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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

Palestine,   pp. 881-922 PDF (15.0 MB)

Page 893

me that in all Cabinet discussions in connection with the Government's
policy on the question of Palestine the attitude of the American
Government and that great body of public opinion which is concerned
therein was very much in their minds. He also asked me to realize the
difficulties of the situation and that every endeavor was being made by
the British Government to find an equitable solution among the many
factors that must necessarily enter into consideration.
890F.6363 Standard Oil Co./98
Memorandurm by the Chief of the Division of Near Eastern Affairs
                                     [WASHINGTON,] July 12, 1937.
  Mr. J. A. Moffett, Chairman of the Board of the Bahrein Petroleum
Company, Ltd., New York, a subsidiary of the Standard Oil Com-
pany of California, called by appointment this morning upon the
Under Secretary in connection with his company's interests in Saudi
Arabia and the Persian Gulf region. Present also were the Chief of
the Near Eastern Division and the Economic Adviser.18
  After describing briefly his company's operations in the above-
mentioned area, Mr. Moffett stated that while King Ibn Saud had
hitherto been regarded as very friendly to American interests, this
company's representatives thought they had discerned a certain
disposition on the part of the King to be less amenable and co-opera-
tive in meeting the company's wishes with regard to operations in
Saudi Arabia and more particularly with regard to the expansion of
operations in that area. It was felt that while Ibn Saud had in the
past been fairly independent in his relations with the British he
was showing signs at present of greater friendliness to the British
and a disposition to cooperate with them more fully.
  Mr. Moffett then stated that the competent officials of his company
were fearful that any disposition on the part of this Government to
support Jewish claims in the present dispute over the new pronounce-
ment of British policy proposing a partition of Palestine between the
Arabs and the Jews might have serious repercussions on American
oil interests in Saudi Arabia and might even result in their expulsion.
Mr. Moffett emphasized in this connection the truly American charac-
ter of the oil concessions held by his company in Saudi Arabia and
the importance of increasing production wherever possible in order
to meet the constantly increasing demands.
1 Herbert Fels.

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