No. 365 NAI DFA Secretary's Files P53

Code telegram from Robert Brennan to Joseph P. Walshe (Dublin)
(No. 305) (Personal) (Copy)

Washington, 10 December 1940

Your telegram 193.1 I saw Under Secretary of State. He said Minister had got things mixed. He had not said to me many of the things stated. What happened was that, subsequent to my interview, he had seen President, who decided to let you know what was opinion here and instructed Minister accordingly something as follows:-

They were anxious to do everything possible to prevent British defeat, and one factor was they should have use of ports. They had in mind that, if Germany won, there would be end of freedom and democracy in Ireland.

He was sorry for misunderstanding. He said Minister had no right to say that America would enter war. He added their naval experts considered greatest danger to Britain's prospects at present was destruction of shipping and that everything should be done to equip them to meet menace. He said President had said he would like to see me on whole question when he returns.

I pointed out cession or leasing would invite destruction, that that was a certainty, whereas alternative was only a possibility and that we would stick to decision to defend against all.

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