Paris Peace Conf. 180.03501/22


Notes of a Meeting of the Heads of Delegations of the Five Great Powers Held in M. Pichon’s Room at the Quai d’Orsay, Paris, on Saturday, August 2, 1919, at 3:30 p.m.

  • Present
    • America, United States of
      • Hon. F. L. Polk.
    • Secretary
      • Mr. L. Harrison.
    • British Empire
      • The Rt. Hon. A. J. Balfour,
    • Secretaries
      • Mr. H. Norman.
      • Sir Ian Malcolm.
    • France
      • M. Clemenceau.
      • M. Pichon.
    • Secretaries
      • M. Dutasta.
      • M. Berthelot.
      • M. de St. Quentin
    • Italy
      • M. Tittoni.
    • Secretary
      • M. Paterno.
    • Japan
      • M. Matsui.
    • Secretary
      • M. Kawai.
Joint Secretariat
America, United States of Capt. Chapin.
British Empire Capt. E. Abraham.
France Capt. A. Portier.
Italy Lt.-Col. A. Jones.
Interpreter—Prof. P. J. Mantoux.

1. M. Clemenceau informed the Council that he had received a wireless message from Lt-Col. Romanelli, commanding the Italian Military Mission at Budapest. This message was addressed to M. Clemenceau. Situation in Hungary

M. Mantoux then read the dispatch contained in Appendix “A”.

M. Tittoni said that he thought there was some misunderstanding as to the acceptance of proposals by the Allied Powers. He did not think the Allied Powers had made any proposals, as was suggested in the message. He thought that what was alluded to was the plan explained by General Boehm1 to the Allied Representative in Vienna. He had himself received a telegram from Vienna, which did not quite agree with the message read out. According to his information, General Boehm and M. Peidl2 had told the Prince Borghese3 and [Page 481] Colonel Cunninghame4 that if the Roumanians were stopped, they would be able to form a Government more completely representative of public opinion.

M. Clemenceau asked whether it was General Boehm who had caused the Revolution.

M. Tittoni said that the proposals had been made by General Boehm as representative of the Socialists and of the Labour Party. It was necessary that the Allies should take precautions not to be deceived a second time.

M. Clemenceau observed that there was no motive for negotiating a second armistice. There was already one.

Mr. Balfour said that he was in agreement. He thought the proposals referred to were those contained in the message discussed on the 26th of July. (See H. D. 14, Appendix “A”.5) He had no objection to these proposals, but what he did object to was that the responsibility for them should be laid upon the Allies. The Council was concerned with the armistice and its observance. It was not concerned with the internal Government of Hungary. No proposals had been made by the Council. That was the first point that should be made clear.

M. Clemenceau said that the second point to make clear was that there was already an armistice, and no need of a new one.

Mr. Balfour said that it was clear that hostilities must stop, but no new contract was required for this. The Roumanians could be told to stop by the Council, and they must obey. The Hungarians must also be told that they were not authorised by the armistice to advance.

M: Clemenceau said that on this subject he wished to ask Marshal Foch a question. Was it not true that the present line of the Roumanians was quite different to the line they held under the armistice?

Marshal Foch said that the line was in fact quite different. It was at the present time the line of the Theiss.

Mr. Balfour said that the Council about the 13th of June (See C. F. 65, Minute 12 and Appendices6), had ordered the Roumanians to go back from the line of the Theiss within their own frontiers. They had not done so. Their excuse had been that as the Hungarians had not disarmed as they were bound to do under the armistice, it was impossible for them to risk giving up a defendable line for one which was strategically far worse. Under the present circumstances, he thought that the Roumanians should be ordered to withdraw to the line originally laid down for them.

M. Tittoni thought that an order of this kind should be deferred. [Page 482] He thought for the time being that the Roumanians should be ordered to stop on the positions they now held. If the Hungarians gave evidence of good behaviour, the Roumanians could then be told to withdraw within their own frontiers. If, on the other hand, the Hungarians were again deceiving the Allies, any withdrawal of the Roumanians would be regretted. Should the Hungarians do all that was required of them, it would be easy to order the Roumanians to withdraw, and they would certainly comply.

M. Pichon said that there was another reason in favour of this. When the Roumanians had been assigned the armistice line, they had made it clear that it was indefensible. Nevertheless, they had conformed to it. Then they had been attacked, and, in order to repel attack, they had advanced to the Theiss. It would clearly be unfair to them to order them now to abandon that line. It was the Hungarians who had really violated the essential clauses of the armistice by maintaining a larger army than was allowed to them. The first necessity, therefore, was to force the Hungarians to reduce their forces.

Mr. Balfour said that he thought there was no great difference between his views and those of M. Tittoni and M. Pichon. Historically, however, he thought that M. Pichon was not quite accurate. He did not think that the Roumanian advance to the Theiss had been made as a consequence of attack by the Hungarians. The Roumanians had gone to the Theiss, and the Council had stopped them there. The Council had then ordered them to go back, and they did not do so. They had given no official reason for this, but, privately, M. Bratiano had explained that he must keep a defendable line against the large Hungarian army.

M. Clemenceau said that this explanation had also been given officially.

Mr. Balfour said that he had not been aware of this. In any case, the Hungarians had attacked the Roumanians on the plea that the latter had not observed the armistice. The Hungarians had been defeated, and Bela Kun’s Government had fallen. He quite agreed that the Council should avoid making the same mistake as before, but, personally, he would not make it a condition that they should have a humane and orderly Government or any specific kind of Government whatever. This was an interference in their domestic affairs. He would adhere strictly to the armistice, and call on the Hungarians to observe it. It might further be added that if the Government set up in Hungary were such as could be recognised, the Allies would make peace with it speedily.

M. Tittoni said that he thought there was really agreement. He [Page 483] pointed out that General Boehm at Vienna had not asked for a withdrawal of the Roumanian troops, but for their advance to stop.

