740.0011 Moscow/10–1943

Policy To Be Applied in the Administration of Conquered Territory in Italy

Conference Document No. 16

(Joint Note by Mr. Hull and Mr. Eden)2

You were good enough to confirm to me on October 23rd the proposal of the Soviet Government,3 which you had described at the meeting of the Conference on October 22nd for a joint declaration on the policy to be applied in the administration of conquered Italian territory.

[Page 719]

In view of the joint responsibility of the United States and United Kingdom Governments for military operations and military government in Italy, Mr. Hull and I have thought it proper and convenient to agree together upon the following considered reply to the proposal transmitted by Your Excellency:—

The principles enunciated by the Soviet Government all derive from the basic principle which has from the outset inspired the policy and actions of the two Governments in regard to Italy, namely the extirpation of Fascism and all its evil influences and emanations.

Mr. Hull and I hope that the joint paper entitled “Policy and Administration in connexion with Military Operations in Italy,”4 which we gave the Soviet Delegation on October 23rd in accordance with their request at the meeting of October 22nd, will have shown that, although the administration of conquered Italian territory has hitherto necessarily been governed by military considerations, effect has already been given in large measure to the detailed proposals set out in the Soviet Government’s draft declaration.

In future, as military operations proceed, it will be possible to give full effect to the detailed proposals set out in the Soviet draft declaration. This is a matter which will naturally fall within the competence of the Advisory Council of Allied High Commissioners which it has been agreed to establish in Italy. But it is necessary to observe that so long as active military operations continue in Italy, it must be for the Commander-in-Chief to decide the timing for the introduction of certain of these proposals.

I would propose that the next step should be to refer to our Drafting Committee the Soviet Delegation’s draft and these observations, with instructions to produce an agreed draft text for a declaration to be published in the name of the three Governments.

(Yours sincerely)

Anthony Eden
  1. Parenthetical heading on the original, which is a copy of a note addressed by Mr. Eden to Foreign Commissar Molotov.
  2. Mr. Molotov transmitted the text of the Soviet proposal in regard to Italy (Conference Document No. 13, p. 714) to Mr. Hull under cover of a note dated October 23, not printed.
  3. Conference Document No. 15, supra.