Memorandum by the Director of the Office of Special Political Affairs (Hiss) to the Acting Secretary of State (Acheson)

Designation of Alternate Representatives to the General Assembly to act in place of absent Representatives

Mr. Rothwell6 thought that you wanted a supplemental letter to the letters of appointment covering the above subject. Miss Evans7 was not certain just where you had left the matter. I hope that you will not feel that a supplemental letter is necessary.

It seems to me wiser and safer not to raise this question but to rely upon the order in which the Alternate Representatives’ nominations were sent to the Senate as determining the order in which they will fill any vacancies that may occur among the five representatives. The order of the Alternate Representatives is: Messrs. Bloom, Eaton, Walker, Dulles and Townsend. This seems to be the general assumption and also the proper order of succession. I think that to raise the subject specifically in a letter is to magnify it unnecessarily.

The matter may prove to be academic anyway as we are trying to make arrangements for the American Alternate Representatives as well as Representatives to have the right to sit in the Assembly at the plenary sessions. In general we have tried to minimize the distinction between the Representatives and the Alternate Representatives and the letters of appointment were drafted with this in mind. We plan to have the Alternates as well as the Representatives at all delegation meetings and the terms of the letters of appointment give them equal voice in delegation discussions, even vis-à-vis the organization. The distinction will be minimized because the Assembly’s rules of procedure permit persons other than the Representatives to attend committee sessions, which will be the principal activity during the period we are in London.8

  1. C. Easton Rothwell, Assistant to Mr. Stettinius, and at this time designated to be Secretary General of the United States Delegation to the General Assembly.
  2. Barbara Evans, Secretary to Mr. Acheson.
  3. No other documentation has been found on this question, but it may be noted that the practice of the United States Delegation at London both within itself and in its external relationships was to draw no distinction between Representatives and Alternate Representatives.