FOREIGN RELATIONS: Messersmith's Nose

George Strausser Messersmith was U.S. consul general in Berlin when Hermann Goring paid him a call one day. Hitler's No. 2 man was in his usual arrogant mood. He swept his hand over a map of South America. There was one of Germany's spheres of influence, he boasted, and began pounding the table. Messersmith stopped him. "This is my house," Messersmith said coldly. "No one pounds the table here but me. If there is any pounding done, I will do it."

This is the man whom the State Department chose last week to run the U.S. Embassy in Argentina, a...

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