740.00119 E.A.C./10–1644

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom (Winant) to the Secretary of State

No. 18638

Sir: With reference to previous despatches transmitting replies from various interested Allied Governments54 to the letter of July 25, 1944, from the Chairman of the European Advisory Commission, I have the honor to submit two reports on the views of the above mentioned Allied Governments which were prepared by a Committee of Experts of the three Delegations.

It will be noted that the reports cover only certain aspects of the surrender of Germany. They do not cover subjects which the Commission plans to incorporate in general orders and directives.

In view of the unwillingness of the Soviet Delegation to examine the reply submitted by the Polish Government, a separate report has been prepared by the United States and British Delegations with respect to the Polish memorandum.55

Respectfully yours,

For the Ambassador:
E. Allan Lightner, Jr.

Secretary, U.S. Delegation European Advisory Commission
[Enclosure 1]

Report by the Committee of Experts of the European Advisory Commission


Terms of Surrender to be imposed upon Germany and Machinery for their enforcement

Views of the European Allies

1. Replies to the Chairman’s letter of 25th July, 1944, (see the third Annex to the minutes of the 7th meeting of the Commission held on that date) have been received from the Governments of [Page 69] Belgium, Czechoslovakia, Greece, Luxembourg, Netherlands, Norway and Poland.* The French Committee of National Liberation has asked to participate in discussion on surrender terms for Germany,56 but has not submitted any detailed comments in writing. The Yugoslav Government has not replied.

2. This report is confined to an examination of the replies of the various Allied Governments as they relate to:—

the Instrument of Unconditional Surrender;
the Occupation of Germany;
Allied Control Machinery in Germany;
Further consultation with the Allied Governments or association between them and the European Advisory Commission.

3. The Report covers only the more immediate and important points bearing on the above subjects, and it does not, in general, take account of proposals made on subjects which, according to the principles on which the European Advisory Commission has so far proceeded, would be more properly dealt with in General or Special Orders. Reference is, however, made to a few proposals of the Allied Governments which appear to be new or exceptional.

4. In general, it may be said that most of the replies are mainly concerned with dealing in considerable detail with subjects which cannot be fully dealt with in the Instrument of Unconditional Surrender, but which will have to be settled at a later stage. The Belgian, Greek, Luxemburg and Netherlands Governments express the view that the actual Instrument of Surrender should be brief and confined to military requirements, though each of them make certain proposals for the inclusion in the Instrument of matters of other kinds. The Czech, Norwegian and Polish Governments appear to think that the Instrument of Surrender itself should be longer and more elaborate and should deal in detail with many political and economic questions as well as military ones.

5. The Instrument of Unconditional Surrender would appear, broadly speaking, to cover the desiderata of the Allied Governments as far as military terms are concerned.

6. The Allied Governments assume that the surrender of Germany will be unconditional and that the terms will therefore be imposed on Germany without giving the Germans an opportunity to discuss them. They assume that Germany will be occupied by the victors. Most of the Governments definitely wish to participate in the occupation of Germany; one would be willing to do so if requested.

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7. All the Governments assume that Germany will be controlled by a central inter-Allied body and they apparently expect to be represented on that body. They do not specifically mention the division of Germany into zones of occupation.

belgium, luxemburg and netherlands

(Note: These three Governments have sent to the European Advisory Commission replies which, except for a very few points, are identical. Unless otherwise indicated, the views summarised below are common to all three Governments.)

Instrument of Surrender

8. The three Governments “refrain from making specific proposals with regard to general provisions of a military nature …57 It is assumed that such general provisions of a military nature as will be necessary will be drawn up by the Allied High Command in such manner that the general interests of all the Allies … will be duly taken into account.… If the first protocol of surrender were confined to such military clauses as need immediate attention, coupled with an injunction to accept and carry out such further terms as will subsequently be made known to Germany, this procedure would be fully endorsed by” the three Governments … “The question as to which points should be imposed in the first instance would appear to be a matter of expediency, the answer to which will be largely determined by military and political considerations of the moment. It should be made quite clear to Germany from the beginning that any time supplementary terms of surrender may be imposed on her.”

