Paris Peace Conf. 180.03401/106
Notes of a Meeting Held in Mr. Lloyd George’s Residence at 23, Rue Nitot on Tuesday, April 8, at 11 a.m.
- United States of America
- Colonel House
- Mr. Auchincloss
- M. Clemenceau
- British Empire
- Mr. Lloyd George
- Sir Maurice Hankey
- M. Orlando
- Count Aldrovandi.
- United States of America
1. Mr. Lloyd George read General Smuts’ telegram, No. 3 received on April 7th.
Hungary. General smuts’ Mission Sir Maurice Hankey stated that a paraphrase of this telegram (Appendix 1) was being prepared and would be circulated in the afternoon.
Mr. Lloyd George said that he hoped that General Smuts would by this time have received the telegram sent on the previous afternoon, and would alter his plans so as to proceed to French and Roumanian Headquarters.
M. Orlando read the telegram he had received from Switzerland. The Swiss Government had informed the Italian Government that a Soviet would be declared in Vienna on May 14, and suggested that the best way to avert trouble there was for the Allied and Associated Powers to occupy Vienna.
2. Programme of the Supreme Council Mr. Lloyd George produced a list prepared by Sir Maurice Hankey under his instructions of the subjects awaiting consideration by the Supreme Council (Appendix 2). He suggested that it was desirable if possible to bring the Germans soon to Versailles. For this it had not seemed to him necessary that the whole of the boundaries of the whole of the new states, for example, Poland and Czecho-Slovakia, should be fixed, so long as the boundaries of the enemy states were clearly fixed.
Colonel House suggested that the enemy states should be invited now to come to Versailles some few weeks hence. He did not wish to deprive the Peace Conference of sufficient time to complete this [Page 60] work, but he thought that ample notice should be given to the enemy, and that this might be given now.
M. Clemenceau said it would not alter the situation to get the Germans here now. There was revolution all through Central Europe. We were sending food to Germany, but so far it had made no difference. It must not be hoped that because you induced the Germans here now, you could get people who would still represent Germany later on.
Mr. Lloyd George agreed. He read a telegram he had received from the Secretary of State for War to the effect that all his military advisers reported that the situation in Germany was fast approaching a catastrophe for lack of food and raw material. To-day came the news that Hungary had declared a Soviet. It would be necessary when the Germans came to Versailles to ask whom they represented; for example, did they represent Bavaria?
Colonel House asked what ought to be done if the Germans refused to sign.
Mr. Lloyd George said that this was a matter in its military aspects for Marshal Foch, who should be asked to consider it with General Wilson,1 General Diaz,2 and General Bliss, and in its naval aspects for Admiral Wemyss,3 who should consider it with the Allied Admirals in Paris.
(This proposal was agreed to and Sir Maurice Hankey was instructed to draft letters to Marshal Foch and Admiral Wemyss respectively.)
The letters attached (Appendix 3) were approved. The letter to Admiral Wemyss was signed by M. Clemenceau. M. Mantoux undertook to communicate the letter to Marshal Foch to the Ministry of War in order that a French translation might be prepared and signed by M. Clemenceau and transmitted to Marshal Foch. (A copy of the letter actually addressed to Marshal Foch is attached herewith).3a
3. Economic Commission It was agreed that the Economic Commission should be asked to send in its report at once.
4. The Saar Valley Mr. Lloyd George said that the report prepared by M. Tardieu, Dr. Haskins, and Mr. Headlam-Morley4 on the Saar Valley was to the effect that no really workable scheme could be drawn up on the basis that they had been given.[Page 61]
He thought therefore that it would be necessary to adopt some other scheme. He then read extracts from three alternative schemes which had been submitted to him at an earlier stage by Mr. Headlam-Morley. The scheme which attracted him most was scheme C. which would create a new state in the Saar Valley, somewhat larger than had hitherto been proposed, in customs union with France and for which France would have a mandate from the League of Nations.5 He handed copies of these schemes to M. Clemenceau (who undertook to consult M. Tardieu about it) and Col. House. He promised to send a copy to M. Orlando. (Appendix IV).
(The Meeting then adjourned).
Villa Majestic, Paris, 8.4.19.[Page 63] [Page 66]
- Field Marshal Sir Henry H. Wilson, British Military Representative on the Supreme War Council; member of the Interallied Military and Naval Committee.↩
- Gen. Armando Diaz, Chief of the General Staff of the Italian Army; member of the Interallied Military and Naval Committee.↩
- Admiral Sir Rosslyn Wemyss, British First Sea Lord and Chief of the Naval General Staff; member of the Interallied Military and Naval Committee.↩
- Not printed.↩
- French, American, and British members respectively of the Special Commission on the Saar Valley.↩
- Scheme C actually did not provide that France would have a mandate from the League of Nations for the Saar Basin; such a mandate was provided for in Schemes A and B. See appendix IV, p. 66.↩
- Ante, p. 41.↩
- Report No. 1 of the Committee for the Study of Territorial Questions Relating to Roumania and Yugoslavia (Commission on Roumanian and Yugoslav Affairs) was not issued until April 6, 1919, but the proposed frontier between Roumania and Hungary had been discussed at earlier meetings of the Committee, of which minutes had been issued.↩
- See the military convention between the Allies and Hungary, signed at Belgrade November 13, 1918, vol. ii, p. 183.↩
- See vol. ii, p. 175.↩
- This memorandum does not accompany file copy of the minutes.↩
- This draft resolution does not accompany file copy of the minutes↩
- The reference is to a hypothetical annex, which would define the boundaries of the Saar Basin; such an annex did not accompany the text of Schemes A and B.↩