File No. 763.72119/1222
The Greek Legation to the Department of State
Upon examination of the speeches delivered by the President of the United States of America and His Excellency Mr. Lloyd George defining the war aims of the Allies, the Royal Government has the honor to submit to the consideration of the Government of the United States the remarks suggested thereby.
The Royal Government thinks it would be beneficial to let the small Allied states be represented at any meeting of the representatives of the great Allied Powers for the purpose of finally determining the Entente’s peace terms or at the very least to give them an opportunity to be heard before those terms are specifically defined.
The Royal Government, standing upon the repeated declarations of the Entente great Powers that they are fighting for the good and freedom of the small nationalities, holds that plain justice demanded that the latter should be allowed to expound the bases of their claims. Some of those nationalities, Serbia and Roumania for instance, have desiderata which on certain points do not accord with those of some of the great Allied Powers. It is, therefore, imperative that the several questions which will lie at the foundation of the peace proposed by the Entente Powers should be jointly discussed by all the parties concerned in order to stave off any cause for future misunderstanding.
With special reference to Greece the Royal Government feels bound to add that she entered the conflict unconditionally. There is more: The double-dealing perfidious policy imposed upon Greece by the fallen régime deprived her of the opportunity to present her standpoint which other states were able to do after entering the war. Greece, relying on her great allies and the policy outlined by them, never had occasion to define it. She feels sure that her national interests will be safeguarded when peace comes. But the Royal Government thinks it ought to be heard so as to define its ideas and national claims that must be settled. The head of the Royal Government, Mr. Venizelos, has always given evidence of great moderation, and the Powers may therefore rest assured that they will have in no wise to deal with demands inconsistent with the principles upon which their policy is based or impossible of realization.
The Royal Government, convinced that the Entente great Powers sincerely desire to bring about a settlement that will insure lasting peace, has no doubt that they will accede to its request for at least a previous hearing.[Page 51]
The Royal Government in any event thinks it necessary to clear a point which the above-mentioned speeches have left in the dark. The uncertainty in which the east Macedonia question remains has created in Greece a suspicion that it is not the Allies’ concern. The unofficial explanations offered by the Allied Governments have dispelled that impression but public opinion in Greece is still under the influence of the remark that while the fallen regime secured through Germany’s pledge the integrity of Greek territory without any part taken in the war by Greece, her joining in the struggle on the Allies’ side might result in sacrificing that national integrity to the advantage of an enemy whose only title is that it will become the Prussia of the East and enthrall, directly or indirectly, the other Balkan peoples.
What would be needed to dispel this uneasy feeling is a declaration that the enemies of the Entente shall be compelled to evacuate Allied territory occupied by them and that the deported inhabitants shall be reinstated in their homes.
The Royal Government further calls attention to the fact that while the non-Turkish population living in Turkey has been given, particularly in Mr. Lloyd George’s speech, the assurance that they shall be finally freed from the Ottoman yoke, the Hellenic nationality, numbering several millions, was left out. The Royal Government thinks that plain justice demands such a declaration for it cannot be that general liberation will leave the Greek race, the most ancient one in those parts, alone in bondage to Young Turk nationalism.
The Royal Government is convinced that the Government of the United States, which has constantly repeated its firm decision to guarantee their freedom to the oppressed peoples, will take into earnest consideration the remarks which the Royal Government has the honor to submit to it and which it feels sure will be found to be just and necessary.
[Received January 29.]