740.00119 Control (Austria)/8–3145: Telegram

The United States Political Adviser for Austrian Affairs (Erhardt) to the Secretary of State

169. Our Commander-in-Chief making considerable progress despite fact Allied Control Commission not yet officially established. Largely on General Clark’s initiative preparation of eleven basic reports on urgent problems by sub-committees composed of representatives of each power was agreed upon at meeting of Deputy Commanders on August 27 and 28. Subjects to be considered include supplies for Vienna, use of Austrian administrative machinery, political activity, freedom of press, disposition of Sudetenlanders and Volks Deutsche,60 compilation of lists of Nazis to be apprehended and currency conversion on all of which sub-committee reports are due on or before September 10 and restoration of transportation communications and utilities and study of Austrian food and fuel resources to be covered before end of September.

Relations between top American and Soviet officials cordial especially between Koniev and Clark. Latter recognized as successful combat leader and man of action. This cordiality does not yet extend all way down but considerable progress is being made in that direction.

Clark considers food and fuel as paramount issues and MG61 is concentrating in my opinion with fair hope success on their solution from a short range standpoint. Clark does not want the Austrians to freeze or to be on a starvation diet and he will not participate in any arrangement that would permit either to happen.

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Beginning September 1 Soviets intend to withdraw their Kommandaturas from United States and British zones in Vienna.62 Our officers have been acting as observers in Bezirk63 headquarters in our districts for about one month.

  1. The Political Adviser’s office was moved to Vienna on August 23.
  2. Ethnic Germans, i.e., persons belonging to the German cultural community living outside the frontiers of the Reich and not Reich subjects. For documentation on transfer of German populations, see vol. ii, pp. 1227 ff.
  3. Military Government.
  4. Telegram 176, September 1, from the Political Adviser in Vienna informed the Department that General Clark agreed to assume control of the U.S. zone in Vienna on September 1 (740.00119 Control (Austria)/9–145).
  5. Administrative district of the city of Vienna.