M. Clemenceau said that the Council had no cognisance of General Boehm.

Mr. Polk asked whether the Council had not made a declaration in any manner tying its hands.

M. Clemenceau said that all that had been done was to make a general declaration to the world (H. D. 15, para. 27)

Mr. Polk asked whether the Council was not tied in any other way?

M. Clemenceau said it was not. It appeared to him that the Council was agreed that the understanding alleged in the message, between General Boehm and Prince Borghese was not binding on the Council, and that it was unnecessary to negotiate any new armistice as the old one was still in existence.

M. Tittoni said that though there was no agreement between General Boehm and Prince Borghese, nevertheless, the Allied Agents in Vienna had been instructed to conduct conversations with General Boehm, the result of which had been certain proposals agreed to by General Boehm.

It was then decided to send a telegram (see Appendix “B”) in reply to the wireless message received from Lt. Col. Romanelli at Budapesth, dated August 1st.

2. M. Clemenceau said that he had received a question from the Danish Government regarding the cost of the troops of occupation during the plebiscite period in Slesvig. The Danish Government wished to know whether expenses under the head of “Plebiscite Expenses” were to include the maintenance of these troops. Danish Request Regarding Expenses of Plebiscite in Slesvig

It was decided to notify the Danish Government in answer to their Note of August 2nd, that the Inter-Allied Military and Naval expenses of occupation during the period of the Plebiscite, should be included in the general expenses of the Plebiscite.

3. M. Clemenceau said that he had received a request from the Danish Government for the immediate despatch of warships to Flensburg, so that in case of need, order should be maintained by their help in the plebiscite zones of Slesvig. It was decided to notify the Danish Government in answer to their Note of August 2nd, that in the opinion of the Council, the British warship now present in Danish waters, together with a French warship at present on its way there, should suffice to maintain order. The British Admiral Commanding the Naval forces would [Page 484] be able to estimate the situation at Flensburg, and to take necessary measures. Danish Request for Warships at Flensburg

4. It was decided to refer to the Commission on Political Clauses the Articles proposed by the Greek Delegation for insertion in the Treaty of Peace with Bulgaria (see Appendix “C”). Reference to a Commission of Articles Proposed by the Greek Delegation for Insertion in the Treaty of Peace With Bulgaria

5. (Marshal Foch and the Military Representatives at Versailles entered the room.)Strength of the Bulgarian Army

Marshal Foch read a statement regarding the Bulgarian Forces (see Appendix “D”).

Mr. Balfour said that his comment on the conclusion of the statement read by Marshal Foch, was that it would appear that the Allies must make a Peace agreeable to Bulgaria because they were unable to enforce a disagreeable one. He was not very willing to acquiesce in such a conclusion unless it were inevitable.

Marshal Foch said that Bulgaria had nine Divisions. These Divisions were easily convertible to war strength. Against them were very weak Allied Forces. The British force consisted of 40 men—the Italian of one Battalion—the French of two Divisions, which would be reduced by demobilisation to 15,000 men. There were also two thin Roumanian Divisions—one Serbian Brigade & six Greek Divisions. The last represented the bulk of the available forces.

M. Clemenceau asked Marshal Foch what he thought of the military value of the Greek Divisions.

Marshal Foch said that he was not prepared to express any opinion.

M. Pichon observed that General Guillaumat9 had thought well of them.

Marshal Foch said that the troops that General Guillaumat had thought well of, were National Defence troops. Since the check received at Smyrna by the Greek Army, it was not unlikely that the morale of the Greek troops had suffered.

Mr. Balfour said he would like to enquire whether the Military stores, which, according to a clause of the Armistice, had been deposited under Allied guard within Bulgarian territory, could be seized by the Bulgarian Army should it wish to resist the orders of the Conference?

Marshal Foch replied that the Bulgarian Army could probably seize them.

Mr. Balfour said it was regrettable that such a provision had been made in the Armistice.

Marshal Foch remarked that when the Armistice was made, better terms could not be obtained.

[Page 485]

M. Clemenceau asked whether a portion of the military material had not been withdrawn outside Bulgarian territory.

General Weygand said that the firing mechanism of one-twentieth of the rifles—one-tenth of the machine guns, and one-sixth of the guns, had been removed to Salonika. The remainder was still on Bulgarian soil under Allied guard.

Mr. Balfour asked whether the Allied guard would be sufficient to protect these stores against the Bulgarian Army?

General Weygand replied that he thought not, but he suggested that General Baird,10 who had just come from Bulgaria, should be asked to make a statement on the present condition of affairs there.

Marshal Foch said he thought it would be well to hear General Baird. He thought the Bulgarian Government was not inclined to resist the Conference, but it was possible that the population might rise and gain possession of these stores.

M. Clemenceau said that he was not very much alarmed by the Bulgarian situation. He agreed with Marshal Foch that the Government was unlikely to resist. As to popular risings, he thought they would not be very serious. Popular forces did not count much against regular troops. There were in all 15,000 French troops and 6 Greek Divisions, which should, and must, act. Greece was particularly interested, and her troops would doubtless behave well when acting in a national cause. Moreover, some of the Greek troops in Asia Minor could, if necessary, be recalled. If, however, it were required, Great Britain and Italy would doubtless come to the rescue. Moreover, he did not think that Bulgaria by herself would defy the whole victorious Alliance. Germany had been defeated, and the only quarter to which Bulgaria could look was the Entente. Germany had not dared to defy the Conference, and it was most unlikely that Bulgaria would. He quite agreed, however, that it would be useful to hear General Baird, and, if then thought necessary, to make a communication to the Bulgarian Delegation at Neuilly.

Mr. Balfour said that he was inclined to agree with M. Clemenceau’s estimate of the situation. Unfortunately, Bulgaria was not the only quarter in which the Allies were weak. The American Congress, the British House of Commons and the French Chamber were all anxious to demobilise.

