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Capital Comment

May 5, 1935
See Original Daily Bulletin From This Date


Unofficial reports that Germany is trying to negotiate a new trade treaty with the United States to replace the existing pact which the Hitler government will abrogate as of October 14, are current here. In sounding out the possibilities of developing a new treaty, Germany is trying to steer clear of the “most-favored-nation” provisions which are contained in the existing document. It was last Fall when Germany announced to the United States her intention of abandoning the treaty now in force.

Although the new treaty which Germany is trying to negotiate has no connection with the reciprocal trade agreements which are being negotiated with other countries, indications are that the United States will not depart from the principles which govern reciprocal trade pacts. The treaty with Germany, which will expire next October, was proclaimed on October 14, 1925. During the last two years, Germany has violated the pact on a number of occasions. These violations caused Secretary of State Hull to charge Germany with discrimination against American interests. Under the treaty Germany and the United States agreed to give each other’s goods as favorable treatment as they accorded goods of any other nation.

The Hitler government’s critical economic situation forced Germany to enter into deals with other countries and made it impossible for the Reich to extend similar favors to goods from the United States. This was pointed out by Ambassador Luther at the time he notified the State Department, on behalf of his government, that Germany would abandon the treaty. Germany’s inability to obtain exchange with which to buy American goods, particularly cotton, still remains a grave problem to the Reich.

Although trade between the United States and Germany has dropped off considerably in the last two years, it is feared in trade circles that should the existing treaty expire on October 14 without a new one to replace it, what little trade remaining between the two countries would be jeopardized. Thus, Germany is anxious to enter into a new treaty which the Reich hopes will clear up some of the difficulties it has experienced under the existing pact. Such a treaty requires Senate ratification.

Washingfiton is showing considerable interest in the fact that during the last couple of months, Germany has increased its imports of cotton from the United States. Last Winter the Hitler government boasted of being able to manufacture cotton substitutes from wood and other products. Apparently, Germany is finding that after all, nothing can take the place of cotton for any length of time.

This Spring saw Germany increase her textile purchases from France as well as increase her purchases of raw cotton from the United States. The rise in textile buying from France, alarmed the French government to such an extent that the government placed restrictions on textile exports to Germany.

House members are renewing their efforts to obtain action from the State Department against the persecution of Catholics in Mexico. Representative Clare G. Fenerty of Pennsylvania points out that Catholics are not the only ones suffering from the wave of tolerance which has swept Mexico. “It is apparent, too, that anti-Semitism is raising its ugly head with the benediction and approval of those high in the councils of the Mexican government,” he said. “But remembering the perennial perseverance of the Children of Israel, the Jews will be there after there are no more Calles officials left to persecute them.”

Thousands of protests from Catholics, Protestants and Jews of the United States have come to Washington in behalf of the oppressed in Mexico. A number of resolutions have been introduced in both the House and the Senate asking that the State Department protest religious persecution in Mexico. So far, nothing has been accomplished because the State Department does not consider this a wise move.

In the meantime, a number of members of Congress have signed a petition asking the Communications Commission to investigate radio propaganda sponsored by the Mexican government over the facility of American broadcasting companies. Among those who signed this petition were Representatives William M. Citron and Herman P. Kopplemann, both of Connecticut.

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