RSC Lot 60–D 224, Box 96: U.S. Cr. Min. 36

Minutes of the Thirty-Sixth Meeting of the United States Delegation, Held at San Francisco, Friday, May 11, 1945, 2:30 p.m.

[Informal Notes]

[Here follows list of names of persons (30) present at meeting.]

[Page 664]

Senator Connally, in the absence of the Secretary, convened the meeting at 2:40 p.m.

Regional Arrangements

Senator Connally requested Mr. Dunn to report on the new draft on regional arrangements.63

(At this point the Secretary entered the room.)

The Secretary took the Chair and informed the meeting that Mr. Eden planned to leave Sunday morning because of the situation in England. He will call on President Truman on his way through Washington but will not discuss the problems of the Conference. A public statement to this effect will be made both by Mr. Eden and the Secretary at an opportune moment. The Secretary said that Mr. Eden had expressed anxiety over the regional problem at the morning meeting in the Penthouse64 and indicated that he was favorably impressed by the French amendment to Chapter VI, Section C.65 In this respect he appeared to share the opinion expressed recently by Dr. Padilla of Mexico. The Secretary added that he had tentatively called a meeting of the Big Five for tonight66 to discuss the matter. Mr. Dunn had talked by telephone with Mr. McCloy and the Secretary with Mr. Hull. The former had indicated that he would discuss the formula with the Secretary of War and report back his views. Mr. McCloy said that he had discussed the problem in an informal way with the Chiefs of Staff who had indicated that they did not want to take a position which would interfere with the working out of a political formula.

The Chairman called on Mr. Gates who reported on the reaction in Washington. Mr. Gates confirmed that Mr. McCloy had discussed the problem yesterday with the Chiefs of Staff but indicated that at that time they did not have the new formula.

Mr. Dunn reported on the conversation with Mr. Hull who had indicated that he considered the draft might offer a possible solution but wanted to mull over the formula. He had raised two questions: (1) whether the formula might encourage states to take themselves out of the Security Council, and (2) whether a political conflict might not ensue if an American state attacked another, requiring a decision by the Security Council and the adoption of a position by the United States. Mr. Dunn reported that he had indicated to Mr. Hull that states would take action under the formula only if the Security Council failed and a state was attacked; the Security Council would have to [Page 665] decide to go to the aid of the State attacked or to call a halt to the hostilities. This must be left to the discretion of the Security Council.

The Chairman requested the opinion of the military people and Mr. Gates replied that he could not speak for them. The Chair inquired if General Embick or Admiral Willson could express their personal views. General Embick reported that he had been in telephonic conversation with Mr. McCloy who considered the formula satisfactory. General Fairchild agreed with this and Admiral Willson expressed the opinion that “in view of the history of the subject” he thought the draft was adequate.

(At this point Admiral Hepburn entered the room.)

The Chair said that the draft should not be discussed with the President in Washington until after the Delegation had agreed. Mr. Gates gave assurances that the military people in Washington would limit their discussions of the proposal to their own group.

Admiral Hepburn reported that he had talked with Mr. McCloy who had said that his impression and that of others in Washington was that the Draft in its present form might weaken the world organization; that it was satisfactory in so far as it related to the protection of the inter-American system.

Mr. MacLeish inquired if the idea of attack in the draft was not too vague and recalled that Germany had entered Poland at the beginning of the present war on the pretext that Poland had attacked her. Mr. Dulles referred to the Act of Chapultepec. He said that it had two parts: first, it incorporated the principle that an attack on one American republic is an attack on all. The second part recommends the conclusion of a treaty consistent with the principles and purposes of the new international organization. He thought that it was hard to reconcile on paper the establishment of two police groups, the regional and the world. However, he saw no real clash because it was highly unlikely that a local police group would be established in the Western Hemisphere. The proposed draft takes the first part of the Act and recognizes that it establishes a valid principle. The use of the word “attack” is already in the Act of Chapultepec. We thus take the operative part of the Act and say it is acceptable, subject to the concurrent power of the Security Council. The French proposed amendment to Chapter VI, Section C, is substantially similar in concept—if the Security Council fails to act then states can take measures of defense. Mr. Dulles thought that the French proposal was unduly restrictive, involving a negative concept. The problem was to indicate definitely when there was a failure on the part of the Security Council. However, the basic concept in the two, that is, the French and the new draft, is the same, i.e., the inherent right of self-defense cannot be immobilized.