M. Clemenceau said that modern war differed from wars in the past, and the weakness indicated by Mr. Balfour, which came about at the cessation of hostilities, applied to the enemy as well as to ourselves. He himself had apprehended resistance by the Germans to the terms relating to Poland. Germany, however, had acquiesced. He felt sure that Bulgaria would do likewise.

[Page 486]

(It was decided to request General Baird, through the British delegation, to be present at a meeting of the Council on August 4th, and to make a statement on the present situation in Bulgaria.)

6. General Weygand read a letter from General Nollet11 and a covering letter from Marshal Foch on the subject of allowances for Allied Officers on the Missions of Control in Berlin (see Appendix “E”). Scale of Pay for Officer Attached of Control in Germany

It was decided to refer to the Military Representatives at Versailles for study and report, the question of allowances for Allied Officers on the Missions of Control in Germany.

7. General Belin read the report of the Military Representatives at Versailles (see Appendix “F”).

M. Tittoni said that it was important that the prisoners should be repatriated in small groups. One of the reasons for obstacles raised by Poland, Lithuania and other neighbouring States, was the fear that large batches of Russian prisoners should escape and take to looting. Repatriation of Russian Prisoners of War Interned in Germany

General Belin said that this was a point of detail which the Commission might deal with.

Mr. Polk asked whether General Belin could make any estimate of the time that the whole operation would take.

General Belin said that General Malcolm12 thought it should be completed before the end of the year.

Mr. Polk said that from the American point of view there was a difficulty. There were about 800 American Officers and men on duty with the American Mission in Germany. Owing to the American demobilisation, no money would be available for the upkeep of this Mission, nor for the supplies of food for the Russian Prisoners of War for the length of time indicated by General Belin. He pointed out that there were originally two million Russian prisoners in Germany, but that this total had now been reduced to 200,000. He suggested that it would be as well to charge the German Government with the care of the remainder.

General Bliss said that the substance of what he meant to say had already been explained by Mr. Polk. He would recall that it was a report by Mr. Hoover13 to the effect that the funds available for the upkeep of these Russian Prisoners, had been exhausted which had led to the examination of the subject at Versailles. He and Mr. White had recommended in Washington that the Armies of Occupation on the Rhine should be made responsible for the care of these prisoners, [Page 487] but this view had not prevailed. It was now necessary to withdraw all American conscripted men from Europe. In support of this he read the following letter:—

general headquarters
american expeditionary forces
office of the chief of staff

August 2, 1919.

Dear General Buss:

The Commander-in-Chief desires me to request you to use your best efforts with your colleagues to hasten the permission for him to withdraw our officers and troops in Berlin. At the time of the signing of the Peace orders had already been given for the withdrawal of the entire mission numbering approximately 700 persons. At the request of Marshal Foch on the 30th of June, General Pershing agreed to suspend the orders for a few days. On taking the matter up again on his return from London on the 24th of July, Marshal Foch informed him that the matter of the withdrawal of our representation there had been taken out of his hands and was vested in the Commission to Negotiate Peace. With the Conference between you and me, on the subject since that time, you are familiar.

Without assuming to discuss the desirability of the United States maintaining troops in Berlin after Germany has ratified the Peace, in connection with the repatriation of Russian prisoners of war, we have imperative orders from the War Department to get all temporary personnel home by a certain time. It is necessary from that standpoint that the most expeditious action be had and a decision reached at the earliest date possible which will enable General Pershing to withdraw all officers and men now on that mission.

May I ask that you will help us in this matter.

Sincerely yours,

J. G. Harbord
Chief of Staff

General Tasker H. Bliss,
American Commission to Negotiate Peace, Hotel Crillon—Paris.

He suggested that the only solution was for the Allies to relieve the Americans of their share in this work, or for Germany to take over the whole thing.

Mr. Balfour said that he did not think the scheme elaborated at Versailles very practical. What was proposed was a Commission. A Commission alone could do nothing. The American share alone at present required the services of 700 men. The British Red Cross had, he believed, a considerable personnel, and undertook a considerable share of the work. Their funds were exhausted, and their personnel was being recalled. It was clear that this system could not be continued. A Commission without an Army behind it, could not act as substitute. The Americans could not provide men. Without consulting Experts, he was prepared to say that the British could not supply any. He doubted whether France or Italy could find them. The system would, therefore, break down. There was another objection. [Page 488] If the old arrangement were patched up, it would appear that the Allies still regarded themselves as responsible. If they undertook the responsibility and failed to carry out their undertakings, they would be discredited. He thought the responsibility should be repudiated. After Peace, it was quite unnecessary for the Allies to continue supporting Russian prisoners taken by the Germans. He noticed that it was suggested that 145,000 Russians should be repatriated by rail. It would be extremely difficult to prevail upon the Poles and Lithuanians to forward them over land. Meanwhile, he wished to ask who should feed them. Another 70,000 or 80,000 were to go by sea. He had the greatest doubt whether shipping could be found for them except at the expense of more vital services. He therefore recommended that the responsibility be thrown on the Germans. It was a responsibility they should have always borne. If the Germans then applied to the Allies for assistance, it would be time to consider what could be done. This policy was clear and freed the Allies from a task which they could not undertake without incurring discredit.

Mr. Polk then suggested the following resolution:—

That the Council of the Allied and Associated Powers notify the Government at once that all restrictions heretofore placed on the repatriation of the Russian prisoners of war in Germany, are removed, and that henceforth the responsibility of supporting them must rest with the German Government.

(This proposal was accepted.)

