Microfilm Reel 380, File 5257, "Albania"

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All the microfilm scans from the file number 2557, "Albania," on reel 380 from the Executive Office files of the Woodrow Wilson Papers, series 4 in the Library of Congress finding aid.

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Henceforth, with a radiant faith in the support of America and of the awakened liberal forces of Europe, the Albanian people resolved unanimously to put up force against force, the powerful force of the weak as against the brutal strength of the wicked, so much so that when the time came to oppose the intolerable pretenses of Italy, the whole nation rallied around its Government and brought to a triumphant conclusion the unequal war against the great Power that was forced, at the end, to give up the Albanian possessions the Peace Conference had awarded to it. What is more, Italy, the very Power that stood in the way of the realization of the unity and independence of Albania, did not only recognise these two attributes of sovereignty, but she also became the guarantor of the same as against other nations. This is what the spirit of America accomplished in Albania whose people are ever so grateful to this great country and to the man that stands at its head.

Yet, the Albanian Commissioner deems it his duty to state frankly that the Albanian people believe that they have experienced a slight disappointment in America's attitude toward their country. They always felt and hoped that the United States, having done so much for Albania, would be the first to extent recognition to its triumphant statehood, and, that, after Italy was forced to do so not in the form of a gracious act of sovereignty but as a condition of peace with Albania, the United States would have been the first again to exercise that benevolent act of sovereignty and goodwill toward the new State.

The Albanian people feel all the more disappointed because they are convinced that they have fulfilled all the requirements for recognition. They have a stable Government, which has been in power for nine months, resting completely on the will of the people as expressed at all times by their representatives assembled in Parliament. Their form of Government is not only representative but also republican. Their Government is exercising the attributes of sovereignty over the territory recognised as appertaining to the Albanian State by the London Conference of 1912-1913, with the exception of some strips that the Serbians have occupied with the doubtful assent of the Allies and whose occupation has, most unfortunately, caused friction between the two Governments.

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The desire for recognition on the part of the United States is all the more emphatic because of the fact that Albania wishes to establish commercial relations with the United States and take advantage of the material wealth of the latter in order to develop her natural resources and put the country on a level with the other civilized nations. There is already an acute demand for capital for the construction of public works, railroads, docks, warfes, shipping etc. etc. The Albanian Commissioner has had several inquiries on that point on the part of American financial institutions that are desirous of undertaking such developments; but they always stumble on the question of recognition.

It is to be observed, likewise, that despite the actual strength of the Albanian Government which enjoys the confidence of the people, non-recognition means putting a premium on anarchy, and the Albanian people firmly believe that the United States is not willing to see their country in such a state.

It is, therefore, the firm hope of the Albanian nation that the United States Government will not delay any longer the taking of the steps that lead to recogntion, crowning thus the highly beneficent work that it has already done in the direction of redeeming Albania's destiny.

C. A. Chekrezi

Wahsington, D.C., October 7, 1920

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[Oct. 15/20]

Constantine A. Chekrezi, Commissioner of Albania to the United States,

States he has been repeatedly instructed by his goverment to ask for an interview with the President for the purpose of conveying to the President an expression of the profound gratitude of the people of Albania who cannot possibly lose sight of the fact that by this time they might have been under foreign rule were it not for the firm stand taken in their behalf by the greatest benefactor of the Albanian nation. Is sailing for Europe at an early date and will consider his mission to the United States as a failure if he is not able to gratify this most ardent wish of his and of the people and goverment he is representing in the United States. Refers to the fact that Albania has not so far been recognized by the United States, because of which he is making this request direct to the President instead of through the State Department.

[Wrote State 10/16/20]

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THE ALBANIAN COMMISSIONER TO THE UNITED STATES Washington, D. C. "The Portland"

October 9, 1920

Hon. Joseph P. Tumulty, Secretary to the President, The White House, Washington, D.C.

My dear Mr. Secretary;

Conscious and ever mindful of the transcedent services rendered to Albania by the President of the United States who, in defending her national rights and interests, went so far as to actually save her from dismemberment, my Government, interpreting faithfully the wishes of the people, has repeatedly instructed me to ask for an interview with the President for the purpose of conveying to him the expression of the profound gratitude of our people, who cannot possibly lose sight of the fact that, by this time, they might have been under foreign rule were it not for the firm stand taken on their behalf by the greatest benefactor of the Albanian nation.

However, I have so far thought it advisable to make such a request because of the thought that the President is beset with so many duties and exactions; and if I do make the request at the present time, it is because it cannot be possibly delayed any longer, and, on the other hand, I had be wanting in obedience to my Government. The fact is that I am instructed to sail for Europe at an early date, and I would justly consider my mission to the United States as a failure if I will not be able to gratify this most ardent wish of mine and of the people and Government I am representing in the United States. Truly, the state of mind of the Albanian people is a very pathetic one at this point: for, while they have not let any opportunity to pass without giving a testimonial of their gratitude toward the President, thinking at the same time that I, their representative in this country, have already brought to his knowledge their grateful action, as I am requested and expected to do, yet they cannot bring themselves to the belief that I have no standing with the American Government, inasmuch as Albania has, unfortunately, been not recognized so far by the United States, a state of things that compels me to make this request through instead of through the Department of State. These feelings of the Albanian people are illustrated

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by the action of the population of the city of Scutari, the largest in Albania, that is now erecting, though public subscriptions, a monument dedicated to the President of the United States as a testimonial of their everlasting gratitude for his noble action in saving that city from incorporation in Serbia. Yet, so far, I have not been able to inform the President of this tribute to his noble principles. In addition, there are a great many other expressions of gratefulness from the people as a whole as well as from individual municipalities that I would very deeply appreciate the honor of laying them before him.

May I hope that I will ne fortunate enough to do so?

Believe me, Sir,

Your most obedient and faithful servant,

C. A. Chekrezi Commissioner of Albania to the United States

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