9. The three Governments believe the Instrument of Surrender “should be signed preferably on German territory, and not only by a plenipotentiary of the responsible German authority of the moment, but also by a plenipotentiary of each of the three branches of the Wehrmacht (army, navy and air force).”

10. In the event of their territory not being evacuated by Germany at the moment of her capitulation, the three Governments propose detailed provisions, for embodiment in the Instrument of Surrender, to regulate the evacuation by German forces of their territory and the internment of those who remain.

11. The Belgian Government suggests that the Surrender Instrument should contain provisions whereby Germany would abrogate all annexations of Belgian territory and would immediately release the King.

Occupation of Germany.

12. The three Governments “fully realise the dangers and inconveniences inherent for the Allies in the complete occupation of Germany [Page 71] for a long time. Also, there would be no advantage to the Allies in wounding Germany’s pride, unnecessarily. The least humiliating and the most practical form of compulsion of Germany would perhaps be no more occupation of key-points than is necessary, coupled with unambiguous threat of suitable coercive measures … in case of infraction of the terms of surrender.”

13. It is improbable that the Netherlands would be able in the beginning to muster a contingent to participate in the occupation. “All available resources will be mobilised for the war against Japan. At a later stage, however, the Netherlands Government would reserve the right to furnish a contingent, on the theory that such occupation as there will be should be demonstrably Allied occupation.”

14. The Belgian and Luxemburg Governments attach importance to the participation by Belgium and Luxemburg in the occupation of Germany, in accordance with the means available to them.

Allied Control Machinery in Germany.

15. “There should be a permanent Central Allied Commission for the enforcement of the Terms of Surrender, which would be the Supreme Authority, under the direction of the Allied Governments, to ensure the fulfilment of the terms. Adequate representation should be guaranteed to all States with a direct interest in the fulfilment of the terms, including, in particular, the ex-occupied countries.”

16. Special sub-committees should be established under the exclusive jurisdiction of the Central Commission to deal with disarmament; German industry; press, radio and films; postal censorship; reparation; restitution of looted property; control of German imports and exports; apprehension of German foreign assets; control of German financial and monetary policy and fixation of the rate of exchange of the German mark; and such other matters as would prove to be desirable. Matters of general importance which would not be entrusted to a separate sub-committee should be dealt with by the Secretariat of the main Commission under the direction of the latter.

Future Consultation and Association With the European Advisory Commission.

17. The three Governments reserve the right to submit further observations as occasion and experience may require. Whenever their special interests are concerned, they trust that they will be duly consulted.

18. The experts of the three Governments and the three Foreign Ministers are at the disposal of the European Advisory Commission to give such explanations of their memoranda as the Commission may require.

19. The three Governments would be glad to learn the opinion of the European Advisory Commission with regard to their memoranda.

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20. The three Governments hope the European Advisory Commission will find it possible to have a discussion with their representative or representatives on these subjects before a final draft for the Instrument of Surrender is submitted to the Governments represented on the Commission.


Instrument of Surrender.

21. The Czechoslovak Government suggests that the Surrender Terms should contain many subjects other than military, including several matters of particular interest to Czechoslovakia, for example:—

nullification of certain treaties;
assertion of Czechoslovak sovereignty over its 1937 territory;
a declaration that a state of war has existed between Czechoslovakia and Germany since 17th September, 1938;
provisions for the transfer of German and Hungarian populations;
renewal of international control of the Elbe, Oder and Danube rivers;
“free harbor” privileges in Hamburg and Stettin.

Occupation of Germany.

22. “Should it be decided that other States besides Great Britain, the Soviet Union, the United States of America and France should participate in the occupation of enemy States in Europe, Czechoslovakia would ask to be allowed to take part in the occupation of Germany in the sectors of the Northern and Western frontiers of Czechoslovakia (and in that of Hungary, in the sectors on the Southern frontiers of Czechoslovakia).”

Allied Control Machinery in Germany.

23. The Czechoslovak Government mentions that an “Armistice Commission” will interpret the armistice clauses and carry out sanctions in case of infringement. It does not indicate the composition of such Commission.

Future Consultation and Association With the European Advisory Commission.

24. The Czechoslovak Foreign Minister will be able to provide any explanation or supplementary particulars required. A special memorandum on the transferring of Germans from Czechoslovakia will be submitted later.


