Bohlen Collection

Page Minutes
top secret


Dumbarton Oaks.
The Dismemberment of Germany.
Creation of a Commission to Study the Procedure for the Dismemberment of Germany.
The Integration of France into the German Control Machinery on Condition that France were to Receive a Zone of Occupation.

1. Dumbarton Oaks.

Mr. Stettinius inquired at the outset whether there were any questions regarding Dumbarton Oaks which the American Delegation had failed to make clear at yesterday’s plenary session. He said that if so he was prepared to answer with his colleagues any questions which remained open or which needed to be expanded.

Mr. Molotov remarked that the World Security Organization had not been referred to the Foreign Secretaries for discussion. He continued that although he had a few questions to advance he was not prepared to go into this subject at the present time.

[Page 700]

Mr. Stettinius stated that he was always ready now or at a later date to discuss the matter. He added that he wished merely to make the offer to discuss the question; he personally had no new points to bring up.

2. The Dismemberment of Germany.

Mr. Molotov recalled that it had been agreed to limit the changes in Article 12 of the German surrender instrument2 to the addition of the words “and the dismemberment” after the word “demilitarization.” He suggested that a sub-committee consisting of British, American and Soviet representatives be appointed to work out the exact wording of Article 12.

It was decided to authorize Messrs. Vyshinski, Cadogan and Matthews to make a final redraft of Article 12 which would include the addition of the word “dismemberment” and to authorize a commission consisting of Messrs. Eden, Winant and Gusev to study the question of the procedure for the dismemberment of Germany.

3. Creation of a Commission to Study the Procedure for the Dismemberment of Germany.

Mr. Molotov suggested that such a commission be set up in London consisting of Messrs. Eden, Winant and Gusev.

Mr. Stettinius stated that he felt the creation of this commission was a most important matter. If this question were not referred to the EAC the prestige of that body would surely be diminished. He, therefore, thought that the question of taking away this work from the EAC should be carefully considered.

Mr. Eden pointed out that if the dismemberment of Germany were included in the EAC the French would participate in this work.

Mr. Stettinius stated that it was entirely agreeable to have these studies carried on in London and to appoint Mr. Winant as the American representative.

Mr. Molotov stated that the subject under discussion was the study of procedure for dismembering Germany and not the actual dismemberment or detail thereof. Therefore, it could be assigned to a special committee. Later, perhaps, it might be handed over to the EAC.

Mr. Eden remarked that he thought that the body handling this question should go further than merely studying questions of procedure. He stated that he wished to make a few remarks on the terms of reference of that body. On the assumption that Germany was to be broken up into individual states, that body, he believed, should examine when this separation should take place; should look into boundary questions and measures needed to insure the proper functioning [Page 701] and survival of the new states. What relations should be permitted between them and foreign powers should also be studied. He stated that it might be necessary to request that a report be drawn up on the practicability of the dismemberment of Germany. He also questioned whether the commission was to undertake the type of work referred to in the afore-mentioned terms of reference or merely to decide how this work was to be done.

Mr. Molotov stated that he did not believe that there was any need for a special commission at this stage and suggested that the question be studied through diplomatic channels in London. He expressed doubt that the foreign secretaries had received any directive to form an actual commission.

Mr. Eden stated that they had not; however they had the power to make recommendations.

Mr. Molotov continued that he was not insisting on a commission.

Mr. Eden stated that he felt worried about the absence of the French. They were neighbors of Germany and had certain ideas on control of the Ruhr and Rhine. He felt that it would be a mistake to keep them out.

Mr. Molotov suggested that the question of French participation be subsequently decided by Messrs. Eden, Winant and Gusev in London.

Messrs. Stettinius and Eden stated that this would be agreeable.

Mr. Eden stated that in view of his many activities it might be impossible for him personally to participate in the London discussions.

Mr. Molotov stated that he of course had the right to deputize someone to represent him.

4. The Integration of France into the German Control Machinery on Condition that France were to receive a Zone of Occupation.

Mr. Molotov submitted a statement on this matter (see attached)3 and inquired whether it could be used for a basis of discussion.

Mr. Eden stated that since it had been agreed upon that France would receive a zone of occupation he hoped that it might also be agreed that France would participate on the Control Commission itself. He said that he foresaw all kinds of difficulties if the French were not to participate and expressed the opinion that de Gaulle in all probability would refuse to accept a zone if he did not have the same treatment on the Control Commission as the United States, Soviet Union and Great Britain. Even if France were to accept a zone they would always have trouble in administering it if they were not represented on the commission. He maintained that he could not see why it was any more of a departure to have France on the commission than on the EAC. He pointed out that the Prime Minister [Page 702] opposed enlarging the present three-power conferences; however, he could not see how the participation of France on the Control Commission would affect this view.

Mr. Molotov stated that he felt that at the present stage the question of France should be limited to the two proposals contained in the Soviet statement. If at a later date it were necessary to study French participation on the Control Commission it could be done. He felt that it was only proper that actual control should be in the hands of the three commanders-in-chief.

