324 Dixon to Hodgson

Cablegram 1252 WASHINGTON, 31 October 1943, 5.35 p.m.


Your 1314. [1] Everything possible has been done to press forward the Trade Agreement negotiations in accordance with the decision conveyed by your 1190 of 30th September [2], but Hull's personal decision on the question [of] what United States should do in the light of United Kingdom's attitude is indispensable to the officers of the State Department before they will commit themselves irrevocably on the matter, and his preoccupation with Russian negotiations and his journey to Russia have made it impossible for either them or us to secure his personal attention.

Stettinius, with whom I have been in communication and who is to consult Hawkins again before I next see him on Tuesday, will not act independently of Hull and though we had already, and have again, suggested telegraphic communication to Hull, they have not been prepared to do this both because of the importance of Hull's work in Russia and because their judgment is that it could at best produce only a reply deferring the matter until his return and might produce a flat negative on the question whether America should continue its negotiations with Australia alone.

It is not our attitude that is linked up with further agreement or negotiations between United States of America and United Kingdom.

On the contrary it is one that we have been careful repeatedly to contest but which nevertheless Hawkins has been and still is inclined to adopt on the American side. In short it is America that links negotiations between United States of America and Australia with negotiations between United States of America and United Kingdom. The reason, as explained in our 1012 of 9th September [3], is that, in order to face the farm bloc with a reduction in the duty on Australian wool and meat and on New Zealand and Australian lamb and butter, Hull and Hawkins have all along taken the position that they politically need to be in a situation to provide for the farm bloc correlative benefits by the reduction of duties on the importation into United Kingdom of other American primary products such as raisins, rice and various fruits.

1 Document 317.

2 Document 289.

3 On file AA:A989, 43/735/55/1/ i.

[AA:A989, 43/735/70/2]