Page images
PDF
EPUB

people of the United States of America will share joy in the restoration of freedom to Ethiopia. The greed of stupid brutality which has destroyed the liberties of Europe and now seeks to spread its cancerous growth through all lands, has met here in Ethiopia its first decisive defeat, when neither I nor my people have ever accepted the immoral conquest nor ceased to appeal to the judgment of God and the conscience of the world by offering of lives for our freedom. It was fitting that the first victim of the Axis greed should be the first to be delivered, that the cynical disregard of the verdict of fifteen Assembly Nations should first be punished. The unrebuked aggression of 1935 proved the forerunner of all later aggressions and the herald of world war, and since this first offence began the train of disaster. May its atonement prove the beginning of deliverance for all who love righteousness and the first among these stands England who, fighting alone, valiantly defends the liberties of all of us. In the midst of cruel attacks this brave nation found means to come to the aid of the Ethiopian forces still fighting alone in mountain strongholds, and in happy unity of effort drove the enemy from our borders. It was a source of joy to me that I was able before the final assault to take the field at the head of my own forces and reconquer all my territory lying west of the Nile. Elsewhere other patriots helped forward the brilliant advance of British Forces which in Eritrea destroyed the enemy's sure stronghold, while from the South they drove him with a speed unequalled in the history of war from his defended frontier through his capital and beyond. It remains now for us to labour first to recompense our great ally by releasing his forces and helping his defences, and secondly to build here a State founded on the fear of God, liberty of conscience and Democratic institutions not by might or by power, but by spirit said the Lord.

865D.01/599 The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary

of State

No. 498

LONDON, May 16, 1941.

[Received June 9.] SIR: In continuation of my despatches No. 6641 of January 25 and No. 6719 of February 10, 1941,4 I have the honor to report that, despite the return of the Emperor to Addis Ababa, the British Government still considers his restoration to the throne as in the nature of an experiment. In this connection there are quoted below two questions addressed to the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs in the House of Commons on May 14, 1941 together with Mr. Eden's replies:

* Neither printed.

“Mr. Mander asked the Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs whether, in view of the official entry of the Emperor Haile Selassie to his capital, it is now proposed to extend to him full recognition with appropriate diplomatic status and representation ?

“The Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs (Mr. Eden): While all aspects of our relations with Ethiopia are being carefully considered, military operations in that country are still in progress, and I have therefore nothing at present to add to the statement of policy which I made on 4th February. Hon. Members will

have read with gratification the exchange of messages between the Prime Minister and the Emperor of Ethiopia on the occasion of the entry of the Emperor into Addis Ababa.

"Mr. Mander: In view of the messages addressed to His Majesty Haile Selassie, surely it is not possible any longer to speak of him as merely having a claim to the throne. He is well seated upon it.

“Mr. Eden: I think I made the position clear last February, when I pointed out that while military operations are going on in Abyssinia parts of the country will require temporary measures of military guidance and control, and I must adhere to that.'

In a recent conversation at the Foreign Office the official concerned re-emphasized that the British Government had no territorial ambitions with respect to Ethiopia but that it did have a strong interest in the maintenance of order throughout East Africa. It is intended that the Emperor's authority must be used for this purpose in such areas of Ethiopia as may prove obedient to it and that the remainder of the country will be kept under military occupation for such time as may be necessary. In view of the continuing military operations the areas which will require occupation have not yet been determined.

A political office for occupied enemy territory has been set up in Cairo under General Wavell with Sir Philip Mitchell as Chief Political Officer and Mr. M. S. Lush as Deputy Chief Political Officer. It is understood that Sir Philip is at present in Cairo but that Mr. Lush is in Addis Ababa as the Emperor's principal “adviser".

The text of the telegrams exchanged between the Emperor and the British Prime Minister on the occasion of the former's return to

6 The statement was as follows: "His Majesty's Government would welcome the reappearance of an independent Ethiopian State and recognise the claim of the Emperor Haile Selassie to the throne. The Emperor has intimated to His Majesty's Government that he will need outside assistance and guidance. His Majesty's Government agree with this view and consider that any such assistance and guidance in economic and political matters should be the subject of international arrangement at the conclusion of peace. They reaffirm that they have themselves no territorial ambitions in Abyssinia. In the meanwhile the conduct of military operations by Imperial forces in parts of Abyssinia will require temporary measures of military guidance and control. These will be carried out in consultation with the Emperor, and will be brought to an end as soon as the situation permits.” Parliamentary Debates, House of Commons, 5th series, vol. 368, col. 804.

