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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

Morocco,   pp. 858-880 PDF (8.5 MB)

Page 859

781.003/16: Telegram
  The Secretary of State to the Amba8sador in France (Bullitt)
                              WASHINGTON, April 13, 1937-2 p. m.
  170. London has been requested to repeat to you by mail its 200,
April 7, 6 p. m., which reports an agreement by the British to relin-
quish capitulations in Morocco. We have, of course, expected this.
With the consummation of such an agreement we anticipate that the
French will soon approach us, probably through you.
  Our essential interest in Morocco is one of trade. We want main-
tained the existing principles governing Moroccan trade, namely
4"economic liberty without inequality". This means equality with
all, including France. Anything less than equality with France
means the dissipation of a large percentage of our existing exports to
Morocco. France apparently feels that she and her trade should be
in a preferred position. The Act of Algeciras 2 and other Moroccan
treaties have made it impossible for France to obtain this preferred
position juridically. Nevertheless through decrees and administra.
tive tactics the Protectorate authorities have sought to obtain this
position for French commerce. Decrees and regulations may because
of our capitulatory position be applied to American nationals and
ressortissants only in the event this Government gives its assent.
Capitulations in Morocco have therefore become of prime importance
in the protection of our trade. This represents our essential- interest
in the maintenance of capitulations. Any relinquishment of our
present capitulatory rights would have to be accompanied by real
guarantees for our commerce.
  Once the British renounce their capitulations we apprehend that
the French will bring insistent pressure to bear on us, the only re-
maining capitulatory power, to renounce our rights also. If the
French approach us we will be obliged to negotiate. We of course
do not wish to make the first move. However, the foregoing may
be helpful to you in watching developments and particularly in case
the French approach you in the matter.
  We would welcome any information or ideas you may have along
these lines.
781.003/17: Telegram
  The Ambassador in France (Bullitt) to the Secretary of State
                                     PARIS, April 16,1937-1 p. m.
                                 [Received April 16-12: 50 p. m.]
  488. Department's 170, April 13, 2 p. m. You will recall from my
28, January 8, 7 p. M.,3 that Vienot, Undersecretary of State for
2 Signed April 7, 1906, Foreign Relation8, 1906, pt. 2, p. 1495.
' Not printed.

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