Mr. Alexander C. Kirk, Political Adviser, Allied Force Headquarters, to the Secretary of State
[Received 7:50 p.m.]
2156. We have learned that General Jovanovic, Tito’s Chief of Staff, rudely requested the British and American Military Missions in Belgrade (and their field representatives) to leave Yugoslavia on the ground that their work could be handled by the respective Military Attaches. It has been pointed out that this is obviously a retaliation for the British American attitude on Trieste and Austria. When the British representative was informed of this request he replied to General Jovanovic that he, of course, realized that Yugoslav Missions in Cairo, Rome and Bari would also be requested to withdraw. This did not seem to disturb Jovanovic. When the head of the American Military Mission77 endeavored to explain to General Jovanovic the benefits that Yugoslavia has derived from the Allied Mission to Belgrade (recognition, material aid, et cetera), Jovanovic stated that the Partisans would have won with or without Allied support and then went into a rage as to who had first seized Venezia Giulia and Trieste. OSS are issuing instructions to its mission in Belgrade to begin making preparations for thinning out of its representation in Yugoslavia.
[Here follow details of a proposed reduction in the strength of the British Military Mission in Yugoslavia.]
- Lt. Col. Charles W. Thayer.↩