8. M. Clemenceau said that the question was whether or not the Baltic Commission should concern itself with the question of access to the Baltic. Proposed Treaty Regarding Access to the Baltic

Mr. Balfour said that access to the Baltic from the North Sea at present depended not on any Treaty, but on immemorial custom. It was now suggested that this custom should be regularised by formal Inter-Allied sanction. This would establish a common régime for all the channels. In the Sound and the Great Belt, traffic, he believed, had never been stopped by the neutrals on their shores. They interfered neither with trading vessels nor with warships. In the Little Belt, however, the Germans had stopped traffic, and had laid mines. They could do so again, and this was not contrary either to the law of nations or to the practice thereof. If the proposals now before the Council (Appendix “G”) were accepted, all the channels would be made free for traffic. Whether it was worth while to engage in difficult negotiations to obtain this, he did not know.

M. della Torretta explained that the Commission had not examined the merits of the question, as it did not know whether it was empowered to examine it at all.

[Page 489]

Mr. Polk questioned whether it would not be better to send the question to a Special Commission rather than to the Baltic Commission. He understood that the Baltic Commission was not composed of naval men. This appeared to be a naval question.

M. Tittoni suggested that naval experts be attached to the Baltic Commission for the purpose of examining the question.

(It was decided that the report of the British Delegation relative to access to the Baltic Sea be referred to the Baltic Commission, assisted by the naval experts, for examination and report.

The Baltic Commission should be responsible for summoning a joint meeting.)

9. (It was decided to refer the letter of the Roumanian Delegation dated August 2nd—Appendix “H”—proposing an amendment to the Economic Clauses of the Bulgarian Peace Treaty to the Economic Commission, for examination and report.)Amendment Proposed by Roumanian Delegation for Insertion in the Economic Clauses of the Treaty With Bulgaria

(The meeting then adjourned.)

Villa Majestic, Paris, August 2, 1919.

Appendix A to HD–22

[Despatch From the Commander of the Italian Military Mission at Budapest (Romanelli)]


Radio (no number) from Budapest, August 1, 1919.

To His Excellency Georges Clemenceau, President of the Conference, Paris.

The Hungarian Government of the Soviet Republic (Republic of Councils) has resigned today and been replaced by a Government which has declared its acceptance of proposals of the Allied Powers in the form in which they were agreed to at Vienna on July 25 by Prince Borghese, Minister Plenipotentiary of Italy, and Colonel Cunninghame, chief of the British Military Mission at Vienna.

The new Government has just charged the undersigned, in his position as sole representative of the said Powers at Budapest, to deliver to the commanders of the hostile armies a proposal for an armistice, which, while awaiting the decisions which Your Excellency may care to make, I have taken the liberty of transmitting directly to the said commanders, with a view to preventing further bloodshed. The proposals offered are as follows:

While awaiting the decisions of the Supreme Council of the Allied and Associated Powers, to suspend as soon as possible all hostilities [Page 490] between the Allied Armies and the Hungarian Army;
To stop as a consequence all forward movement of the Allied troops;
To arrange an armistice with the commander of the Hungarian Army establishing provisional lines of occupation until the President of the Peace Conference has announced his decisions on the subject. The Hungarian Government demands insistently that the armistice line for the Roumanian Army be fixed at the Tisza.

Commander of the Italian Military Mission Lieutenant Colonel

Appendix B to HD–22


From President Clemenceau

To Lieutenant-Colonel Romanelli at Budapest.

I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your wireless telegram of August 1,16 announcing the resignation of the Government of the Soviet Republic, and the formation of a new Hungarian Government, and the declarations made by the latter have been brought to the knowledge of the Supreme Council.

The Allied Council is of the opinion that it has no reason for interfering in the domestic politics of the Hungarian Republic and hence cannot take into consideration the proposals suggested by the two members of the Allied Missions at Vienna.

The sole recognized bases for relations between the Allied and Associated Powers and Hungary are: 1) the armistice of November 13, 1918,17 whose conditions must be respected by the new Hungarian Government, particularly concerning the demobilization of the army; 2) the notification of the Peace Conference of June 1318 for the establishment of a line on which the Hungarian troops must be kept in the direction of the Czecho-Slovak and Rumanian frontiers.

The Allied Council will only ask the Rumanian Government to stop its troops in the positions that they now occupy by reason of the aggression on the part of the Hungarian Army, and it will not ask the Rumanians to withdraw until the new Government at Budapest has conformed strictly to the terms of the armistice.

The Allied and Associated Powers are waiting for the new Hungarian Government to prove itself by its acts, and they hope that the [Page 491] ascendancy of a Government which will carry out its pledges and will represent the Hungarian nation will hasten the moment of the reestablishment of peace and the resumption of regular economic relations.


Appendix C to HD–22


Articles To Be Inserted in the Treaty of Peace With Bulgaria Proposed by the Greek Delegation

The articles inserted in this column are those of the Treaty of Peace with Germany.
Art. 32–33–34. Bulgaria recognizes the full sovereignty of Greece over the territories situated to the south of . . . . . . renounces in its favor all rights and title over them.
Art. 35. A commission composed of five members, three of whom shall be appointed by the Principal Allied Powers, one by Greece, and one by Bulgaria, shall be set up fifteen days after the signature of the present treaty to settle on the spot the new boundary line between Greece and Bulgaria.
Decisions shall be taken by a majority vote, and shall be binding on the interested parties.
Art. 36. In the territories thus ceded to Greece, Greek nationality shall be definitively acquired in full right and to the exclusion of Bulgarian nationality, by Bulgarian nationals habitually resident in these territories. Nevertheless, Bulgarian nationals who became resident in the territories after October 5/18, 1912, shall not acquire Greek nationality without a permit from the Greek Government.
Art. 37. Within the two years following the coming into force of the present treaty, Bulgarian nationals over 18 years of age habitually resident in the territories transferred from Bulgarian to Greek sovereignty will be entitled to opt for Bulgarian nationality. Option by a husband will cover his wife, and option by parents or guardians will cover children under 18 years of age. Persons who have exercised the above right to [Page 492] opt must within the ensuing twelve months transfer their place of residence to Bulgaria.
They may carry with them their movable property of every description. No export or import duties may be imposed upon them in connection with the removal of such property.
They will be entitled to retain their immovable property in the territories acquired by Greece.
Art. 38. Greece will enter into possession of all goods and properties of the Bulgarian State situated in the ceded territories without having to pay or credit the Bulgarian state under this head. This provision covers all movable and immovable goods of the public or private domain with all rights of whatever nature that belonged to the Bulgarian state or to its administrative subdivisions.
Property of the Crown or private property of the present or former King shall be considered part of the public domain.
Art. 67. The Greek Government is substituted in all the rights of the Bulgarian state over all the railways which were administered by it and which are actually working or under construction.
The same shall apply to the rights of the Bulgarian state with regard to railway and tramway concessions within the territory ceded to Greece.
This substitution shall not entail any payment on the part of the Greek state to the Bulgarian state.
The frontier railway stations shall be established by a subsequent agreement.

