The Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Uruguay (Dawson)
404. Personal for the Ambassador. We are very deeply interested in the views of the Foreign Minister as summarized in your 648, October 20, 1 p.m.
Two fundamental points of procedure are made by the Foreign Minister with which we are in entire agreement: first, no action taken by the American republics should violate the principle of non-intervention; second, all action taken should be approached on a collective multilateral basis.
We also agree with the two points of substance to which the Foreign Minister referred in connection with any case that may be presented against Argentina: (1) persistent protection of Nazi activities, and (2) notorious and repeated violation of human and civil rights.
We are now preparing a comprehensive statement with regard to evidence of persistent protection of Nazi agents and Nazi activities. This statement, which we feel must be decisive, will be submitted only after we have thoroughly examined intelligence information which is now being received from investigations in Germany.
With regard to the second ground for a case against the Farrell6 government (notorious and repeated violation of elementary human and civil rights) we agree that there are provisions of the Mexico City [Page 187] resolutions as well as of earlier inter-American resolutions, which constitute a legal basis for submitting evidence on this point, and therefore that it constitutes a basis for joint action in the Argentine matter. We also agree that the principle of non-intervention may not be used as a shield behind which a government of force violates those very rights for which we have expended so heavily of our human and material resources. Even though this principle should be self-evident, we should obtain its express acceptance by a substantial majority of the American governments. We are satisfied that the majority of the American republics, their peoples and governments, would accept and support the basic proposition as enunciated by the Minister.
A unique opportunity is now presented to carry forward and implement a principle of public law (derecho de gentes) which would be of enduring significance to the Americas. We would gladly follow the leadership of the Foreign Minister should he urge its acceptance by all of the governments as a basis for joint action in relation to the Farrell Government. We believe that an inter-American declaration at this time which asserted a joint concern with the protection of elementary human and civil rights by governments of this Hemisphere in relation to the Argentine situation would not only have an immediate impact on that situation, but would have significant implications outside the Hemisphere.
We earnestly hope that the Foreign Minister will take this leadership. You should assure him that if he does so this Government will immediately and vigorously support him in all of the American capitals. We are aware that such an initiative might expose Uruguay to sanctions by Argentina and you should reaffirm our previous assurances of unqualified support in all fields of assistance in the event of reprisals.
You will appreciate the far-reaching significance of this approach. Given your high standing with the Uruguayan authorities and your long experience in dealing with them on other similar matters, I am relying on your persuasive powers in this instance.7