800.414/3–3145: Circular telegram

The Secretary of State to All Diplomatic Representative 16

It seems desirable that the United Nations should have the benefit at the earliest possible moment of information contained in German embassies, consulates, and other governmental offices in neutral countries. Access to such offices should make available records and documents of great value in the effort to destroy the enemy’s intelligence net work. It is believed that the terms of unconditional surrender of Germany17 agreed to by the governments of the United States of [Page 1137] America, the United Kingdom, and the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics warrant such a move. Acting unilaterally, when the surrender or collapse of Germany occurs, you are instructed to communicate at once with the foreign office the desire of this Government to have any of these offices in the country to which you are accredited made available to you immediately. Whenever the foreign office notifies you that you may have access, you should then inform your British and Soviet colleagues. Please telegraph immediately if you foresee any difficulty in carrying out this instruction.

  1. The action taken by this instruction was proposed in telegram from Supreme Commander Allied Expeditionary Force (Eisenhower), March 12, 1945, to the War Department (862.414/4–645).
  2. For draft text of terms of unconditional surrender of Germany, see Foreign Relations, The Conferences at Malta and Yalta, 1945, pp. 113118.