Appendix D to HD–22


commander in chief of the allied armies general headquarters, 3d section

No. 3656

Note on the Condition of the Bulgarian Forces

I—Armistice of September 29, 191821

The Armistice Commission [convention?] of September 29 provided [Page 493] for the immediate demobilization of the Bulgarian Army with the exception of a grouping of all arms including:

  • 3 divisions of infantry of 16 battalions each,
  • 4 regiments of cavalry.

Two of these divisions should be employed in the defense of the eastern frontier of Bulgaria, the third in guarding the railways.

The matériel belonging to the demobilized units should be grouped at points to be designated by the Allied High Command and then warehoused by the Bulgarian authorities under the control of the Allies.

The convention contains no stipulation concerning the limitation to be maintained on the peace footing. These conditions which now appear to provide only insufficient guarantees, were justified at the time by the advantage to the Allied Armies, proceeding with their operations in Serbia, of delegating to the Bulgarian Army the task of providing their cover facing Turkey and the army of Mackensen.22

II—Execution of the Armistice Conditions and Modifications Explained

The convention has been executed in its entirety by Bulgaria. Following the cessation of hostilities in the Balkans, General d’Esperey even obtained, without any difficulty, the demobilization of the three remaining divisions. All of the Bulgarian Army was thus demobilized.

But, considering that measures were still necessary to render the Bulgarian Army incapable of re-mobilizing quickly and resisting the will of the Allied Powers, General Franchet d’Esperey proposed on May 19 to the President of the Council, the following provisions:*

  • Reduction of the Bulgarian Army to 3 infantry divisions of 12 battalions each, having only a police function.
  • Immediate dissolution of all other units or depots.
  • Limitation of the total effectives to 25,000 men.
  • Effective Allied control of all war materials.

These proposals were transmitted to the Peace Conference, and have not been acted upon until the present.

III—Present Situation of the Bulgarian Army

Even while remaining within the limits of the Armistice Convention of September 29, which is still in force, the Bulgarian Government none the less possesses today important resources, which it would be easy to expand rapidly, at least in part: [Page 494]

On the first of July, its Army included 10 infantry divisions on a peace footing, strongly established with officers and specialists. The total of the effectives was 83,000 men.

Vast quantities of war materials (arms and munitions) were available and we could supervise only a very small part of it.

The factories in Sofia were prepared to resume a daily production of 70,000 cartridges and to repair the matériel.

Finally, important stocks of powder exist at Sofia and Choumla.

It is proper to observe, however, that the Army lacks horses, trucks, and benzine.

Consequently the complete mobilization of large units could be carried out only with difficulty; but it would be easy rapidly to fill out the ranks again of the infantry regiments and even of units of the other branches of the service.

In addition General Franchet d’Esperey ordered General Chrétien§ to require by July 15, a certain number of guarantees including, among others:

Suppression of two divisions, one by July 15, the other by August 1;

Disbanding of the military school at Sofia;

Stopping the filling up again to a full complement in horses of the cavalry and artillery;

Closing the arms repair factory of the Sofia arsenal.

According to the latest report of General Franchet d’Esperey, the Bulgarian Government would undertake to satisfy these conditions, and from the present moment its Army would not include more than 9 divisions on a peace footing of 12 battalions, making a total effective of about 80,000 men.

IV—Situation of the Allied Armies

Two French divisions of the Army of the Danube are assigned for the occupation of Bulgaria; one of them (the 30th Infantry Division) is en route.

It should be noted, on the other hand, that the 122d French Infantry Division is earmarked to guard the Straits.

Demobilization will have the effect within a month of reducing the combatant effectives of these three infantry divisions to a figure of 15,000 men.

[Page 495]

The English and Italian armies of occupation have not yet been designated.

Up to the present, only an English detachment of 40 men and an Italian battalion are provided for.

The Greeks have sent to Smyrna 5 divisions out of 11.

The Roumanians have the greater part of their forces at the Bessarabian and Hungarian fronts: only two divisions are in Walachia, in process of mobilization.

The Serbians have made important deductions from their detachments assigned to the supervision of Bulgaria. There remains at the border a force of one brigade.


Bulgaria can put in the line quite rapidly numerous and well armed effectives, capable of constituting, not a tactical army, but very strong resistant groupings, capable of resisting by force the execution of the conditions of the treaty of peace.

In order to modify, to its advantage, this dangerous situation, the Entente should demand the immediate dissolution of most of the existing units, and the delivery of the arms and munitions to the Allies.

But this demand could meet with a refusal.


The Great Powers do not have, on the spot, sufficient troops to impose by force the acceptance of such conditions; on the other hand, they do not appear disposed to send additional troops into Bulgaria;

The unengaged Serbian and Roumanian forces are weak or nonexistent; those of Greece are half taken up by the campaign in Asia Minor.

The total of these contingents, heterogeneous and divided by interest, moreover, would not be sufficient to break the Bulgarian mass; its intervention would only tend to arouse national sentiment in Bulgaria and aggravate conflicts.

