124.60F/5–1045: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Chargé to the Czechoslovak Government in Exile in London (Schoenfeld)

Zecho 17. Since the transmission of Department’s 955, April 26, 7 p.m. to Moscow, repeated to you as Zecho 13 April 26, 7 p.m., the Department has awaited developments in Moscow and in the military situation before taking further steps to get the mission into Czechoslovakia. This explains the delay in replying to your Zecho 34, April 6, 6 p.m.86 and Zecho 41 April 14, 8 p.m.87

For your confidential information, the War Department has not been able to inform us of the precise location of our lines in Czechoslovakia or what our future military position will be. You will be immediately informed of any developments in the military situation.

Kennan reported on April 29 (Moscow’s 1414 April 29, 7 p.m.) that the head of the American section of the Foreign Affairs Commissariat said the matter of admittance of the mission would be settled “in the very near future”. No satisfactory agreement has been reached either in Moscow or in the Secretary’s discussions with Molotov.88 [Page 450] In view of the delays and the steps which have been taken to meet the original Soviet objections, the Department believes that the plan outlined in Department’s Zecho 16, May 8, 7 p.m.89 will solve the problem if the military situation permits such action to be taken.

. . . . . . .

A draft Civil Affairs Agreement (your Zecho 43, April 21, 2 p.m., Zecho 45, April 21, 8 p.m.,90 and despatch 269, April 2191 is now being discussed at the War Department and with the British Embassy. A request was sent to Masaryk92 by the Czechoslovak Embassy asking his Government’s views and the advisability of negotiating an agreement here. He referred the question to Košice but has received no reply. A draft agreement has been prepared here by CCS and also by SHAEF and we are prepared to take action as soon as definite word is received from the Czechoslovak Government concerning authority to negotiate an agreement.93 Can you ascertain from Ripka what progress has been made in formulating the views of his Government and any decision as to where the agreement will be negotiated?

The Czechoslovak note of April 25 (your Zecho 49 April 28, 4 p.m.94 and despatch 271, April 2891

Can you inform us of the rank of the British Military Attaché?

  1. Not printed.
  2. Not printed; in it the Chargé to the Czechoslovak Government in Exile in London reported that the British had taken up with the Soviet Government the question of the departure of British diplomatic personnel for Czechoslovakia. The Chargé also stated that it would be of great value if the American diplomatic mission to Czechoslovakia could have a radio transmitter and necessary personnel, and he suggested that radio equipment and an operator might be obtained from the OSS. (701.4160F/4–1445)
  3. In the course of a conversation with the Secretary of State at San Francisco on May 2, Foreign Commissar Molotov stated that the military situation was the reason the United States diplomatic mission could not proceed to Czechoslovakia, but that it would be able to proceed shortly. (860C.00/5–245)
  4. Not printed; it stated that the Department proposed to ask the War Department to send an American diplomatic official to Prague if American military forces occupied that city. It was not deemed advisable to send Klieforth or anyone of his rank until the Czechoslovak Government was installed in the capital, but a lower ranking officer could take over Embassy property and arrange communications and transportation for the mission (124.60F/5–845).
  5. Latter not printed; it reported that the Czechoslovak military mission in Great Britain had requested agreement to the assignment of two Czechoslovak liaison officers to Supreme Headquarters, Allied Expeditionary Force, to advise on Czechoslovak military and civil affairs (860F.01/4–2145).
  6. Not printed.
  7. Jan Masaryk continued to be Minister for Foreign Affairs in the new Czechoslovak Government formed in Košice on April 4.
  8. Telegram 2003, May 11, to Paris for Murphy, advised that the Department and the British Embassy were agreed that an intergovernmental agreement on civil affairs was politically desirable in view of the important position which Czechoslovakia occupied in Central Europe and in view of the differences with the Soviet Union on the question of United States and British diplomatic representation in Czechoslovakia (860F.01/5–245).
  9. Telegram Zecho 49 from London not printed; it reported that Czechoslovak Minister Ripka had requested that the United States Government be informed that Czechoslovak authorities had asked the British Government and military authorities for the transfer of the Czechoslovak ground and air forces serving with British forces, to the United States forces operating in the direction of Czechoslovakia so as to give those Czechoslovak forces the opportunity to fight over Czechoslovak territory (860F.20/4–2845).
  10. Not Printed.