740.00119 EW/10–145: Telegram

The Acting Secretary of State to the Ambassador in Italy (Kirk)

1730. Urtel 2902 Oct 1 and AmPolAd’s 3765 Oct l.67 Pending Secretary’s return from London, only preliminary views re revision of Ital armistice terms can be given.

Following Soviet refusal68 at Potsdam to agree to US proposals re revision of Ital armistice terms unless similar action were taken in regard to other ex-enemy states, it was provisionally agreed between US and UK Govts to accelerate steps to transfer increasing responsibility to Ital Govt and to consider action to declare certain articles of armistice inoperative. The procedure by which latter action would be taken is still to be determined but it is evident that matter should be handled through military channels and it appears probable that best method would be official communication from SACMED to Ital Govt that Allied powers considered designated clauses of armistice to be inoperative. This procedure would obviate negotiation of new agreement with its attendant difficulties while at same time would probably satisfy Ital desire for revision of armistice regime, official request for which has just been received through Tarchiani.

Dept is now giving consideration to possibility of retention only articles 11, 13, 24, 29, 30, 31, 33, 34, 36, and 43. In addition there should remain in force such provisions as may be required by presence in Italy of Allied forces until such time as a civil affairs agreement can be negotiated and come into effect. Further advice will be given you upon Secretary’s return.

Sent Rome 1730, rptd to Caserta 866.