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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers, 1937. The British Commonwealth, Europe, Near East and Africa

Iran,   pp. 718-766 PDF (18.1 MB)

Page 723

sions, when in full legal force, would be best protected by the ap-
pointment of a Minister. All other American interests would also,
of course, be benefited.
  The suggestion that this appointment be made promptly, without
awaiting the ratification of the concessions, arose from the considera-
tion that this might be delayed until clippings from the American
press should begin to arrive in Iran, and not with any view to en-
couraging ratification, which has been a foregone conclusion, every-
thing being equal.
  The Legation does not apprehend bad results from straight news
articles relating to Iran in the leading daily newspapers so much
as the poor taste and inaccuracies which so frequently get into the
background and color with which these items are decorated in the
weekly news magazines and Sunday supplements.
  The Legation feels that the Department has accurately stated the
problem in our relations with Iran as that of the sensitivity of the
Shah to anything which by any scope of the imagination could be
regarded as derogatory to himself. Indeed, to the best of its knowl-
edge, there is no representative at Teheran of any country where
the press can be regarded as free who has not been faced with the
same difficulty to some degree. The problem, so far as one can see,
is insoluble during the Shah's life. It cannot be met directly, but
only indirectly, by such means as suggest themselves as appropriate
from time to time. It seemed to the Legation that the appointment of
a Minister would harmonize with this line of action.
  Respectfully yours,                        GORDON P. MERRIAM
Memorandum by the Chief of the DiiWsion of Near Eastern Affairs
               (Murray) to the Secretary of State
                                   [WASHINGTON,] March 26, 1937.
  MR. SECRETARY: As the result of a lengthy conversation which I
had yesterday with Major Ibrahim Arfa, an Iranian army officer
now officially in this country, I have reason to believe that a means
may soon be found to induce the Shah of Iran to restore Iranian
diplomatic and consular representation in this country at a not too
distant date.
  Major Arfa, who is a person of keen intelligence and perception
and who has, only recently, been fully restored to the Shah's favor,
had the following to say with regard to the possibilities of modifying
the Shah's hitherto relentless opposition to maintaining any sort
of representation in the United States so long as this Government

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