Instrument of Surrender.

25. The Greek Government “advocate the principle of a protocol embodying terms of surrender limited exclusively to conditions of a military nature, such conditions to impose upon the German authorities [Page 73] a clear obligation to comply with the orders to be issued by the Allies.”

26. The reply from the Greek Government proceeds to make detailed suggestions on the subjects of evacuation of occupied territories; delivery of war material, stocks and supplies; delivery of warships and merchant vessels; repatriation of prisoners of war, hostages, internees and displaced persons; restitution; reparation; and war criminals. The Greek Government draw attention to the special claims of Greece for compensation for damage done by the Germans. They suggest that certain industrial installations should be transplanted from Germany to Greece to make good Greek losses; that many types of raw materials and commodities in Germany should be ear-marked for the rebuilding of districts in Greece destroyed by the Germans; that 200 locomotives, 500 railway coaches, 3,000 railway wagons, 2,000 motor cars and 3,000 motor lorries shall be delivered by Germany to Greece.

Occupation of Germany.

27. “The Royal Hellenic Government would wish to have a part in the occupation of Germany, and are prepared to furnish the necessary forces to this end.”

Allied Control Machinery in Germany.

28. “These rules and regulations [for implementing general obligations imposed in the Instrument of Surrender]58 should emanate from a permanent Inter-Allied Armistice Commission … which would control all the organs and the machinery required for the enforcement of the said rules and regulations. The Royal Hellenic Government would wish to be represented on this Commission.”

Future Consultation and Association With the European Advisory Commission.

29. “The Royal Hellenic Government will appreciate it if the European Advisory Commission would keep them informed of any provisions relating to matters of interest to Greece that are envisaged by it, so that they may in due time submit their views thereon.”

30. The Greek Government say that they are preparing a fuller and more detailed report to be addressed to the European Advisory Commission at a later date.


Instrument of Surrender.

31. The Norwegian Government assumes “that the supreme Allied military authorities will draw up the general military provisions required, taking into account the common interests of all the Allies.”

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32. The Norwegian Government does not make any statement to the effect that the Instrument of Surrender should be confined to military questions only; but it does say: “It should be made clear to Germany that supplementary terms to those laid down in connection with the actual surrender may subsequently be imposed upon her at any time.”

33. “Besides the general conditions which are to be imposed upon Germany … it will, in the opinion of the Norwegian Government, be necessary to impose special terms on the Germans in those occupied countries which have not been evacuated at the time of Germany’s surrender.” The Norwegian Government accordingly submit a text of provisions for special terms of surrender for Germans in Norway, amounting to fourteen articles. The first of these reads: “The terms shall be notified to the Germans and their subordinates in Norway by two Allied plenipotentiaries, one of whom shall be appointed by the Norwegian Government.” The remaining thirteen articles provide detailed regulations for the control and disarmament of German forces and German-controlled organisations in Norway.

34. The Norwegian Government lay down a number of commercial, economic and political provisions which they say should be included in the general terms of surrender. In particular, they are specially concerned with German shipping and ship-building; they suggest that Germany should be forbidden to build whaling and sealing vessels, or to indulge in whaling and sealing; that the entire German Merchant fleet should be confiscated for the benefit of the Allies (subject to a possible exception for coastal shipping); that Germany should be obliged to receive on her territory persons who have become stateless as a consequence of an Allied country having deprived them of their citizenship by reason of breach of allegiance to that country; and that the Instrument of Surrender should include articles on the subject of war criminals.

Occupation of Germany.

35. The Norwegian Government “presume that it will be necessary to secure an effective military occupation of Germany after her surrender. Germany must be made to pay the cost of this occupation. Norway is willing to participate in the occupation with contingents corresponding to the country’s military capacity as regards manpower and war material, provided that the Norwegian Government is not thereby prevented from safeguarding vital national interests, and that the participation does not involve forces which are required for the maintenance of order in Norway or for the conduct of war.”

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Allied Control Machinery in Germany.

36. “A Central Commission should be established under the direction of the Allied Governments in order to secure the enforcement of the terms of surrender. The countries which have suffered German occupation have a special interest in the solution of this question and the Norwegian Government therefore assume that these countries will be represented on such a Commission.”