It was decided that the three secretaries should submit a report to the plenary session stating that: (a) it had been agreed upon to give to France a zone of occupation; and, (b) with respect to the question concerning the participation of France in the Control Commission, Messrs. Molotov and Stettinius considered it appropriate to submit this question to the consideration of the EAC, while Mr. Eden considered it appropriate to study the question at the present time and to assign to France a place on the Control Commission.

Mr. Eden stated that he believed that if France were admitted to the Control Commission the three foreign secretaries should agree that no other power should be given a zone of occupation.

Mr. Molotov suggested that there was not sufficient time to discuss that question at the present conference.

5. Reparations.

Mr. Molotov submitted a statement on this subject and summarized it in brief (copy attached).4 He requested Mr. Maisky to explain the considerations which formed the basis of the Soviet statement.

Mr. Maisky stated that the Soviet authorities had come to the figure of 20 billion dollars (ten billion dollars of property to be removed immediately after the war and ten billion dollars of reparations to be paid in kind over a period of ten years) the following way. The national wealth of Germany at the beginning of the war amounted to 125 billion dollars. It was figured that this national wealth would be reduced by 40 per cent or less during the course of the war. Thus, the national wealth of Germany at the termination of the war would amount to 75 billion dollars. An analysis of the national wealths of the more highly industrialized countries had shown that the mobile part of this wealth which could be transferred abroad amounted to approximately 30 per cent or in the case of Germany to 22–23 billion dollars. The Soviet Government proposed to remove ten billion dollars of this mobile wealth. The remainder would be left to Germany which would secure for that country living standards comparable [Page 703] to those prevailing in Central Europe. These were lower than in Germany but quite decent. With respect to the second item it had been figured that the national income of Germany before the war amounted to 30 billion dollars annually. The war would lower this income by 30–35 per cent and would bring it to the neighborhood of approximately 18–20 billion. The Soviet Government proposed to take one billion dollars annually, or 5–6 per cent from the German national income. This was not a large sum and could be supported by Germany.

Mr. Eden stated that there was one point in the opening paragraph of the Soviet statement on which he wished to comment. The Prime Minister had stated that the test for reparations payments should be not only the exertion of a country in the war, but also the sufferings endured at the hands of the enemy. On either basis the Soviet Union stood well. He would like to see reference made also to the sacrifices undergone by the Allies in the first paragraph of the Soviet statement. He continued that he agreed in principle with the second paragraph of the Soviet statement. He wished, however, to give thorough study to the Soviet document before continuing discussion of it.

Mr. Molotov stated that there would be no objections to the addition in paragraph one of the words suggested by Mr. Eden.

Mr. Stettinius stated that he also wished to give a thorough study to the Soviet document. He recalled that the President at the plenary session had stated that the United States itself would not be interested in large reparations, except with respect to German foreign investments and perhaps raw materials. He expressed the hope that at this afternoon’s plenary session the foreign secretaries could report that the reparation matter had been discussed and that it had been agreed that a commission should be established in Moscow where it would immediately commence work on the question of reparations.

Mr. Molotov stated that whenever the British and American representatives were prepared he would be ready to continue the discussions. With respect to the amount of reparations for the United States and Great Britain that was entirely the concern of those countries. However, in view of their losses, especially at sea, the Soviet Government felt that it was only just to make mention in the reparations statement of compensation going to the United States and Great Britain. He favored Mr. Stettinius’ proposal that the foreign ministers report to the plenary session that the question of reparations had been discussed, would be discussed further, and that a reparations commission would be set up in Moscow which would immediately commence work on this question.

[Page 704]

Mr. Stettinius stated that it would be helpful for the American Delegation to know whether the subject of labor would be discussed at the Crimean Conference or at a later date.

Mr. Molotov stated that this question was very complicated, that the Soviet representatives needed time for further study on it and that they were not prepared to discuss it at the present conference. He agreed that it should be discussed by the reparations Commission in Moscow.

Mr. Molotov’s interpreter then read a second paper on the creation of the reparations commission (see attached).5 Mr. Stettinius stated that his Government was prepared to accept the statement on the understanding that it had not yet agreed on the principles mentioned in it.

Mr. Eden inquired whether the Moscow Reparations Commission should not also be authorized to study German industry in connection with future security and control. If this were so, he suggested that this subject be dealt with in the draft terms of reference of the commission.

Mr. Molotov maintained that the commission would deal with German industry only in connection with reparations. The question of security, of course, would always be kept in mind although it was not the principal task of the commission.

Mr. Stettinius suggested that as a practical measure the German Control Commission should have the responsibility for the control of German industry for security purposes. The Reparations Commission should, of course, coordinate its work with the policy of the Control Machinery and should establish liaison with it.

Mr. Molotov was in agreement with this proposal.

  1. Ante, p. 117.
  2. Post, p. 707.
  3. Post, p. 707.
  4. Post, p. 708.