference to import control would presumably be necessary, for the reasons stated. Even should that situation develop, however, it is felt that it would be unwise for this Department to take any initiative toward persuading the Egyptians to set up such a system; rather, that the initiative in regard to this matter should rest with the British and the Egyptians themselves. The substance of this despatch is not being communicated to the Egyptian Minister.

Very truly yours,

883.24/19: Telegram

For the Secretary of State:

The Minister in Egypt (Kirk) to the Secretary of State

CAIRO, October 15, 1941-3 p. m. [Received October 16-10:13 p. m.]

1591. Personal for Feis. Is the possibility being explored of extending to Egypt the provisions of the Lend-Lease Act? After all this country is a war theater and I can see large benefits from the political, economic and financial standpoints of developing AmericanEgyptian relations on those bases not only for the purpose of the actual war effort but also as a possible impetus to a larger postwar trade in this entire area. I have not discussed this matter here but it is also possible that direct dealings between the United States and Egypt in the supply of defense materials might be acceptable to the British as well as to the Egyptians.


841.24/837: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Egypt (Kirk)

WASHINGTON, October 25, 1941-10 p. m. 603. Your 737 of June 16, 1164 of August 16, and 1487 of September 29.54 Hopkins advises as follows:

"The War Department is sending two military missions to the Middle East as of November 1, 1941, one to be headed by General

54 Telegram No. 1487 not printed.

R. L. Maxwell and to be stationed in Egypt, and the other to be headed by General R. A. Wheeler and to be stationed in Iran.55 They will be supported by three railroad experts, as follows: John A. Gillies, Ralph E. Knapp, J. P. Johnson. They will be available for railroad work both in Egypt and the regions farther east. They should arrive in the Middle East in early November. It is not believed that any commitments as to the utilization of the Union of South Africa to assist in railway transportation should be made until after these officers have had an opportunity to review the situation."

In regard to the possibility of securing rolling stock from South Africa, there seems only a limited possibility in view of the fact that deliveries of mineral products to the ports in South Africa are being retarded now by conditions on their railways, and we are trying to find out now whether we can move the South African and the Rhodesian Governments to deal with this situation, possibly with some assistance on our part in the light of our desire for the products in question.

Please inform Teheran of the quoted portion.


883.24/21: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Egypt (Kirk)

WASHINGTON, October 25, 1941—11 p. m. 604. Your 1591 of October 15, 3 p. m. Hopkins has advised as follows:

"With reference to giving aid to Egypt under Lend-Lease, it is not believed that any commitment should be undertaken at this time. The situation is complex and the attitude of the British will have to be ascertained. Furthermore, all available shipping and supplies are badly needed by the British, the Russians and the Chinese."


867.24/204: Telegram

The Minister in Egypt (Kirk) to the Secretary of State

CAIRO, December 4, 1941-9 a. m. [Received December 5-4:45 p. m.]

1896. Personal for Hopkins. With reference to Department's 604, October 25, 11 a. m. [p. m.], containing your message about lend-lease for Egypt, I am wondering if the reported extension of lend-lease to Turkey 56 indicates an intention to adopt similar measures as regards Egypt. If so is there any data that I can furnish you from this end? KIRK


55 With regard to the military mission to Iran, see bracketed note, p. 477. For correspondence on this subject, see pp. 814 ff.

841.24/1089a: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Egypt (Kirk)

WASHINGTON, December 10, 1941-5 p. m. 757. Mr. Hopkins has asked the Department to forward to you as further reply to your 1896, December 4, the following text of a letter from the President to Stettinius, Lend-Lease Administrator:

"For purposes of implementing the authority conferred upon you as Lend-Lease Administrator by Executive Order No. 8926, dated October 28, 1941 and in order to enable you to arrange for Lend-Lease aid to all nations already receiving aid in such manner as I shall have directed, whether directly or by way of retransfer, I hereby find that the defense of the following countries is vital to the defense of the United States:

1. India, Burma, the Dominions of Australia, Canada, New Zealand and South Africa, (including mandated territories under Dominion mandate), Newfoundland, Southern Rhodesia and the British colonial dependencies (including mandated territories under British mandate).

2. The Kingdom of Yugoslavia.
3. The Kingdom of Egypt."


841.24/1099: Telegram

The Minister in Egypt (Kirk) to the Secretary of State

CAIRO, December 17, 1941-9 a. m. [Received December 18-3: 13 a. m.]

1972. Your 757, December 10, 5 p. m. Am I authorized to inform the Egyptian authorities that lend-lease has been extended to Egypt and if so, is there any pertinent information which I should convey at that time?


883.24/25: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Minister in Egypt (Kirk)

WASHINGTON, December 24, 1941-8 p. m. 809. Your 1972, December 17 and 1997, December 22.57 The LendLease Administrator makes the following reply to your inquiry:

"As you know, the President has found that the defense of Egypt is vital to the defense of the United States. Egypt is therefore eligible to make application for any type of lend-lease aid, which may be rendered either directly to that Government or by way of retransfer from the United Kingdom.

57 Latter not printed.

The latter method was followed with respect to 300,000 bags of flour which the President on October 1, 1941 authorized to be distributed in whole or in part by the British in Egypt to the Egyptian civilian population. This has been the only aid extended to the Egyptian people as such up to this time.

In addition, however, very large quantities of defense articles such as planes, guns, tanks and ammunition have been supplied to the British forces in Egypt, which have undoubtedly contributed greatly to the defense of that country."



883.00/1167: Telegram

The Chargé in Egypt (Hare) to the Secretary of State

CAIRO, March 18, 1941-5 p. m. [Received March 20-7 a. m.]

125. The Prime Minister,58 acting in the capacity of Minister for Foreign Affairs, asked me to call at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs this morning and registered a protest regarding an article entitled, "Britain in the Near East", which appeared in the January 1941 issue of Foreign Affairs and in which certain references are made to King Farouk and Egypt regarded by the Egyptian Government as derogatory. He cited a number of passages, particularly the second paragraph of page 377 in which reference is made to the King as a Quisling, and requested that I transmit a protest to the American Government.

I replied that I deeply regretted that references regarded by the Egyptian Government as offensive to Egypt and the King should have appeared in an American publication and said that I would transmit the protest of the Prime Minister to the Department in accordance with his request. However, I pointed out that although the American Government deplored any action by private American citizens or organizations which might give offense to the people of other friendly countries there are no laws or regulations in the United States providing for Government control of the press, the freedom of which is guaranteed by the Constitution. I added that given the long and well-established ties of friendship and respect existing between the United States and Egypt it was obvious that any such occurrence as this could only be regarded as an isolated incident.

The Prime Minister said that he realized that American law was such but that he felt convinced that some means could be found for

53 Sirry Pasha.

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