841.2375/2–245: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to Mr. Alexander C. Kirk, Political Adviser to the Supreme Allied Commander, Mediterranean Theater, at Caserta

117. Reurtels 39748 and 39948a February 2. The British Embassy here has communicated to the Department the Foreign Office view that the sending to Albania of American civilian officers at a time when the British are seeking to send a military mission might be taken by the Albanians and in other quarters as representing a difference in attitude regarding Albania on the part of the American and British Governments. The Department was also informed that the Foreign Office had telegraphed to Mr. Eden49 the suggestion that Hoxha be told that his failure to receive a British military mission can only delay consideration of the question of recognition.

The Department hopes that you have meanwhile communicated to the Albanian representative the reply of this Government as set forth in its 82 January 31. If not, you should seek to do so at once. We do not feel that our position need be modified because of Hoxha’s treatment of the British proposal for a military mission or by fear that he will refuse to allow American civilians to be in the country for the purpose of assessing the situation there. There is no objection to your letting it be known that such refusal would only serve to prevent our ascertaining the facts on which we must base any decision regarding recognition and that we might be forced to make public the fact that we had sought agreement to the sending of representatives into Albania for this purpose and had been refused.

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For your own information, we are in no way disposed to step out ahead of the British in the matter of relations with Albania nor do we want to embarrass them in their present negotiations. While we hold generally parallel views in this matter, we do not believe that any advantage is to be gained by adopting entirely like procedures or by identifying our attitude too closely with that of the British. Should Hoxha indicate a readiness to have American civilian representatives in Albania it would be difficult for him to refuse similar facilities to the British in case they should later decide to modify their present plans and send in civilian rather than military personnel.

  1. Not printed; it reported that British authorities in Bari were informed by their Foreign Office that representations were being made to the Department with a view to persuading the United States Government to agree not to send any Foreign Service representatives into Albania until Hoxha agreed to accept a British military mission (841.2375/2–245).
  2. Not printed.
  3. Anthony Eden, British Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs.