Moscow Embassy Files: 800 Rumania

The American Ambassador in the Soviet Union ( Harriman ) to the People’s Commissar for Foreign Affairs of the Soviet Union ( Molotov )

Dear Mr. Molotov: I have received your letter of February 27 concerning the situation in Rumania, and have brought its contents to the attention of my Government.

Meanwhile I have received a further expression of my Government’s views on this subject, and I am hastening to bring them to your attention. My Government hopes that they may be given consideration by your Government without delay.

The events of the past days have confirmed my Government’s conviction that measures should be taken at once by the principal Allies to stabilize political conditions in Rumania. In my Government’s opinion the responsibility of the Allies under the Atlantic Charter, the obligations which are implicit in the armistice agreement with Rumania, the decisions taken at the Crimea Conference and the practical war aims permit no escape from the joint responsibility of the Soviet Union, the United States and the United Kingdom for insuring the continuance of a broadly representative governmental regime in Rumania during the present period.

The following are some of the factors with respect to the present situation in Rumania which are causing concern to my Government:

The possession of arms by minority political elements, which my Government considers discriminatory and unjustified;
The suppression of the liberal democratic press by action of the Allied Control Commission or by other means;
The inadequate means at the disposal of the Rumania Government for the maintenance of order;
The failure of the Allies to give the Rumanians political guidance along lines worked out by the three members of the Control Commission in consultation.

My Government, furthermore, has been astonished to learn that General Vinogradov failed to call a meeting of the Allied Control Commission on February 24 to consider what Allied action should be taken with respect to the rapidly developing political crisis, although such a meeting was urgently requested by General Schuyler and by his British colleague. I have been instructed to request an assurance from the Soviet Government that the Chairman of the Control Commission will at once be given such instructions as will remove any doubt that the American member of the Commission has the right to have a meeting of the Commission called whenever in his judgment there are sufficient and urgent reasons for so doing.

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To meet the situation with which we are now faced, it is the considered opinion of the United States Government that the following action should be taken:

The coalition form of government in Rumania should be preserved in the present period. It should not be replaced by a government solely of the National Democratic Front or of any other narrow political faction;
The Rumanian Government should be given the means to restore order and maintain its authority, to which end prompt and effective measures should be taken to ensure it adequate military strength and support;
Immediate steps should be taken to ensure the freedom of the press in Rumania, subject to the provisions of Article XVI of the Rumanian armistice agreement;
All political parties and other special groups should be completely disarmed;
Major political matters affecting the interests and responsibilities in Rumania of the three Allied governments should in the future be made the subject of full consultation among the three members of the Allied Control Commission.

My Government hopes that the Soviet and the British Governments will concur in the foregoing proposals, and would be glad to have an indication of the views of the Soviet Government on the subject.

Sincerely yours,

[File copy not signed]