740.0011 European War 1939/8750: Telegram

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

50. I found the Minister of Foreign Affairs unperturbed as usual this morning although quite plainly stating his opinion that the German occupation of Bulgaria28 brings to the very frontiers of Turkey a situation for the creation of which there can be no purpose except as it is directed against her as well as against Greece and Yugoslavia; he assumed that the Germans must intend either by force or by menaces to make Turkey subservient to their designs whether those be confined to controlling the Straits or involve more far-reaching objectives such as the Iraq oil fields or India or the Suez Canal. He repeated that Turkey would in any case resist to the utmost any such attempt.

He acknowledged surprise that the Bulgarian Government had adhered to the Axis and therewith consented to an immediate occupation; he had expected that the Bulgarians would yield under protest to the German demands only after perhaps another month of real or feigned opposition. To my question whether this Government regarded that adherence as compatible with the recent joint declaration with Bulgaria he unequivocally stated the opinion that it was a gross violation of that declaration as well as of international law.
Beyond expressing his Government’s entire satisfaction with their results he avoided all discussion of the recent conversations with the British.
  1. Beginning March 1; for correspondence on this subject, see vol. i, pp. 294 ff., passim.