871.00/7–2445: Telegram

No. 814
The Acting Representative in Rumania (Melbourne) to the Acting Secretary of State1
secret

498. Yesterday evening in an interview requested by Mr. Julius Maniu he stated that to demonstrate its existence the political opposition last week had engaged in small scale activities that also were needed for party morale (my 491 July 222). (Repeated Moscow as 140) These activities had been limited in order not to impede considered decisions upon Rumania at the Potsdam Conference, since the opposition wished to avoid what it considered to be the unhappy example of Poland in taking unilateral action.

Despite what Maniu maintained to be intimidating or provocative tactics by the NDF (National Democratic Front) and Soviet officials who sought to disrupt party meetings the National Peasants were remaining calm as they awaited results at Potsdam which they expected would implement the Yalta Declaration.3

Maniu stated he had counseled his party that US and Great Britain if they wished could secure Soviet acquiescence to a democratic interpretation of Yalta. He remarked that he considered such an act necessary for America to translate its [e]nunciated principles into acts or have its influence irreparably damaged in this area.

In considering measures to implement the Yalta Declaration Maniu expressed his belief in the impossibility of adequate tripartite ACC (Allied Control Commission) supervision of national elections. He expressed his preference for a non-political technician’s government to conduct the elections or, failing this, a democratic coalition government truly representative of party political strength in Rumania. He considered the National Peasants could confidently expect an overwhelming electoral majority with free elections and suggested in a coalition government that the party be given the War, Interior, and Propaganda Ministries since it would be to its interest to conduct the elections in an unbiased manner with an inevitable large National Peasant majority emerging with the responsibility of government.

If the Groza Government is retained or mere minor changes decided at Potsdam Maniu significantly stated that his party will organize energetic country wide opposition, including demonstrations, agains[t] the NDF Government. In measured words he said that for such intensified action he was certain of support from the dissatisfied [Page 715]Rumanian Peasants who would unite with townspeople to defend country’s democratic traditions.

Maniu again repeated his fundamental premise that he is not anti-Russian since he views events in light of political forces rather than emotionally. He flatly said country would be foolish to adopt an opposition course to Soviet Union but that his party could never approve of an incompetent Communist minority governing Rumania.

Melbourne
  1. The gist of this message was included in telegram No. 135 of July 26 from Grew to Byrnes (file No. 800.00 Summaries/7–2645).
  2. Document No. 806.
  3. On liberated Europe. See document No. 1417, section v.