740.00119 Control (Bulgaria)/1–1845: Telegram

The United States Representative in Bulgaria ( Barnes ) to the Secretary of State

36. I saw this morning for the first time the annexes to the armistice with Bulgaria as they appear in the British secret “print” of October 28, which has just been received by Houstoun-Boswall.28 I trust that copies of these documents are on their way to this mission as they obviously merit more study by General Crane and myself that [than] I was able to give them in a hasty reading this morning. The fact that in his letter of October 15 to Molotov, Mr. Eden said that he would not “insist on the British and American representatives being seated in the Control Commission” before the conclusion of an armistice with Germany, would seem to justify the “Soviet” as distinct from “Allied” character of the operations of the Control Commission in Bulgaria to date; all Molotov’s characterizations in his recent reply to Eden’s representations in Moscow of about a month ago of the role of the British and American delegates on the Control Commission as primarily that of liaison.

General Oxley has been called to London to assist in the preparation of a reply to Molotov’s rebuttal to Eden’s representations. He left yesterday before the receipt of the British “print” of October 28. As I read the contents of that document this morning no basis really exists for an effective reply to Molotov’s rebuttal, and this is also the view of Houstoun-Boswall who feels very strongly that he and General Oxley have been “let down” by their government through its failure to inform them at an earlier date of what Eden had really agreed to with Molotov in the negotiations that led to the final terms of the armistice. Houstoun-Boswall said to me that it is now clear to him that every thing he and Oxley have done since their arrival here has been counter to the concessions made by Eden in Moscow, and he feels that an explanation is due the local authorities on the grounds that he and General Oxley have been operating in the dark through failure of London to keep them informed.

Under the circumstances I shall be surprised if Oxley agrees to return to Sofia, except perhaps for the express purpose of terminating his mission here. I am sure that the text of Eden’s letter of October 15 will prove a bitter pill to him. Houstoun-Boswall telegraphed him last night at Caserta to be sure and familiarize himself with the “print” of October 28 before entering into discussions in London.

  1. William E. Houstoun-Boswall, British Representative in Bulgaria.