763.72/12361: Telegram

The Ambassador in Italy ( Page ) to the Secretary of State

2406. Regarding sudden change on the part of Austro-Hungarian officers to Jugo-Slav officers. I have received information from the Government here that a considerable number Austro-Hungarian officers, German in sentiment and previously bitter enemies of the Slavs, now embodied in Jugo-Slav state as officers. It cites case of Lieutenant Marshal Istvanovich who took active part in taking of Belgrade in 1915, now commander Jugo-Slav military corps of Lubiana. Also lieutenant who torpedoed Italian warship Garibaldi and was decorated for it now seen wearing Jugo-Slav cockade. Peculiar situation thus is created by which enemy forces directed [Page 312]and constituted by German or Austro-Hungarian officers are transformed into alleged friendly forces claiming exercise of same rights as Allies.

Nelson Page