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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

France,   pp. 275-318 PDF (16.0 MB)

Page 304

system was of doubtful legality. It would therefore be more em-
barrassing for them to delay the suppression of the bonding system.
I asked why it would be embarrassing and they repeated that the
colonists of St. Pierre-Miquelon had demanded to be treated on the
same footing as all other French colonists.
  I said that I did not believe that the French Government had to be
too particular about the finer feelings of a lot of smugglers.
  I said further that we did not believe the system they proposed to
install would prevent the importation into St. Pierre-Miquelon of
alcohol from other countries than France under false French labels
and under false French certificates. I added that we did not believe
that exports from France would be controlled properly and stated
that we believed the only purpose of the new decree was to permit
smuggling. After a vigorous discussion I was again assured that the
only desire of the French Government was to put an end once and for
all to smuggling from St. Pierre-Miquelon.
811.114 St. Pierre-Miquelon/464: Telegram
  The Ammbassador in France (Bullitt) to the Secretary of State
                               PARIS, February 17, 1937-midnight.
                             [Received February 18-10: 15 a. m.]
  235. Supplementing my 234, February 17, 11 p. m. I finally elicited
the information requested from the Minister of Colonies that Delbos
after my conversation with him last night had flatly forbidden the
issuance of the new decree until our Government should be satisfied.
  I attribute to this intervention by Delbos the concessions offered
this evening by the Minister of Colonies:
  (1) that no alcool de traite would be exported to Saint Pierre-
  (2) that a quota for alcoholic beverages would be established if
  (3) that if the new regime should not prove to be satisfactory the
present regime would be reintroduced.
      I doubt that our Consul at St. Pierre-Miquelon ever favored the
plan of control now proposed. It would be most valuable to me to
have any expressions of opinion which Gunsaulus may have sent to
the Department with regard to this proposal.
  I venture to renew my recommendation that both you and the Pres-
ident should speak about this matter emphatically to Bonnet. I can
see no reason why it is not possible both to forbid the importation of
alcohol into St. Pierre-Miquelon from all countries other than France
and to continue at the same time the system of exportation in bond.

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