[Page 666]

Senator Connally inquired whether the Security Council could take cognizance of a situation in which there was an attack and a counterattack by other states acting in self-defense. Mr. Dunn replied in the affirmative and Mr. Dulles added that however the states were not obliged to discontinue their countermeasures taken in self-defense. In other words, that there was concurrent power.

The Chairman recalled that since the deadline had passed for the submission of amendments, no new proposal could be offered and that, therefore, we had to build on the French proposal. He also inquired whether it was necessary to mention the Act of Chapultepec. He thought that it would be hard to negotiate the new draft with the British and the Russians if the Act was mentioned. Mr. Dunn agreed that perhaps it might not be necessary to mention the Act but that we could start with it as a negotiating point. It could be dropped later if necessary. Mr. Rockefeller agreed but emphasized that the mention of the Act had a sales value for the Latin American group. Mr. Dunn thought, however, that the general language of the draft took care of the idea.

The Chairman was very strongly of the opinion that the time had arrived when, while recognizing the strategic importance of inter-American solidarity, we should not allow ourselves to be compelled to adopt a position contrary to our own view of national interest … The United States must lead, not follow. Mr. Rockefeller said the Secretary had given the right kind of leadership and that the attitude of some of the Latin American republics merely reflected the grave concern they felt over developments which they believe tended to weaken the inter-American system. This concern made them say things that they ordinarily would not say.

The Chairman said that some of the Latin American representatives had come to the Penthouse and declared that they had lost confidence in the Conference and that recent developments made them entertain doubts that an effective international organization could be created here and that it might be necessary to build a fence around the hemisphere. The Chair added that we had come to this Conference to create an international organization and could not be deviated from that course. Mr. Rockefeller referred to the support given the American Delegation with respect to the Trade Union conference, despite the fact that Mr. Toledano67 had had many of the Latin American delegations lined up in favor of admission. He did not think that they were motivated by an isolationist spirit and recalled that most of the Latin American republics had been members of the League while we had stayed out of it.

Mr. Notter spoke against the mention of the Act of Chapultepec and said that under the Act several states, not including the United [Page 667] States, could take action against another American state and the United States would have to deal with the consequences of such a situation in the Security Council. The right of self-defense is an inherent right and is not restricted to the case of a direct attack. The concept is much broader. He recalled that the concept of an indivisible peace had dominated the thinking of Mr. Roosevelt, Mr. Hull, President Truman, and Secretary Stettinius. This concept is that an attack against one state in any part of the world is an act against all. This is the concept of world security, not of regional security.

Mr. Hackworth said that the Act was mentioned merely by way of example. The Act is in fact merely a first step toward the ambition of the United States to prevent and stop aggression through the creation of a world security system. He did not think that we were setting a precedent by referring to the Act since the precedent was already in Article XXII [XXI] of the League.68 He thought that it would be helpful in securing the support of the Latin American bloc and to the world at large to have an example of the kind of regional undertaking that we consider desirable.

Senator Vandenberg inquired as to the distinction between “attack” in the first sentence and “armed attack” in the second sentence. Mr. Dulles explained that the distinction was made deliberately in order to cover the Monroe Doctrine which has two parts—the case of an overt attack and that of political efforts from outside the continent to overthrow the political institutions of the American Republics. Perhaps the word “attack” could be used to cover both contingencies but the second has specific reference to collective action under the Act of Chapultepec. Senator Vandenberg understood from this that the first was broad enough to cover a propaganda attack.

Senator Connally inquired if it would not suffice to use the language of Article XXII [XXI] of the League Covenant. Mr. Dunn read Article XXII [XXI] and Senator Connally recalled that he had drafted similar language which would cover both the Monroe Doctrine and regional arrangements and indicated a personal preference for such language. Mr. Dulles thought that this would open up regionalism; that the League Article XXII [XXI] was adequate for its time but not now. The new draft doesn’t refer to regional arrangements. It avoids the idea of regionalism in preference for the concept of self-defense.

Mr. Gates reported that the discussions yesterday in Washington were based on the previous idea developed by the Delegation, that is, [Page 668] that we proceed by way of an exception of the American system to the provision of prior authorization for enforcement actions He thought the present draft was broader and presumably covered regionalism in other parts of the world.

Senator Vandenberg said that the problem is broader and that if we proceeded by way of exception in Section C, Chapter VIII, we would encourage the specific mention of other regional arrangements, including the Arab League. Mr. Gates inquired whether since we have a unique system in this hemisphere we would not be justified in insisting on an exception. The Chairman thought that we could not expect special consideration for the inter-American system in the Charter. Mr. Dunn agreed with this.

