Memorandum by Mr. Frederick T. Merrill, of the Division of Southern European Affairs, to Mr. Cloyce K. Huston, of the Same Division6

It seems to me that Archduke Otto and Eckhardt are exaggerating (purposely or unconsciously) the present strength and cohesion of the so-called anti-Nazi democratic coalition of opposition parties.7

In A (1) I believe the memorandum mentioned was presented by Peyer8 and was some forty pages long. We have no information as to who signed it and I would have reservations that Bethlen and Seredy’s signatures could have been obtained on a document drawn up by a Social Democrat. Although the Regent did react favorably, as I remember it, he discussed it mostly with Peyer and not with a [Page 850] member of the Smallholders’ Party, which of course still recognizes Eckhardt as its leader.

In (2) I also have reservations that any real coalition has yet been formed. The coalition appears to be a popular frontist movement particularly among the intellectual opposition. Evidence from OSS sources indicates that some elements among the opposition could never work together or “take over power in perfect order.” Many Social Democrats apparently consider the majority of Smallholders reactionary.

In (3) the Otto memorandum seems to indicate that it was the action of the opposition advocating urgent renewal of friendly relations with Yugoslavia that brought about the indictment of the Hungarian officers guilty of the Serb massacres. Obviously the opposition played a part but I believe the action against these officers is all a part of the Kallay Government’s efforts to pave the way for postwar.

  1. Copy transmitted to Maj. Gen. Clayton Bissell by Mr. Dunn with covering memorandum of March 15.
  2. See memorandum supra.
  3. Charles (Karolyi) Peyer, leader of the Hungarian Social Democratic Party.