The Bulgarian question will then be definitively settled by the treaty of peace.

But it is quite evident that the dangers which have just been pointed out, could arise, for the same reasons, if the Entente harshly imposes on Bulgaria conditions of peace which outrage her national sentiment.

It is important to bear this consideration in mind at the moment when the demobilization of its armies deprives the Entente of the means of having its decisions respected.

[Page 496]

Appendix E to HD–22


commander in chief of the allied armies general staff, 1st section general headquarters

No. 3597

From: Marshal Foch, Commander in Chief of the Allied Armies.

To: The President of the Council, President of the Peace Conference.

I have the honor to forward you herewith a letter from General Nollet, relative to the indemnities to be allowed to French officers who shall belong to the Commission of control of the military clauses.

I am of the opinion that it is necessary to insure to the French officers, during their stay in Berlin, a situation which, while removing any pre-occupation of a financial nature for them and their families, will permit them to have sufficient prestige with the Germans.

But, it seems that all the Allied officers who are to belong to the various Commissions of control should, from this point of view, be placed on an equal footing.

Furthermore, it must be observed that, the payment of the indemnities being incumbent upon the German Government, it seems that the fixation of them should be made by the Allied Governments.

If you share this point of view, I ask you to kindly entrust the study of this question to a Commission composed of the representatives of the various governments concerned.

I take the liberty of calling your attention to the urgent need of a decision, because of the difficulty in recruiting the officers who are to belong to the Commissions of control which are to be formed, so long as the material situation to be offered to them has not been determined.

F. Foch

Annex to Appendix B to HD–22


From: General Nollet, President of the Inter-Allied Military Control Commission.

To: Marshal of France, Commander-in-Chief of the Allied Armies.

I have the honor to submit for your consideration a plan for the pay and remuneration to be allotted to the Members of the Inter-Allied Military Control Commission.

[Page 497]

The Officers and Enlisted Men of the Commission will receive in the first place the pay and allowances which they received at their last station. In that way no modification will be introduced in their family situation.

Besides their pay and allowances, a monthly lump allowance, paid in advance and to count from the day the Mission leaves Paris until its return to Paris, will be allotted to the Officers and Enlisted Men.

This remuneration is figured on the basis of the indemnities at the present time allotted to the Dupont Mission, with a slight increase as proposed by the Controller of the Army, Gaillard, at the present time on a Mission in Berlin. Furthermore, it has seemed preferable that the indemnity be stated in marks, based on the present rate of 0.40 centimes. In determining the rate, a full account was taken of the fluctuations of the mark exchange, which will result from a resumption of international commerce and importations by Germany.

Finally, the indemnity was liberally figured in order to assure the prestige of the members of the French Mission in their contact with the German population and their foreign colleagues, and also to permit the selection of an indispensable elite. The living conditions of the Mission in Berlin, in a hostile center, cannot be compared to those of the Missions in Prague and Warsaw and should, consequently, be ameliorated by a satisfactory material situation.

As a result, the indemnities, imposed according to the conditions of the Peace Treaty, to be paid from the German budget, should be established as follows:


Brigadier Generals 12,000 marks
Colonels and Lieut. Colonels 9,000
Majors 7,000
Subaltern Officers 6,000

The Heads of Service to receive, besides, as a function indemnity:

General Officers (Not Heads of Mission) 2,500 marks
Colonels (Chiefs of Staff) 2,500
Colonels and Lieut. Colonels 2,000
Majors 1,800

Office expenses to be reimbursed upon the presentation of certified bills.

Travelling expenses to be handled in the same way. Officers to receive in advance, the amount of which would be fixed according to itinerary, the necessary funds.

Family expenses of travel to be reimbursed, based on the expenses of the trip both ways.

An indemnity of 2,000 francs for the purchase of clothes to be advanced before departure.

[Page 498]

B—Enlisted Men:

Resident Interpreters 4,000 marks
Non-Commissioned Officers 2,500
Enlisted Men 2,000

The travelling expenses of the Enlisted Men to be looked after by the President of the Commission, who would reimburse all certified bills presented. A necessary sum should be advanced for these expenses before the departure, the amount of which should be determined by the itinerary.

C—General, President of the Commission:

It is as yet difficult to judge the character of the functions which will devolve upon the General, President of the Commission. It will depend upon the nature of the relations that he will be instructed to assume with the German military authorities.

In the present state of affairs, based upon the indemnities now allowed to the Brigadier General, Chief of the Mission at Berlin, by taking into account the advice of Controller Gaillard, the monthly indemnity of the General, President of the Commission, should be 15,000 marks, plus 5,000 francs.

D—General Observations:

The billeting of the members of the Commission is to be provided for by the German Government, and should be arranged for by it.

Campaign allowances to be accorded to the Commission during their sojourn in Germany.

It should be understood that in case the German Government allots indemnities greater than those cited above to the Representatives of the Allied and Associated Governments, the excess should also be extended to the French Officers and Enlisted Men in the Commission.


Appendix F to HD–22


Report on the Means of Repatriation of Russian Prisoners Now in Germany and Maintained at the Cost of the Allies

By a Resolution, dated July 18, 1919,25 the Supreme Council of the Allied and Associated Powers directed the Military Representatives on the Supreme War Council at Versailles:—

“To study, in conjunction with the Naval Experts the means of repatriating the Russian Prisoners of War, maintained at the cost of the Allies, in Germany.”

[Page 499]

1. General Situation

(i) Approximate number of prisoners of war to be repatriated

The number of Russian prisoners of war interned in Germany amounted at the end of April last to 250,000 men (statement of the General presiding over the Commission charged with the repatriation of Russian prisoners of war, 14th May, 1919). After eliminating some 50,000 prisoners who did not wish to return to their homes (principle accepted by the Supreme Council of the Allied and Associated Powers) and some 8,000 Letts and Esthonians already in process of repatriation by German coasting vessels, the total number remaining to be repatriated amounts to about 190,000–200,000.