Admiral Willson said that this was a compromise which gives all regional systems the right of automatic action but retains in the general organization the exclusive right to determine when there is a threat to the peace.

Commander Stassen expressed the opinion that the Advisers had done an able job and that he would join in a recommendation to the President that the draft be accepted, after the Secretaries of War and Navy had been heard from. He considered that this was a high policy decision which must be passed upon by the President. He thought the formula was a satisfactory compromise since it (1) placed no restrictions on pacific settlement by regional means, (2) recognizes the paramount authority of the world organization in enforcement but (3) permitted freedom of action for all in the event of failure by the general organization and of an attack. He thought the formula fits both world and regional requirements. Mr. Gates inquired if this formula didn’t encourage regionalism which would shut us out of other parts of the world in which we had a direct and vital interest. Commander Stassen thought it did not since it applied only in case of an attack. We cannot prevent an immediate response to a direct attack and moreover this provision did not affect enforcement action. This was the same principle as in private law in which defense must have relation to the nature of the attack. In the case of propaganda we would respond with propaganda. In the case of an armed attack we would respond with an armed attack, this however, without prejudice to the continued authority of the Security Council.

Mr. Dulles stressed that the principle operates if the Security Council is paralyzed by unwarranted exercise of the veto power and Mr. Rockefeller agreed and stressed that the Act of Chapultepec has a symbolic value similar to the Monroe Doctrine and that it would be helpful to have a specific reference to it in the formula. Commander Stassen agreed with this opinion and said that if the principle is sound we should have a specific mention. The Act is the modern Monroe Doctrine. Mr. Sandifer expressed the opinion that it was [Page 669] not desirable to include the Act since it was a transient instrument. To this Mr. Hackworth said that the Act has two parts, one of which relates to the war period and ends with it and the other to the postwar in which the implementation of the Act is contemplated through the negotiation of a treaty. Senator Connally thought there was merit in the mention of the Act in so far as it might constitute a warning to other states to keep out of this hemisphere and in so far as it might give body and content to the vague concept of self-defense. The Chair inquired whether it might not be desirable to mention the Monroe Doctrine and Senator Vandenberg thought that such a reference was outdated—that we had gone beyond the point where we could speak exclusively of the Monroe Doctrine. Mr. Gerig called attention to the fact that mention of the Monroe Doctrine in Article XXII [XXI] in the League Covenant had always proved rather embarrassing at Geneva; that it was very difficult to explain to non-American states precisely what was meant by the Monroe Doctrine.

The Chair at this point canvassed the opinion of the meeting and it was agreed that the new draft should be discussed with the other sponsoring governments.

Mr. Bowman said that there appeared to be consensus that the draft represented our maximum demands. He thought this should be made clear to Mr. Eden so that he would have the assurance that later on we would not ask for more. The Chairman again said that in the discussions he would stress that we had built on the French amendment and would discuss the draft in general terms, since the specific text had not yet been cleared by the War and Navy Departments or approved by the President. Mr. Dunn thought it desirable not to say that the new draft was a modification of the French amendment but rather that it was based on the French position. Senator Connally thought that the Delegation must come to a definite conclusion and stand by it in the discussions with the other powers. He said that it might be well to emulate Stalin’s tactics at Yalta where he had told Churchill and Roosevelt that he could not vary from the position he had taken; that it was the sine qua non of Russian approval of the Yalta conclusions. The Chair agreed that a firm position should be taken but thought it should be with respect to the fundamental ideas contained in the draft and not on the exact text.

Mr. Rockefeller said that the draft under consideration represented our minimum demands, not the maximum, as Mr. Bowman had indicated. Mr. Bowman replied that he had reference solely to the fact that Eden is about to leave and the Secretary must take a position and inform Eden that he can leave with the assurance that his deputies will not be called upon to make greater concessions later on. Commander Stassen thought that the draft represented both the minimum and the maximum.

[Page 670]

Mr. MacLeish thought that we would regret the formula as long as the memory of the Conference lasted. He referred specifically to the vague terminology, specifically the term “attack”. He also considered that the state attacked and the other states siding with it should be required specifically to submit to a decision of the Security Council. Mr. Pasvolsky thought that the third sentence of the draft amply satisfied the point raised by Mr. MacLeish. He thought, however, that the draft would require public explanation so as to avoid the impression that the Security Council had lost out. The point should be driven home that the formula covered only emergency situations and that the Security Council had the power to stop the fighting at any stage.

