819.5034/6–545: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Chargé in Panama ( Donnelly )

270. So long as possibility exists that proposed constitutional discriminations against Americans engaged in commerce might be used for bargaining purposes, it would hardly seem feasible either to discuss the negotiation of a standard treaty of friendship, commerce and navigation or to make an implied commitment to negotiate some other kind of treaty which the Panamanians speak of as a commercial treaty. Reurtel 542, June 5, Dept’s policy is still as set forth in Deptel 146, April 2, especially last two paragraphs and second paragraph urtel under reference. Furthermore, Dept perceives no advantage to be gained by attempting to negotiate a treaty or exchange of notes with an administration leaving office in a few days8 and which may not be able to control actions of Constitutional Assembly. Consequently, unless you perceive some desirable end to be obtained, Dept feels an exchange of notes, whose only real object would be to commit us by implication to negotiate a so-called commercial treaty as mentioned above, would be undesirable and a reversal of the policy discussed in Deptel 146.

You are consequently authorized to inform President de la Guardia that while Dept is always willing to discuss with the Government of Panama any and all questions affecting relations between the two Governments, it cannot see its way clear to undertaking negotiations of any kind so long as the constitutional situation regarding nationalization of commerce is obscure.

  1. Enrique A. Jimenez was inaugurated as President on June 15, 1945, after election by the Constituent Assembly.