(ii) Advantages of Repatriation

The reduction to a minimum of the time during which the Russian prisoners of war interned in Germany will remain a source of expense to the Allied and Associated Powers.
The dispatch, though only to a small extent, of reinforcements to the Anti-Bolshevist armies.
The removal from Germany of Bolshevist propagandists, whom the Germans would certainly not hesitate to employ in neighbouring countries where they might wish to create trouble.

(iii) The Disadvantages of Repatriation

The repatriation of Russian prisoners of war would undoubtedly favour recruiting for the Red Armies.
This repatriation could not take place without a large use of maritime transport, and in consequence would cause, for a considerable length of time, a diminution in the tonnage at present available for the revictualling of the Allied countries.

2. General Conditions of Repatriation

It seems essential to lay down, as a preliminary condition, the necessity for some form of selection, the object of which would be to segregate those prisoners of war that are not suspected of Bolshevist tendencies, in order, firstly, that they should not be exposed to harsh reprisals, and secondly, to allow of their being drafted into the Anti-Bolshevist forces on different fronts, either as reinforcements to existing units, or as new organizations.*

It would also be of importance to consider the transport of this class of prisoners of war into the zones, where, if they could not be [Page 500] employed in the reconquest of their own country, they could at any rate be screened from all such nationalist rivalries as might diminish their fighting value, or bring about local conflicts.

Lastly, the departure of these contingents ought to be studied and worked out in such a way as to ensure their eventual concentration as near as possible to that portion of the front where they would be called upon to serve.

In this connection it would seem useful to indicate the various directions that repatriation would follow, on the basis of an approximate number of 200,000 Russian prisoners of war still interned in Germany:—

Great Russians 100,000 By rail.
Lithuanians 15,400
Letts 5,300
Esthonians 500 By sea—Danzig to Reval.
North Russians 10,000 } By sea from Stettin to Archangel
W. Siberians 17,000
Ukrainians 40,000 By sea to Odessa.
Georgians 2,200 By sea—Hambourg to Batum
Cossacks 1,400 By sea to Novorossiisk.
E. Siberians 5,000 By sea to Vladivostock.
Tartars 2,200 By sea to (?)
Armenians 1,000

3. Conclusions

It would seem that the different operations involved in the proposed repatriation cannot be prepared, nor carried out, except under the direction of an organization that is in close touch with the present situation of Russian prisoners of war in Germany, and having at its disposal, every means of studying on the spot the physical possibilities for concentration, embarkation, and transport, and every facility for dealing with these questions—

  • With the “Allied Maritime Transport Executive Council” so far as tonnage is concerned.
  • With the competent Authorities in so far as the use of railways is concerned.

The Inter-Allied Commission at Berlin, charged with the care of Russian prisoners of war, transformed into an International Commission of Control by the addition of German Representatives and eventually of Representatives of all the other interested countries, will be in a position to provide most of the essential conditions required. It should, however, first of all be accredited to the Allied Maritime Transport Executive Council and to the Governments interested, and be given the necessary powers to deal with every question regarding the proposed transport with the means placed at their disposal by the Allied and Associated Governments.

[Page 501]

In view of these considerations the military and naval representatives are of opinion:—

That the Inter-Allied Commission at Berlin, charged with the repatriation of the Russian prisoners of war should be made into an International Commission by the addition of German Delegates; and eventually of Polish, Lithuanian and other Delegates, as may be considered necessary.
That this Commission should be directed to study, prepare and ensure, with the least possible delay, the repatriation of the Russian prisoners of war at present maintained at the cost of the Allies in Germany with this reservation, that they conform their action to the guiding principles of the Allied and Associated Governments (principles set forth above in paragraphs 2 & 3).
That on its constitution, this International Commission should be accredited by the Allied and Associated Powers to the interested Governments, as well as to the Allied Maritime Transport Executive Council at London.

Military Representative, French Section, Supreme War Council. Major-General, Military Representative, British Section, Supreme War Council. Military Representative, Italian Section, Supreme War Council. Military Representative, American Section, Supreme War Council.
Naval Representative. Naval Representative. Naval Representative. Naval Representative.

Given at Versailles on the 25th July, 1919.

Certified to be a true copy of the original document.

T. F. Powell
, Captain.
Secretary, British Section
Supreme War Council

Versailles, 25 July, 1919.

Appendix “G” to HD–22

[Note From the British Representative on the Commission on Baltic Affairs (Howard) to the Secretary-General (Dutasta)]

Your Excellency: The attention of the Commission on Baltic Affairs has been drawn to the question of the entrances to the Baltic which has not, so for as the Commission is aware, hitherto been considered by the Allied arid Associated Powers. A Memorandum on the subject, prepared by the British Delegation as a basis of discussion, is enclosed in order to make clear the nature of the points involved.

The Commission are uncertain whether the subject is one which properly enters within the competence of the Commission, but as it [Page 502] does not appear to have been dealt with so far by any other Commission, and is obviously a matter of considerable importance, I am desired by the Commission on Baltic Affairs to enquire whether, in the view of the Council of Foreign Ministers, the Commission should take this question into consideration in consultation with the naval experts, and submit recommendations on the subject.

I have [etc.]

Esme Howard

The Entrances to the Baltic

1. (a) By a Treaty of 14th March 1857,26 Denmark undertook to abstain from levying dues on vessels passing through the Belts and Sounds, but this extends to mercantile vessels alone, and the treaty has little, if any, bearing on the position of warships.

It appears that there is a traditional general right of transit through the Belts and Sounds for men-of-war. Denmark and Sweden recognise this as they have in practice abstained when neutral from closing the passage of the sound to belligerent men-of-war. There is, however, no international written instrument embodying this right of passage.

