No. 180  NAI DFA Secretary's Files A43

Personal code telegram from Robert Brennan to Joseph P. Walshe (Dublin)
(No. 71)

WASHINGTON, 6 February 1942

Your telegram 34.1 I handed statement to Under Secretary of State.2 He regretted misunderstanding which had arisen over Expedition. Action was not at all intended as sanction or otherwise of partition. It was merely movement of troops in accordance with needs of war.

I said many people feared this was prelude to attack on Éire.

He appeared shocked, and said with evident sincerity 'You cannot mean there are people who think that we or the British intend to attack. It is entirely preposterous. It is inconceivable. I am utterly appalled to think that anyone in Ireland would believe we would do so or encourage others to do so.' This he repeated earnestly several times. He spoke feelingly of warm friendship hitherto existing, and said America intended to do nothing to disrupt this.

He asked if letter from President reassuring us would relieve situation, and I replied it would have good effect. He said he would speak to President of it today and would see me soon again.

I again dwelt on need for armaments and ships, and he said that he would look into the matter.

1 Not printed.

2 Sumner Welles. See biographical details section.

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