RSC Lot 60–D 224, Box 99: UNCIO Cons Five Min 3 (Parts I and II)
Minutes of the Third Five-Power Informal Consultative Meeting on Proposed Amendments (Part I), Held at San Francisco, Saturday, May 12, 1945, 2:30 p.m.
[Here follows list of names of participants, including members of delegations of the United States (12); United Kingdom (4); Soviet Union (4); France (3); and the International Secretariat (1).]
At the request to Mr. Stettinius, Mr. Hiss made a statement concerning the procedure of the Committees.
. . . . . . .
Mr. Stettinius said that the main problem which the group had been assembled to consider was that of regional arrangements. He said that the United States Delegation had studied the amendment put forward by the French and taking the French language as a basis they had drawn up a new draft. The text of the French amendment referred to by Mr. Stettinius is as follows, and has been put forward by the French as an amendment to Chapter VI, Section C, Paragraph 1: “Should the Council not succeed in reaching a decision, the members of the Organization reserve to themselves the right to act as they may consider necessary in the interest of peace, right and justice”. (Doc. 2, g/7 (o)).83 He would hand the text of the draft prepared by the United States Delegation to those present for their confidential information.
He proceeded to read the text as follows which would be a new Paragraph 12 of Chapter VIII, Section B: “Should the Security Council not succeed in preventing aggression, and should aggression occur by any state against any member state, such member state possesses the inherent right to take necessary measures for self-defense. The right to take such measures for self-defense against armed attack shall also apply to understandings or 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 [Page 692] shall be immediately reported 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.”
Ambassador Gromyko inquired whether this affected the amendment to Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2 jointly proposed by the four powers.84 Mr. Stettinius said definitely that it was not intended to affect the amendment.
Mr. Eden immediately expressed an intense dislike for the draft. He said that it was clearly of Latin American origin. It would result in regionalism of the worst kind. The draft made him very unhappy and he would be frank to say he did not like it a bit.
Ambassador Gromyko said that he would like time to study the draft.
Ambassador Bonnet inquired where it was proposed to put this provision. Mr. Stettinius pointed out that it was intended to be a new paragraph in Chapter VIII, Section B.
Mr. Eden said that no one had been able to define aggression in thirty years. He said that if such a provision as this were included in the Charter he would not be able to sign it. It would make it a Latin American document. He inquired what was wrong with the French amendment. He could not see why the French amendment did not take care of the situation with which the United States draft was intended to deal.
Senator Vandenberg remarked that the British had brought forward an amendment proposing a recognition of special treaties. Mr. Eden rejoined that these treaties were limited in time and scope and that they were directed against preventing renewed aggression by the enemy states.
Mr. Stettinius asked that Senators Connally and Vandenberg comment upon this matter from the viewpoint of the United States Senate.
Senator Connally referred to the long history of the Monroe Doctrine dating back to the days of Canning. He said that as a practical matter what happened in this Hemisphere had not actually been a cause of world wars. If the countries in this Hemisphere adopt an agreement for resistance this attack against aggression question would not affect the world organization.[Page 693]
The Senator emphasized that self defense is an inherent right. If we are attacked, we can act. We have a right to resist. After we have acted, then we would be obligated to report to the world Organization. With respect to the question of ratification of the Charter of the world Organization by the Senate everybody knows the importance which the Senate attaches to the Monroe Doctrine and to the recent application of this Doctrine in the Act of Chapultepec.
Mr. Eden remarked that he had not come here for the purpose of signing a regional agreement. If what was wanted was a Latin American regional arrangement that was all right with him but he would have nothing to do with it.
Senator Connally referred to the Franco-Russian and the Anglo-Russian treaties and said that we had agreed in the amendment to Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2, which we had jointly sponsored, to recognize these treaties and to accept them for approval by the Security Council. He did not see why in return the other sponsoring governments were not willing to recognize our special problem in this Hemisphere.
Senator Vandenberg said that in his view this matter was on all fours with the Russian request for an amendment to Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2 excepting the Russian treaties from control by the Security Council. He recognized that Russia could not afford to give up reliance on these treaties until the world Organization had demonstrated its capacity to guarantee security. On the other hand how could the American Republics be expected to give up the guarantee of security which they had in the Inter-American System until the world Organization had demonstrated its ability to maintain security. The two situations were in his opinion on all fours and there was no justification for denying recognition to the special needs of Latin American countries and of the United States in this Hemisphere.
Mr. Stassen said he thought it was important to recognize that there were three stages in the development of world security. The first has to do with peaceful methods of settlement. In this area no one questioned the propriety of emphasis on regional action for the peaceful settlement of disputes. The second is the matter of enforcement. What sanctions shall be applied, and how. The world Organization should have complete and exclusive jurisdiction with respect to determination and enforcement. The third relates to action in the event of the absence or failure of enforcement. He said that the right of self defense must be reserved to meet such a situation. In Europe this has been done through the exception allowed with respect to the treaties against the enemy states. So in this hemisphere the Charter of the world Organization cannot take away the right of self defense. Recognition must be given to the right of joint action in [Page 694] self defense. This three stage situation is recognized in the draft proposed by the United States.
