The Ambassador in Germany (Dodd) to the Secretary of State
[Received March 18—3:52 p.m.]
50. Considerable self-satisfied feeling but no great enthusiasm following promulgation general military service law as “Germany has regained her honor and sovereignty” and belief is position in forthcoming peace discussions with Simon far better. Armaments admission inevitable and declaration for naval defence hitherto not discussed.
Reliable sources estimate army strength to be between 8 and 14 thousand men per division, that total strength will approximate prewar status, but that it will probably comprise small regular army and large militia.
Rumors of troop plans formulated prior to recent French and British action but official circles believe it has clarified atmosphere for peace discussions.
Provision for immediate service action deleted in later announcement, thus leaving way open for organization action until after Simon visit and for making movements officially denied.[Page 301]
It is understood that French, British, Italian, and Polish Ambassadors stated to Foreign Minister they would protest violation of the treaty.