(b) The geographical position of Germany enables her to control the passage of the Little Belt, and to a lesser extent the Great Belt.

Note. It is to avoid this that the Peace Terms to Germany include the dismantling of all German fortifications commanding the Little Belts and also those on the east coast of Schleswig-Holstein (Art. 195, Treaty of Peace with Germany—Naval Clauses).

(c) It is desirable that a Treaty should be arranged whereby the countries adjoining should undertake, when neutral, to keep open within their respective jurisdictions all the Belts and Channels connecting the North Sea and Baltic south of lat. 58° N. and west of long. 16° E. of Greenwich for passage of all merchant ships and warships, belligerent or otherwise, and further that a safe channel through these passages be guaranteed for all commercial traffic.

2. It is considered that the entrance to the Gulf of Bothnia should be considered at the same time as the above, i. e.

The fortifications of the Aland Islands should be dismantled and there should be a prohibition against their re-erection.
The Gulf of Bothnia should be declared an open sea, and the channels leading from the Baltic to the Gulf of Bothnia should be kept open, in time of peace or when the adjoining countries are neutral, for the passage of all merchant vessels and warships, whether belligerent or otherwise.

[Page 503]

Appendix H to HD–22


The Roumanian Delegation to the Peace Conference.

[To] the Secretary General of the Economic Commission.

Mr. Secretary-General: On July 30th, last, Mr. Herbette28 telephoned to the Roumanian delegation requesting that it communicate urgently to the Secretariat of the Economic Commission and to the Drafting Committee inquiring whether the words “as well as with Roumania” which were suppressed, at our request in the Sub-Commission on Treaties, in article 27 of the draft of economic clauses with Bulgaria (corresponding to article 292 of the treaty with Germany) should remain suppressed or be reintroduced in order to put this text in accord with the financial clauses concerning Bulgaria as they were modified on July 29 last.

In our letter of July 31, we requested the retention of the words “as well as with Roumania,” having in view only the Treaty of Bucharest of 1918,29 which we have always considered as null and of no effect. But we made this reply without having under our eyes the definitive text of the economic clauses with Bulgaria, which, moreover, we are not yet acquainted with even today.

In order to avoid all confusion, we propose the following draft of the article in question:

“Bulgaria recognizes as being and remaining abrogated all the treaties, conventions, or agreements that she has concluded with Russia or with any other state or government whose territory previously constituted a part of Russia before the 1st of August, 1914, or since that date up until the coming into force of the present treaty, as well as the Treaty of Bucharest and all the conventions annexed to this treaty that she concluded with Roumania in 1918.

or: as well as with Roumania since the date of August 15, 1916.”

The Delegation of Roumania never intended and does not intend to renounce the Treaty of Peace of Bucharest concluded with Bulgaria in 1913.30

Kindly accept [etc.]

The Delegate of the Roumanian Government on the Economic Commission of the Peace Conference:
  1. General Wilhelm Boehm, Hungarian Minister at Vienna; Hungarian People’s Commissar for War and commander in chief of the Hungarian Red Army, March–July, 1919.
  2. Julius Peidl, Hungarian Socialist leader; Minister of Foreign Affairs in the Hungarian Republic, January 18–March 21, 1919.
  3. Prince Don Felice Borghese, Italian representative at Vienna.
  4. Col. Sir Thomas A. Cunninghame, chief of the British Military Mission at Vienna.
  5. Ante, p. 310.
  6. vol. vi, p. 399.
  7. Ante, p. 317.
  8. Gen. Adolphe Guillaumat, commander in chief of the Allied Armies in the East, December 1917 to June 1918.
  9. Brig. Gen. Alexander W. F. Baird, chief of the British Military Mission to Bulgaria.
  10. Of the French Army, president of the Inter-Allied Military Control Commission.
  11. Maj. Gen. Neill Malcolm, of the British Army, president of the Inter-Allied Commission for the Repatriation of Russian Prisoners of War.
  12. Appendix B to HD–11, p. 230.
  13. Translation from the French supplied by the editors.
  14. The translation is that found under Paris Peace Conf. 185.003/18; revised by the editors.
  15. Supra.
  16. The military convention between the Allies and Hungary, signed November 13, 1918, is printed in vol. ii, p. 183.
  17. Appendices V (A) and V (B) to CF–65, vol. vi, pp. 411 and 412.
  18. Translation from the French supplied by the editors.
  19. Translation from the French supplied by the editors.
  20. vol. ii, p. 241.
  21. August von Mackensen, commander of the German-Bulgarian Army in the Balkans, 1917–1918.
  22. Letter 15.485/2M/ of May 19. [Footnote in the original.]
  23. 1515 cannon, 659,000 rifles, 2,378 machine guns, 382 million cartridges, 3½ million shells. [Footnote in the original.]
  24. The number of firing mechanisms removed from the weapons amounted to: l/20th of the rifles, 1/10th of the machine guns, 1/6th of the cannon. [Footnote in the original.]
  25. Letter No. 16.099/2M. of July 1. [Footnote in the original.]
  26. The translation is that found under Paris Peace Conf. 185.116401/1.
  27. The translation is that found under Paris Peace Conf. 185.116401/1.
  28. HD–11, minute 6, p. 208.
  29. Note: In this connection consideration should be given to the complete revictualling of any such reinforcement, or new organisations, as might be formed, and the dispatch of Missions to regulate their absorption. This would have to be provided by the Allied and Associated Powers. [Footnote in the original.]
  30. British and Foreign State Papers, vol. xlvii, p. 24.
  31. Translation from the French supplied by the editors.
  32. Maurice Herbette, French representative, Section on Economic Treaties, Economic Commission.
  33. Foreign Relations, 1918, supp. 1, vol. i, p. 771.
  34. British and Foreign State Papers, vol. cvii, p. 658.