Addis Ababa, as printed in the Manchester Guardian, is enclosed. Respectfully yours,

For the Ambassador: HERSCHEL V. JOHNSON

884.001 Selassie 1/372 The Minister-Counselor of Embassy in the United Kingdom

(Johnson) to the Chief of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs (Murray)

LONDON, May 16, 1941. DEAR WALLACE: I note from your letter of March 25th' that Mr. Eden's statement in the House of Commons on February 4th seemed to you to present a marked contrast to the previous policy of the British Government as reported in our despatch No. 6641 of January 25th.? I think the only contrast is that between a public statement in Parliament and a confidential statement by a responsible Foreign Office official. That official stated, as reported in my despatch under reference, that the Emperor's mission was considered an experiment but one which exceeded expectations. As reported in my despatch No. 498 of today's date, the Foreign Office still considers the Emperor's l'estoration in the nature of an experiment. It desires to use the Emperor as an instrument of authority in a part of Ethiopia and has accordingly given his government a measure of recognition but is making clear to the Emperor that he must act only by and with British consent. The British Government is far from being prepared to admit the Emperor's government to the status of an ally or to state when it might again recognize Ethiopia as a fully independent state.

In view of the popular interest in the Emperor on the part of a "vocal minority” in England, public statements on this question are naturally somewhat guarded. Sincerely yours,

HERSCHEL JOHNSON

740.0011 European War 1939/11104 : Telegram

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

CAIRO, May 18, 1941–1 p. m.

[Received May 20—3:44 a. m.] 522. It is reported but not yet officially announced that the Duke of Aosta has surrendered with 7,000 men.

KIRK

Not reprinted.
Not printed.

884.001 Selassie I/370 : Telegram

President Roosevelt to the Emperor of Ethiopia (Haile Selassie I)

WASHINGTON, May 20, 1941. I have received Your Majesty's message informing me of your return to Addis Ababa, and I assure you of the satisfaction with which I have received these tidings. On behalf of the people and Government of the United States I have great pleasure in extending to Your Majesty my most sincere felicitations on this notable occasion and my best wishes for Your Majesty's health and happiness.

FRANKLIN D. ROOSEVELT

3650.1115/13: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Consul at Aden (Timberlake)

WASHINGTON, May 24, 1941–11 p. m. 14. That portion of your telegram May 8 via Nairobi as concerns medical aid to Ethiopia was communicated to American Red Cross which states that while it has at various times given much thought to possibility of supplying some medical aid to Ethiopia and might eventually be able to render a measure of assistance it would not seem feasible for the American Red Cross at this time to undertake an operation along such pretentious lines as requested by the British authorities there. A similar reply has been made through Legation Cairo to memorandum received from British Ambassador.

HULL

3650.1115/13: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Consul at Aden (Timberlake)

WASHINGTON, May 24, 1941—midnight. 15. Your telegram May 8. It is extremely unlikely that American vessels can be made available for the movement of Italian civilians from Berbera to South Africa. The only American vessels operating in the area referred to are cargo vessels which, of course, could not handle any great number of passengers. Also, the vessels which might come into position for this purpose are urgently needed for the transportation to the United States of materials required for the national defense.

HULL IRAN

REPRESENTATIONS BY THE UNITED STATES REGARDING NON-PAYMENT OF OLD ACCOUNTS OWED TO AMERICAN EXPORTERS; FINAL SETTLEMENT IN PRINCIPLE BY THE IRANIAN EXCHANGE COMMISSION

891.5151/204

The Minister in Iran (Dreyfus) to the Secretary of State

No. 21

TEHRAN, January 23, 1941.

[Received March 29.] SIR: I have the honor to acknowledge receipt of the Department's instruction No. 527 of October 1, 1940,stating that the Department is not, as a rule, instrumental in attaching, for the supposed benefit of American firms, funds located in the United States belonging to a foreign government; and instructing that this Legation continue its efforts to have dollar payments effected.

In a Note Verbale dated December 12, 1940, of which a copy is enclosed, the Legation informed the Iranian Ministry of Foreign Affairs that the Legation knew of no instance where dollar payments had been made to American creditors through the procedure outlined in the Ministry's Note of September 4, 1939, and requested that the Ministry ascertain whether or not the approved procedure will, in fact, enable American creditors to recover the sums due on old accounts.

On January 11, 1941, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs replied that all possible assistance had been given to American creditors, and that in the future, no doubt, the official Exchange Commission would lend its assistance in any possible way. A translation of the note in question is enclosed.

The present procedure for repayment has been in effect for about sixteen months—a period which would appear to be ample for a trial of its efficacy. Although it is not possible to say that no account has been paid through this procedure, the Legation knows of none; while it knows of many accounts which were owed to American exporters before the enactment of the Foreign Exchange Control Law of March 1, 1936, and which are still unpaid.

[blocks in formation]
« PreviousContinue »