384 Mr R. G. Casey, Minister to the United States, to Mr R. G. Menzies, Prime Minister

Cablegram 123 WASHINGTON, 15 June 1940, 12 noon


Your telegram (unnumbered) of 14th June. [1]

President [2] is so engaged with British [3], French [4] and with other Ambassadors and with consideration of amendments to the Johnson Act [5] and Neutrality Act [6] that personal delivery of your message would have meant seriously to delay it. I therefore sent it down by hand last night and this morning called on the Under Secretary of State [7] to assure myself that it had been received. I confirmed that this was the case and that it and several somewhat similar messages were receiving dose attention and that it was hoped that the President would be able to receive me shortly.

I once again received the impression that the President is fully convinced of the tragic seriousness of the position. His problem is to decide the action he can take that will on the one hand fortify the resolution of the Allies and on the other hand have the support of United States public opinion and Congress. He is doing everything conceivable to those ends. [8]


1 Document 380.

2 Franklin D. Roosevelt.

3 Lord Lothian.

4 Comte R. Doynel de Saint-Quentin.

5 The Johnson Act of 1934 prohibited financial transactions with any foreign government which had defaulted on its obligations to the United States.

6 The Neutrality Act of 1937 required the President, on the outbreak of a war, to name the belligerents. Thereafter the supply of arms, ammunition and the implements of war to the parties named in the declaration was illegal.

7 Sumner Welles.

8 This cablegram was repeated as no. 35 to S. M. Bruce, High Commissioner in London.

[FA: A3195, 1.4326]