(At this point the Secretary, Mr. Gates, and General Embick left the meeting to talk by telephone with Mr. McCloy.)

Mr. Dunn declared that states already have the right to take measures of self-defense against attack and that the draft should be read in relation to the responsibility given the Security Council and the right of the states to submit the case to the council and their obligation to abide by its decision. Commander Stassen thought the formula would be attacked by extremists on both sides and agreed that it was necessary to have a full explanation of the background and meaning of the draft. Mr. Dunn stressed that the formula would of course work only if good faith was present.

(At this point Representative Bloom entered the meeting.)

Mr. Pasvolsky suggested certain drafting changes, particularly the insertion of the word “inherent” before the phrase “right to take measures of self-defense” and also that the words “be reported immediately to the Security Council and shall not in any way” be added before the phrase “affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council.…” Senator Connally said that he agreed with the revisions and that it was clear that they did not mean that the states attacked should stop fighting before the necessary counter-measures were taken by the world organization; that the situation was similar to that of the individual who could continue to protect himself until adequate police measures had been taken. Mr. Gerig pointed out that the draft not only didn’t affect the authority of the Security Council but includes the right of the attacked state to appeal to the Council. Mr. Dunn added that as far as the Western Hemisphere is concerned we had additional protection in our veto right.

Senator Vandenberg inquired as to which of the Conference committees had jurisdiction. Mr. Pasvolsky thought that perhaps a joint subcommittee should study the proposal in the first instance and that ultimately the Coordination Committee would decide as to location. Senator Vandenberg recalled that Subcommittee III/4/A had been [Page 671] requested to consolidate or amalgamate the various amendments offered to Section C of Chapter VIII70 and that the draft, in his opinion, could be submitted direct to the Subcommittee.

Statement to the Press

. . . . . . .

The United States Position on the Amendments Offered by Other Delegations

Mr. Pasvolsky reported? that the Committee of Five had studied the ten questions before it and had completed part of the work. Substantial agreement had been reached to recommend acceptance of the first sentence of the Australian proposal on membership.71

Dean Gildersleeve reported that the group of Advisers and Technical Experts assigned to Committee I/1 had met all afternoon to study the amendments suggested by other governments and to point up the issues which required decision by the United States Delegation. Mr. Sandifer informed the Delegation that a report on the work of the various commissions and committees had been prepared and distributed. It was agreed that there would be no committee meetings tomorrow and that the Delegation would meet at 9:00 a.m. and stay in session all morning to determine the United States position, on the various amendments.

Voting Procedure in the Committees

Representative Bloom inquired as to the voting procedure in the committees and Mr. Pasvolsky said that this question had come up in the Committee of Five but that a final decision had not been taken.

It was agreed that the amendments proposed by other governments should be voted upon in the first instance and rejected. If it appeared that the vote would be against the United States position, appointment of a subcommittee should be suggested and if this failed the United States representative should reserve the position of the Delegation. Mr. Pasvolsky stressed that pressure for an increase in the members of the Security Council should be opposed by every means and if necessary carried back through the Executive and Steering Committees.

Senator Connally thought the Steering or Executive Committee should rule on the number and duration of speeches. He thought that something should be done immediately since the tendency to make long speeches was delaying the work of the Conference.

Jurisdictional Disputes Between Committees

Mr. Armstrong inquired as to the procedure where there was a dispute between two committees as to where a given subject should be [Page 672] discussed. Mr. Pasvolsky said that this problem had come up in the Coordination Committee and that no agreement had been reached. He thought, perhaps, that the issue could be settled by the Steering Committee. Mr. Armstrong said that in practice the Chairmen were deciding either individually or in consultation and Representative Bloom thought this was undesirable since it might foreclose the issue; he considered the dispute should go direct to the body competent to decide such questions. Mr. Pasvolsky then suggested that perhaps it might be better that the matter be reported to the President of the Conference through the Secretary General. It was agreed that this should be done.

Regional Arrangements (Continued)

(The Secretary, Mr. Gates, and General Embick returned to the meeting.)

The Chair reported he had talked with Mr. McCloy who had just finished a conversation with the War and Navy Secretaries who felt that the draft placed too much emphasis on regionalism at the expense of the world system. They thought it might be better to go back to the idea of a specific exception for this hemisphere. Mr. McCloy was to talk again with the Secretaries of War and Navy and report back. The Chairman also said that Mr. McCloy thought the drafting changes agreed upon at the meeting would be helpful.

