Peace and War: United States Foreign Policy, 1931-1941

By United States Department of State | Go to book overview

IV
WARNINGS OF DANGER 1933-1935

Secretary Hull's Conversation With the German Ambassador

ON NOVEMBER 2, 1933, in a conversation between Secretary of State Hull and German Ambassador Luther on the related questions of disarmament and world peace, the Secretary said that "the outlook in Europe at this distance for disarmament or for peace" did not appear very encouraging; that "a general war during the next two to ten years seemed more probable than peace"; that this country "had exerted itself in every way possible in support of the latter [peace] and against the possible recurrence of the former [war]", but that frankly he felt discouraged.

The German Ambassador quoted Hitler's statement to the effect that Germany would not seek the restoration of Alsace-Lorraine, and that in his opinion this should quiet French apprehension. He added that the Saar question was an entirely separate one. (20)


Consul General Messersmith's Report From Berlin

The United States Consul General at Berlin, George S. Messersmith, who had been at that post since 1930, reported frequently to the Department of State during this period on the menace inherent in the Nazi regime. Mr. Messersmith expressed the view, in a letter of June 26, 1933 to Under Secretary of State Phillips, that the United States must be exceedingly careful in its dealings with Germany as long as the existing Government was in power, as that Government had no spokesmen who could really be depended upon and those who held the highest positions were "capable of actions which really outlaw them from ordinary intercourse". He reported that some of the men who were running the German Government were "psychopathic cases"; that others were in a state of exaltation and in a frame of mind that knew no reason; and that those men in the party and in responsible positions who were really worthwhile were powerless because they had to follow the orders of superiors who were suffering from the "abnormal psychology" prevailing in Germany. "There is a real revolution here and a dangerous situation", he said.

Consul General Messersmith reported further that a martial spirit was being developed in Germany; that everywhere people were seen

-13-

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Peace and War: United States Foreign Policy, 1931-1941
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Peace and War - United States Foreign Policy 1931-1941 *
  • Foreword iii
  • Contents v
  • Documents i
  • I- The Fateful Decade 1
  • II- Japanese Conquest of Manchuria 1931-1932 4
  • III- Disarmament Discussions 1932-1934 9
  • IV- Warnings of Danger 1933-1935 13
  • V- Italian Conquest of Ethiopia 1935-1936 29
  • VI- Developing Dangers 1936-1937 34
  • VII- Japanese Attack on China 1937 45
  • VIII- European Crisis 1938 54
  • IX- European War 1939 62
  • X- European War 1940 71
  • XI- Defense Measures of the United States 1940 80
  • XII- Relations with Japan 1938-1940 88
  • XIII- European War 1941 99
  • XIV- Discussions with Japan 1941 Pearl Harbor 118
  • XV- United Nations 151
  • Documents 1-271 *
  • Index *
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