740.00119 European War 1939/1447

The British Embassy to the Department of State


The aide-mémoire dated April 6th left by Sir Ronald Campbell17 with Mr. Dunn18 on April 7th described the attitude of His Majesty’s Government towards peace feelers put forward by the minor German satellites in Europe.

[Page 491]

Three further approaches have been made to His Majesty’s Government in the past few days.

His Majesty’s Minister at Berne19 has reported that the Hungarian Minister in Vichy has attempted through the Brazilian Minister to get into touch with the United States Minister20 and himself. Mr. Norton and his United States colleague declined to have anything to do with the matter. It is, however, understood that the United States Minister has reported to his Government. Mr. Norton’s attitude has been approved and he has been instructed, in the event of further approaches being made, to continue for the present to take the same line.

His Majesty’s Minister at Berne has also reported that Monsieur de Barcza, who until 1941 was Hungarian Minister in London, is about to visit Switzerland. Mr. Norton is being instructed that he should not himself have any dealings with him but that other arrangements are being made to find out discreetly what if anything he may have to say.

His Majesty’s Ambassador at Ankara has reported that his Netherlands colleague has received a visit from a Hungarian, Charles Schrecker, who stated that he had been asked by a number of leading Hungarians, from Conservatives to Socialists, to explain to His Majesty’s Government Hungary’s past and present position and his views as to the future and to obtain information as regards the views of His Majesty’s Government. The Netherlands Minister understood that Schrecker’s visit had been made with the knowledge of the Hungarian Prime Minister21 and that he had a letter which he wished to deliver to His Majesty’s Government. His Majesty’s Ambassador is being instructed that he should not himself enter into contact with Schrecker but that arrangements are being made through other channels to find out what he may have to say.

The above information is being communicated to the Soviet Government.

In view of these further developments, His Majesty’s Government would appreciate receiving the early comments of the United States Government upon the proposals contained in the aide-mémoire of April 6th.

  1. British Minister.
  2. James C. Dunn, Political Adviser and member of the Committee on Political Planning.
  3. Clifford J. Norton.
  4. The United States Minister, Leland Harrison, reported this approach in telegram No. 2319 from Bern, April 13, 1 p.m. (864.00/1060).
  5. Miklos Kállay de Nagykálló.