37. “The occupation forces in a particular region of Germany should not issue orders or regulations except of local interest without the express approval of the Central Commission.”

Future Consultation and Association With the European Advisory Commission.

38. The Norwegian Government “would appreciate being given an opportunity to make supplementary proposals, or amendments, at a later date as they cannot claim to have stated in full all Norwegian wishes in this respect.”

39. The Norwegian Government “further assume that, when the special interests of any particular country are directly or indirectly concerned, the Governments of such countries will be consulted.”

40. The organisation of the Central Commission and of its subordinate organs and the definition of their powers must, in the opinion of the Norwegian Government, form the object of special discussions between the European Advisory Commission and the Governments of the countries having suffered occupation.

41. The Norwegian Foreign Minister states that he is personally at the disposal of the Commission for such explanations as they may wish him to give them as regards the various points raised in his Government’s reply.

[Enclosure 2]

Report by the Experts of the United Kingdom and United States Delegations


Terms of Surrender to be imposed upon Germany and Machinery for their enforcement

Views of the Polish Government

Instrument of Surrender.

1. The Polish Government assume that, “in centra-distinction to a purely military armistice of the kind known in the pat, the terms of surrender at present under consideration will contain political, territorial [Page 76] and economic clauses which will become the basis of the Peace Treaty.”

2. “On this assumption, the Polish Government consider it to be of fundamental importance that already in the terms of capitulation Germany should renounce all rights to territories which are to be detached from her and which were within the frontiers of the Reich before the Nazi annexations, i.e. on 1st January, 1933. The Polish Government are vitally interested that Germany should renounce her claim to the free city of Danzig and her sovereignty over the territories of East Prussia, Oppeln Silesia with adequate extensions, and such territories between the River Oder and the Polish-German frontier of 1st September, 1939 which are to be acquired by Poland in connexion with the general settlement of the frontiers of Poland.”

3. “The articles of capitulation should stipulate for Allied control and administration of the Kiel Canal …59 The Polish Government are of the opinion that Poland, as Germany’s neighbour, with a Baltic coast, should be assured of participation in such arrangements. The Polish Government intend to submit at a later date more detailed observations on questions relating to the Western Baltic.”

4. “The Polish Government attach considerable importance to the obligation which Germany will assume by the terms of capitulation of receiving on her territory all persons of German extraction who will be expatriated from their territories—including the territories which Germany will lose as a result of this war—by the United Nations …”

5. The Polish Government make suggestions for inclusion in the Instrument of Surrender of provisions for disarmament; demilitarisation; reorganisation of German Police; transfer or destruction of German war industry; diminution of German raw material resources; complete abolition and prohibition of certain industries not exclusively devoted to war production; control of German finance; control of German trade; restitution; reparation; and war criminals.

6. “The Polish Government expect … that they will be invited to sign the articles of capitulation together with all the interested Allied Governments.”

Occupation of Germany.

7. “The Polish Government consider the occupation of the entire territory left to Germany as indispensable. Poland being vitally interested in the enforcement upon Germany of the whole of the armistice terms, the Polish Government attach the greatest importance to the participation of Polish troops in the occupation of Germany’s eastern provinces adjacent to the future Polish frontiers.”

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Allied Control Machinery in Germany.

8. “The Polish Government expect that they will be fully represented on the Allied organs charged with the execution of the capitulation.”

Future Consultation and Association With the European Advisory Commission.

9. “The Polish Government trust that, when the time comes, they will have an opportunity to discuss with the European Advisory Commission or with the three Governments represented on it, the terms of Germany’s surrender proposed by this Commission. They will then present their observations in greater detail together with their full justification.”

  1. None printed.
  2. Letter and memorandum from the Polish Government dated September 6, transmitted to the Department in despatch 17985, September 12, from London; none printed.
  3. The experts of the Soviet Delegation declined to consider the reply of the Polish Government in London. [Footnote in the original.]
  4. See letter of August 22, 1944, from the Chargé of the Delegation of the French Committee of National Liberation in London to the American Ambassador in the United Kingdom, p. 86.
  5. Omissions throughout this document indicated in the original report.
  6. Brackets appear in the original.
  7. Omissions throughout this document indicated in the original report.