740.00119 Control (Germany)/10–1745

The United States Political Adviser for Germany (Murphy) to the Secretary of State

145. The approved minutes of the meeting on October 6 of the Coordinating Committee of the Allied Control Authority36 read in part as follows:

“Quadripartite control of factories and property of the I. G. Farben industries.

The Committee considered CORC/P (45) 97.37

Discussion centered on the question of whether I. G. Farben plants and assets should be confiscated. General Clay38 stated that in the eyes of the world this particular concern stood as a symbol of German war might and that special and immediate measures should be taken not merely to establish quadrapartite ‘control’ of I. G. Farben plants and assets but to achieve outright confiscation.

The US, Soviet39 and French40 members accepted outright confiscation in principle. General Whiteley41 (British) while not disagreeing [Page 1563] in principle, asked further time to study the matter. The meeting agreed to defer action on CORC/P (45) 97 until their next meeting.”

The Department is aware of the numerous recent proposals for quadripartite (and unilateral) action in regard to seizure or confiscation of property in Germany ranging from Wehrmacht lands and war plants for reparation, through property of Nazi organizations and of war criminals, to large farms, and to other private property, where in some cases many stockholders are involved. The Department’s views regarding the policy it believes should govern such measures, having in mind the various categories of owners and types of property involved, as well as the various kinds of action proposed ranging from simple requisition to confiscation presumably without compensation, would be appreciated.

Department will have noted that Soviet and French representatives have consistently favored more drastic forms of action; whereas the British have been reluctant, and even unwilling, to depart from traditional conceptions of private property. American officials on the other hand are torn at times between the above views and the Department’s guidance would be helpful.

  1. The minutes of the twelfth meeting were transmitted to the Department with despatch 1098, October 15, from Berlin, not printed.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Lt. Gen. Lucius D. Clay, U.S. Deputy Military Governor for Germany; U.S. representative on the Coordinating Committee; and Director of the Office of Military Government of the United States for Germany (OMGUS).
  4. Army Gen. Vassily Danilovich Sokolovsky.
  5. Lt. Gen. Louis Koeltz.
  6. Maj. Gen. John F. M. Whiteley was sitting as British representative in place of Lt. Gen. Sir Brian H. Robertson.