740.00119 Control (Rumania)/7–1545: Telegram

No. 321
The Acting Representative in Rumania (Melbourne) to the Acting Secretary of State 1
us urgent

471. General Schuyler is transmitting two messages Nrs. M–12262 and 1227,3 July 14 expressing his views upon the minimum needed administrative revisions in the execution of the armistice convention as it affects the work and operations of his military representation.

[Page 419]

One great political and cultural weapon now unilaterally in the hands of Soviet officials is the censorship control specified by Armistice Article 16, With the end of the war it would appear the logic of a tripartite censorship control can no longer be deferred through the argument of Soviet military considerations. Therefore, it is suggested that, while the armistice lasts and the Soviet authorities refuse to permit freedom of publication in the American sense, the American Govt should have the right to assist in determining what Rumanians read and see.

As a basic requirement pending establishment of a free press and to avoid Soviet and NDF evasion tactics through newsprint controls and other administrative acts the suggestion is advanced that the American representation should have the same right as the Russians to stop any articles publications films or radio broadcasts that it consider objectionable. Thus, for example, instead of the present violently one sided press daily pillorying democratic friends of the United States there would be a colorless press until it is possible for it to be free.

A second consideration under Article 16 would make it impossible for the Rumanian Govt unilaterally to decide whether an American publication or film can be printed or sent in [sic] Rumania. The Rumanian Govt, for example, has recently refused although not in writing to allow publication of Walter Lippmann’s “United States War Aims” which circumstances are being reported by despatch.4 It is suggested that the Rumanian Govt, if at first it refuses a unilateral approach and then is notified by the tripartite representation of the ACC that it approves of a particular publication or film, should unquestioningly comply and place no restrictions on newsprint allocations or distribution facilities.

The above suggestions would have the advantage of placing censorship responsibility on the ACC and avoid the present Soviet sponsored plan of its puppet NDF regime nominally bearing the responsibility for censorship actions.

  1. The gist of this message was included in telegram No. 43 of July 17 from Grew to Byrnes (file No. 800.00 Summaries/7–1745).
  2. Document No. 317.
  3. Document No. 318.
  4. Not printed.