File No. 656.119/65

The Minister in the Netherlands ( Garrett ) to the Secretary of State


1457. In a conversation with the Minister for Foreign Affairs to-day I found him rather stirred up at what seemed to him the unfriendly attitude of the Exports Administrative Board. He said that the board had proposed a plan which the Dutch Government with reluctance had agreed to about a fortnight ago and he could not understand why there should be delay in putting it into effect unless indeed the board had thought of a new proposition after their own proposal had been agreed to. He said that two things were particularly worrying him at the moment: (1) your decision which had been telegraphed him by Rappard to refuse bunker coal to Dutch vessels to Netherland Indies unless they agree to discharge their return cargoes in the United States,1 and (2) the newspaper reports that Dutch vessels in the United States are to be requisitioned. Loudon admitted that with the 40 per cent reduction in breadstuffs consumption now in force Dutch internal supplies would not be exhausted before March. If the statements regarding requisitionings are untrue could you not so inform me.

Growing agitation here might be counteracted by a quick decision of the Exports Administrative Board. Is the inability to decide upon a basic policy due to failure to secure information requested from Holland? Loudon states emphatically that everything requested has been given. From British and other good sources it appears that the Dutch have faithfully lived up to their agreements and that nothing is now going to Germany that they have agreed should not go. Unless demanded by greater exigencies it would appear unwise to drive them into changing this attitude.

  1. See the public statement by the Exports Administrative Board, Oct. 5, ante, p. 958.