Ambassador Koo said that one or two points were not clear to him. As he understood it the aggression to which reference is made in this draft is not limited either in time or scope. The second point was as to whether the conditional clause in the first sentence, “Should the Security Council not succeed in preventing aggression” is applicable to the second sentence. The second sentence provides “The right to take such measures for self defense against armed attack which also apply to understandings or 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”.
Mr. Stassen said that the right of collective or group action only comes into operation in the event of an armed attack.
Senator Connally repeated that he thought that the United States proposal was not greatly at variance with the Anglo-Soviet and the Franco-Soviet treaties. Under these treaties, as in the case of the Act of Chapultepec an attack against one is treated as an attack against all parties to the agreement. In both cases the treaties were aimed at resistance to armed aggression. The United States draft enlarges the scope but not the principle of the exception already agreed upon with respect to Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2.
Mr. Bidault said that because of his limited knowledge of English he had not been able to follow the discussions closely. Some of the shading and nuances of meaning might have escaped him. He thought however, that his thinking ran along the lines of Mr. Stassen’s. That is, there are three steps in security. First, there is an immediate reliance on group or regional agreements; next comes the world Organization; finally, when the world Organization has proved itself to be effective regional agreements can be modified or dropped. In the meantime such agreements or arrangements must be maintained for immediate action in case of danger. Mr. Bidault said that his reaction was not like that of Mr. Eden. However, he wanted time to think over this text.
Ambassador Gromyko inquired whether this represented a formal proposal on the part of the United States. Mr. Stetttnius said that it did not, that it was offered entirely informally for consultation and discussion.
Ambassador Gromyko inquired further whether this draft was based on a proposal from the American Republics. Mr. Stettinius said that this was not the case but that it represented rather an attempt on the part of Technicians on the United States Delegation to meet the views of the various interested parties on this question.[Page 695]
Ambassador Gromyko said that it was his understanding that the Latin American states had asked for the right of independent action. That is action without approval of the Security Council. This might well result in a series of regional organizations acting independently of the Council; one for Latin America, one for Europe and others elsewhere. These regional organizations would act independently and only report to the Security Council. They would not be subject to its control.
Senator Vandenberg emphasized that our purpose was the very reverse of this. As soon as the world Organization proves its effectiveness in guaranteeing security, we would accept the jurisdiction of the Security Council as exclusive.
Ambassador Gromyko said that this point was covered in connection with the amendment proposed for Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2. There was an important difference in that amendment in that these treaties were limited in application to the enemy countries and they would only continue in effect until the functions provided in them were transferred to the world Organization by consent of the parties in the draft proposed by the United States. On the contrary, in the United States draft there was no time limit to the exception proposed.
Senator Vandenberg said that he would be happy to accept the same formula as to time action [limit?] as that contained in Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2.
Mr. Eden pointed out that the two situations were entirely different in this respect and that such a time limit would not be appropriate. Senator Vandenberg rejoined that we proposed action only when the world Organization has failed to maintain peace and security.
Mr. Stassen pointed out that the United States draft would not give the regional organization freedom of action. It is not as broad as the treaty formula in Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2. Under that formula the parties to the treaties could take enforcement action against the enemy states. Under the United States draft there is no right of enforcement. There is only the right of action in self defense against armed attack.
Mr. Eden wanted to know why a proposal had been made that was so far removed from the concept and purpose of the Anglo-Soviet and the Franco-Soviet treaties. He emphasized that the entire concept which had been in prospect in calling this Conference was that of world Organization. Did we want a world Organization, recognizing the existence of some treaties and agreements or did we want a concept of regional organization topped by a world Organization with very limited powers. The four powers had tried in the previous formula (Chapter VIII, Section C, Paragraph 2) to protect the concept of world Organization. This had been done very carefully by [Page 696] imposing a specific time limit on the continuation of the treaties in question.
On the contrary, embodying in the Charter a draft of the character brought forward by the United States could only have the effect of encouraging groups of states everywhere to enter into regional arrangements and organizations. The whole concept of world Organization would thus be undermined. This was what worried him and he could not for a minute accept a concept so alt variance with the purpose for which the San Francisco Conference had been called.
Senator Vandenberg inquired of Mr. Eden how he thought the United States and the other American Republics were to meet the need with which they were very definitely confronted. Mr. Eden said that he saw the difficulty which existed. He had thought that the French formula would meet the situation satisfactorily. He was intensely afraid of any formula which draws attention to regional organization. Regionalism is the thing which frightened him.
Senator Vandenberg said that he totally agreed with the need for world Organization but at the same time he thought it was essential to protect the special needs of the United States and the other American Republics in this Hemisphere.
