740.0011 European War 1939/8415: Telegram

The Ambassador in Turkey (MacMurray) to the Secretary of State

31. For the Secretary and Under Secretary.

I now learn that almost simultaneously with my sending my telegram No. 30 yesterday8 the Ministry for Foreign Affairs, to its great surprise, received word that the Bulgarian Government would accept a formula which the Turkish Government had submitted. On that basis an agreement is to be signed tomorrow and published probably the following day which provides, subject to the stipulation that it is without prejudice to the contractual obligations of the several parties, for: (a) mutual nonaggression; (b) cultivation of neighborly relations; (c) intensification of commercial exchanges; and (d) restraint (by implication) upon the tone of the press.
Although I understand the Turks consider that the text fully safeguards their position under the Balkan Entente Agreement9 and their treaty of alliance with Great Britain10 there would seem to be reason to apprehend that enemy propaganda may at least plausibly misrepresent Turkey’s participation in such an agreement as an acquiescence in the fait accompli of German military penetration of Bulgaria and even in the purposes thereof.
  1. Not printed.
  2. Signed at Athens, February 9, 1934, by Greece, Rumania, Turkey, and Yugoslavia; League of Nations Treaty Series, vol. cliii, p. 153.
  3. Signed May 12, 1939; Parliamentary Debates, House of Commons, 5th series, vol. 347, col. 952.