Mr. Gates added that the impression in Washington appeared to be that the draft strengthened our position in the Western Hemisphere from the military point of view but that the problem of world security was not adequately covered; that the formula might be a wide open invitation to regionalism; and that the distinction between “attack” and “armed attack” gave rise to certain doubts. Senator Vandenberg thought that it would be very difficult to explain in the Committee and in the Senate the distinction between the two concepts of “attack” and “armed attack”. Mr. Hackworth thought it might be better to speak of “armed attack” in both cases and The Chair thought it might be useful to use the word “aggression” instead of “attack”. Mr. Dulles suggested that there be no tinkering with the text around the table since every word had been carefully scrutinized by the group which had prepared it and that if there were any suggestions for drafting changes they should be referred to the small group for study and report.

The Chairman inquired as to what should be done with respect to the meeting with the other sponsoring governments and France scheduled for tonight and specifically whether the other sponsoring delegations [Page 673] should be with him when he discussed the draft with Mr. Eden. He thought perhaps it was better to confine the conversation to Mr. Eden since his departure made it necessary to be specific with him. Mr. Pasvolsky was of the opinion that tonight’s meeting of Five should be called off and that Mr. Eden should be told that the Delegation was moving in the direction set out in the draft. Senator Vandenberg thought that the others could be seen later in the evening. Mr. Pasvolsky believed Mr. Eden would accept the proposal since he had been worried regarding the situation which would ensue if the Security Council failed to take action as a consequence of the exercise of the veto power by one of the permanent members.

It was agreed that the procedure from here on should be: (a) the Delegation would wait to hear the views of the Secretaries of War and Navy; (b) if these views were favorable, the draft would be submitted to President Truman for his approval; (c) the Secretary would cancel his meeting with the representatives of the four sponsoring powers and M. Bidault and would explain in an informal manner to Mr. Eden and his chief advisers the general lines of the Delegation’s thinking; (d) in negotiating the draft the position would be taken that it was simply a United States modification of the French proposal.

Representation of the Delegation at Committee Meetings

Representative Bloom stressed that it was important that a voting member of the Delegation be at all committee and subcommittee meetings. Mr. Sandifer referred to a directive issued recently by the Chairman with respect to this matter. The Chairman stated that the Secretary General of the Delegation had the responsibility to see that a voting representative of the United States was at every committee meeting. In the absence of the delegate, the adviser would vote and in his absence the principal technical expert assigned to the committee.

Statement to the Press (Continued)

Mr. MacLeish reverted to his previous request for instructions regarding a statement to the Press, particularly if he were asked whether the subject had been referred to Washington.…

Mr. Hickerson’s suggestion was approved, to the effect that the Press be informed that there were approximately seventeen amendments on the various aspects of the problem and that the Delegation had spent the afternoon considering the position it should take, that it had made progress, but that it had not completed its studies.

The meeting was adjourned by the Chairman at 5:00 p.m.

[Page 674]

(Regional Arrangements)

(This is a new paragraph to be added to Chapter VIII, Section B, as paragraph 12.)71a

12. In the event of an attack by any state against any member state, such member State shall possesses the inherent right to take measures of self-defense. The inherent right to take measures of self-defense against armed attack shall apply to arrangements, like those embodied in the Act of Chapultepec, under which all members of a group of states agree to consider an attack against any one of them as an attack against all of them. The taking of such measures shall be reported immediately to the Security Council and shall not in any way affect the authority and responsibility of the Security Council under this Charter to take at any time such action as it may deem necessary in order to maintain or restore international peace and security.

  1. See annex, p. 674.
  2. In his Diary of May 11, Mr. Stettinius noted: “Eden came to talk with me at 10:30 this morning and I did not talk, but we have got to talk to him on this before he goes.”
  3. Doc. 2, G/7 (o), March 21, UNCIO Documents, vol. 3, pp. 384.
  4. The meeting was not held.
  5. Lombardo Toledano, Mexican labor leader.
  6. Reference is apparently to article 21: “Nothing in this Covenant shall be deemed to affect the validity of international engagements, such as treaties of arbitration or regional understandings like the Monroe Doctrine, for securing the maintenance of peace”, Foreign Relations, The Paris Peace Conference, 1919, vol. xiii, p. 92.
  7. Doc. 196, III/4/, May 10, UNCIO Documents, vol. 12, p. 669.
  8. Doc. 2, G/14(1), May 5, ibid., vol. 3, p. 543.
  9. Marginal notation on the original: “(Deletions made at the Delegation meeting of May 11, are indicated by lines through the word and additions by underscoring.)”