Mr. Stettinius said again that the draft put forward by the United States was informal and for study among the five powers.
Senator Vandenberg asked if it would be possible to meet again before Mr. Eden left. Mr. Eden said that he would like very much to do so.
Mr. Pasvolsky said that he wished to bring to the attention of the group a draft which had been prepared in the Committee of Five on Chapter V, Section B, Paragraph 1. He pointed out first that it made a distinction between recommendation relative to principles of cooperation from [and?] principles relative to maintenance of peace and security. The present paragraph would be broken into two paragraphs, the first relating to principles of cooperation and the second to principles of the maintenance of peace and security. There was no doubt of the power of the General Assembly to make recommendations upon the first. In the second place with reference to Assembly action on actual questions, it was suggested that the existing limitation on the power of the Assembly be modified to the extent of authorizing it to call attention of the Security Council to the situations. In the third place the Committee had adopted to rewrite the last sentence of the paragraph in a more precise form. It had taken the Australian amendment86 and adapted it. The whole draft was in accord with the Dumbarton Oaks concept of the General Assembly in acting while the Council was dealing with a dispute. Mr. Pasvolsky [Page 697] said that the language of the Dumbarton Oaks Proposals had been somewhat ambiguous and had caused a misunderstanding as to what the Assembly could do while the Security Council has a case under consideration.
Mr. Jebb said that he had not had time to show Mr. Eden the draft to which Mr. Pasvolsky referred. He had presented it briefly and in broad terms to a meeting of the British Delegation. Mr. Stettinius agreed that consideration of the draft should be postponed.
Ambassador Gromyko inquired whether the formula would meet the desires of the other countries. Mr. Pasvolsky said that it was intended to do so. For this reason the revision had been based on the Australian amendment. With the new text there would be no doubt of the meaning of the provision and of the circumstances in which the General Assembly might make recommendations.
Ambassador Gromyko said that he thought the idea was the same in both texts. He wondered whether the proposed change actually improves the situation and meets the desires of other delegations. Mr. Pasvolsky thought that it did.
Mr. Stettinius again suggested that further study be given to this provision and that it might be considered again early next week.
Mr. Eden said that he was leaving tomorrow morning and suggested that a meeting be held yet this evening to consider further the regional question precipitated by the United States draft. It was agreed that another meeting should be held at six o’clock.
Sir Alexander Cadogan, Mr. Butler and Mr. Jebb remained in the Penthouse after the representatives of the other countries had left and a discussion [was] undertaken of the United States draft with a view to adjusting it in a manner to make it acceptable to the United Kingdom Delegation for the United States.*
Senator Connally, Senator Vandenberg, Mr. Stassen, Mr. Dunn, Mr. Rockefeller, Mr. Pasvolsky, Mr. Dulles, Mr. Warren, Mr. Raynor, Mr. Hartley and Mr. Sandifer participated in the discussion.
Mr. Eden and Mr. Stettinius were present at the beginning of this discussion and returned shortly before the meeting reconvened at six o’clock.
Mr. Eden was in a more conciliatory mood at the beginning of the intervening meeting. He said that he expected that basis could be found on which the United States and the United Kingdom could agree.
Mr. Dulles emphasized that the United States did not want to encourage regionalism.[Page 698]
Mr. Eden remarked that God knows we were as well aware as he as to how the world would react to a provision which was as potentially regional in character as the draft which the United States had produced in the meeting just adjourned. He said that he had no objection whatever to the desire of the Senators to safeguard properly the right of action through the Inter-American System.
Mr. Stettinius expressed his deep regret at the way things had gone. He said that it had been intended that Mr. Dunn should see Sir Alexander before the meeting at 2:30 and show him the draft. There had been an unfortunate slip on this. The pressure of time had made it impossible for Mr. Dunn to get together with Sir Alexander, consequently the United Kingdom Delegation had very unfortunately not had an opportunity to see the draft before the meeting began.[Page 705]
- Doc. 2, G/7(o), March 21, UNCIO Documents, vol. 3, p. 385.↩
- Doc. 2, G/29(a), May 11, UNCIO Documents, vol. 3, p. 629.↩
- Doc. 2, G/14(1), May 5, UNCIO Documents, vol. 3, p. 552 (No. 28).↩
- Minutes of this discussion as recorded by Mr. Hartley are annexed. [Footnote in the original; see memorandum of conversation, printed as annex 1 to these minutes.]↩
- Annex A not printed; for text of proposed amendment, see ante, p. 691, last paragraph.↩
- Annex B not printed; see ante, p. 691, paragraph beginning, “Mr. Stettinius said”.↩
- For text of the “Act to Promote the Defense of the United States”, approved March 11, 1941, see 55 Stat. 31.↩
- For text, see first quoted paragraph of minutes of informal drafting session, printed as annex 2, below.↩
- Draft prepared for a new paragraph 12 at the end of section B, chapter VIII.↩