Frankfurt USPolAd Files: Telegram

No. 431
The Chief of Staff, United States Army (Marshall) to the Deputy Military Governor, United States Zone in Germany (Clay)
top secret
operational priority

From AGWar signed WarCOS to CG USFET Main for Clay, passed to US Group CC for action, ref No W–29913.

Interim commitment to provide food and coal for Berlin outlined your S–96126 dated 9 July1 causes concern here. Desirability of obtaining agreement for tripartite control and government of Berlin is appreciated but it is important that attainment of such agreement should not prejudice our basic principles and objectives in Germany.
Proposed interim agreement raises following questions which are disturbing to us as possibly prejudicing our basic position in Germany:
The State Department advises that this Government cannot accept Soviet position that Silesia has been turned over to Poland. Tripartite agreement for occupation of Germany was based on 1937 German boundaries which place Silesia in Soviet occupation zone. No interim agreement should be made which implicitly or impliedly accepts the view that Soviets may unilaterally and without consultation or agreement with the other occupying powers dispose of segments of the Soviet zone. Additional detail on this point has been communicated to Murphy by State Department.2
Although this Government’s desire and objective is that Germany, for the purposes of the occupation must be treated as an entity it is recognized that as a practical matter, if agreement to entity theory is not reached, each occupying power will be obliged to supply its own zone. Under such circumstances the Soviets would be obliged to provide coal for the Soviet zone in Berlin. The fact that payment for supplies would be necessary would not relieve the Soviet obligation to supply coal for the Soviet zone. United States and United Kingdom would have to purchase supplies, not available in Germany, which are required in their respective zones. In light of these facts and your statement that Soviet demand is that the United States and United Kingdom should accept proportionate responsibility for bringing in coal for Berlin it is believed that even in negotiating an interim agreement you are justified in pressing the Soviets to furnish their due proportion of Berlin’s coal.
Despite serious domestic shortages increasing pressure is being brought on the United States to export coal for liberated Europe. The amount of such export of necessity has definite limits and will be inadequate to meet the admitted minimum needs in such countries as France, Italy, Norway, and Denmark. The President has [Page 636] expressed the view that meeting liberated Europe’s minimum coal need to the extent possible from the Ruhr and Saar should have highest priority. In this situation an undertaking to provide approximately 2,000 tons per annum [day] of Ruhr coal to Berlin in face of Soviet refusal to make equitable provision from Eastern Germany would cause serious difficulty for this Government because any action which would inequitably reduce supply of German coal for liberated Europe would increase demand for export from the United States with resulting serious repercussions here.
In setting up War Department budget for imports to Germany estimates furnished to Congress were based on full use of indigenous resources to support the Berlin area.
No agreement has been reached as to the method by which imports for United Kingdom and French occupation zones from the United States will be financed.
No interim agreement should compromise the ultimate position of the United States with respect to the points above enumerated. It is assumed from your suggestion that the proposed agreement is an interim measure until Allied Control machinery has had further opportunity to investigate and that the United States will remain free to assert its position on any points and to terminate the interim arrangement at any time vis[-à-vis?] the United Kingdom, USSR, or French.
It is recognized that you may be influenced by factors not known here. Therefore will concur in such decision as you may make in light of foregoing analysis either to enter into appropriate interim arrangement with proper reservations or to continue negotiations pending opportunity to consult with United States representatives who have departed for conference. Desire that you keep War Department advised and that full information be furnished to appropriate United States representatives at conference.
This reply has been agreed [to?] by representatives of the State and War Departments. State Department will advise Murphy.