No. 229 NAI DFA ES Box 34 File 239

Memorandum by Charles Bewley on his relations with Robert Briscoe1


Berlin, 28 January 1922

For several weeks before the episode referred to by Mr. Briscoe in his report, I had received reports that Mr. Briscoe was stating in public that he was accredited as consul for Ireland. I have also been informed by a firm of Hamburg shipowners that Mr. Briscoe states that a steamship line in which he personally has a financial interest has the support of the Irish government.

On the evening referred to by Mr. Briscoe I went to a cafe in which I had on several previous occasions met Mr. Briscoe. He was not there himself. One of the staff asked me whether he was Irish Consul, I said he was not. I was told that he stated that he was Irish Consul. I said that he was not, and added that it was not likely that a Jew of his type would be appointed. (The conversation was in German). I regret having made the latter remark and have already expressed my regret to Mr. Briscoe. At the moment, a German Jew who was sitting near said I had insulted his race, and after a short further conversation I left the cafe.

Altogether four or five persons were present, and I do not think all of them were in a position to hear. However, I frankly acknowledge that the remark was not a proper one to make, and I have expressed my regret to the proprietor of the cafe, who was present, if I hurt the feelings of any customer.

I do not of course know the details of Mr. Briscoe's report, so am not in a position to reply to them seriatim.

I have furnished a long report on Mr. Briscoe's other activities to the proper quarter. I would suggest with all respect that it should also be taken into account before taking any action in the present circumstances.

1 This memorandum was handed to John Chartres in the Grand Hotel in Paris.

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