CFM Files

United States Delegation Minutes

CFM(D) (46) 109th Meeting


[Page 350]
M. Vyshinsky (Chairman)
M. Gusev
Gen. Slavin
M. Stetsenko
France U.K.
M. Couve de Murville Mr. Jebb
M. de Courcel Lord Hood
M. Gros Brigadier Dove
Lieut. Col. Clementin Group Captain Braithwaite
M. Beaumarchais
Mr. Dunn
Mr. Reber
Brig. Gen. Balmer
Brig. Gen. Gerhart
Mr. Page
Mr. Merrill
Mr. Campbell

The Bulgarian Militia

Lieut. Col. Clementin: The next item is a Greek amendment to Article 9 of the Bulgarian treaty [C.P.(Gen)Doc. 1.J.21]. It is proposed that the personnel of the Bulgarian army should be limited to 35,000. The Military Committee thinks this amendment should be rejected. It does however propose a slight change in the wording of Article 9 to indicate that the Bulgarian land army would include “frontier and internal security troops”. If this change is adopted, the Committee thinks similar changes should be made in the Rumania, Hungarian and Finnish treaties.

M. Vyshinsky: I do not understand this amendment, because Bulgaria has no internal security troops. We agreed before to include frontier guards, but we made no mention of including the militia in the figure of ordinary troops in drafting any of the five treaties. There must be a misunderstanding. I never heard of any internal security forces in Bulgaria.

Mr. Jebb: If Bulgaria does have such forces, as it may have, then they should be mentioned as coming within the limitations on the personnel of the army.

M. Vyshinsky: In the Italian treaty we limited the army to 185,000 men including frontier guards. For Bulgaria we should take the figure of 55,000 including frontier guards. In the case of Italy we made special provision for the Carabinieri since such a corps exists. But no such internal security forces exist in Bulgaria, and there is no reason to mention them. The police are not part of the army.

Mr. Jebb: In that case we need not limit the Carabinieri in Italy. We could leave out the limitation and let them have as many as they like.

M. Vyshinsky: The Carabinieri are trained troops. We know that Italy has such troops. But we do not limit the Italian police.

Mr. Jebb: Bulgaria will have Carabinieri too unless we take care of it in this Article.

[Page 351]

M. Vyshinsky: We could do that if we wish to refer to something which does not exist but might sometime exist. We might debate whether the Greek army might have royal guards in the future.

Mr. Jebb: Greece is not yet a defeated country.

M. Vyshinsky: I was only using this illustration to express a general view.

Mr. Dunn: I understand that Bulgaria has just passed a law providing for a militia. The militia already exists according to my information.

M. Vyshinsky: It is a question of a police force.

Mr. Dunn: Article 9 says that: “The maintenance of land, sea and air armaments and fortifications will be closely restricted to meeting tasks of an internal character and local defense of frontiers”. The militia should be included; certainly it would not be created to undertake tasks other than of an internal character. Either the militia is included within the limit of 55,000 or else under Article 11 it is not to exist at all. It seems clear to me that the militia should be included in the limitation of the total strength of the army.

M. Vyshinsky: In the Soviet view all the treaties provide limitations for regular army troops. The question of police forces has not come up. These clauses have been discussed before by the military experts, by the Deputies and by the Foreign Ministers. We all agreed to the texts as they now stand. In the Rumanian treaty there is no mention of police but merely of troops. The same is true in the Bulgarian and Italian treaties. There is mention in the Italian treaty of the Carabinieri since such a force does exist. If we include police, however, we might as well include prison guards and all others who perform police functions. Do we have to discuss this question just because the Greeks thought up an amendment. I think the question of the police should be left aside.

Mr. Dunn: If the militia is not included in the total armed strength limited to 55,000, then under Article 11 it will be illegal for Bulgaria to have a militia with military training.

M. Vyshinsky: All police forces have a certain degree of military training. Our previous discussions concerned armed forces, not police. Article 9 is an agreed article. Is it now suggested that we go back on our decision?

Mr. Dunn: The question of the police forces is covered under Article 11. Bulgaria can have a police force so long as it is not given military training in any form. I understand that the present Bulgarian law creates a militia with military formations; that would be illegal under Article 11. I am not pressing for a change in Article 9, but if there is no disposition to mention the militia as included in the armed forces permitted under Article 9, then it is clear that any [Page 352] such militia with military formations would be illegal after the treaty goes into effect.

M. Vyshinsky: The question before us is whether to include in Article 9 this new reference to internal security forces. Since such forces do not exist in Bulgaria, the amendment cannot be accepted. Article 11 is clear. Bulgaria will accept the obligations under that Article. If there are any secret armies they will not be tolerated. But Article 11 has no connection with Article 9. I see no reason to amend either of them.

Mr. Dunn: I am not pressing for a change in Article 9 but I want it clearly understood that no militia would be possible under Article 11. The present Bulgarian militia established by law would be illegal when the treaty went into effect.

M. Vyshinsky: I cannot speak about that law now, but it is evident that if a Bulgarian law is in conflict with the treaty, that would have certain definite consequences. Article 11 is quite clear. Contingents not provided for in Article 9 cannot receive military training as defined in Annex 2.

Mr. Dunn: I think that all of us who sign this treaty will accept the obligation to see that the treaty is carried out.

M. Vyshinsky: There is no question about that. We have an Article which deals with the execution of the treaty. But there is no need to include a reference to internal security forces in Article 9.

Mr. Dunn: We did not raise this point. It was recommended to us by the Military Committee.

M. Vyshinsky: I think that the Military Committee was too hasty, and I suggest we do not accept its recommendation.

Mr. Dunn: I raise no objection to passing on to the next item. I think that this discussion has been helpful in grasping the issue in view of the fact the [that] the question might arise in the future. In the case of Bulgaria I think the question is before us now, and that we cannot ignore the existence of the law which has been passed establishing a militia.

M. Vyshinsky: We will speak about that when the time comes.

Mr. Dunn: I hope so.

M. Vyshinsky: Then we shall leave Article 9 in the form in which it appears in the draft treaty. (This was agreed.)

Lieut. Col. Clementin: The next item is a Greek amendment concerning the proportion of officers in the Bulgarian armed forces and concerning the instruction of reserve officers. The Greek Delegation proposed this same amendment for the Italian treaty. The Military Committee suggests that it be rejected.

M. Vyshinsky: Shall we endorse the Committee’s recommendation? (This was agreed.)

[Page 353]

Demilitarization of the Bulgarian-Greek Frontier

Lieut. Col. Clementin: There is a Greek proposal for the destruction and prohibition of certain fortifications on the Bulgarian side of the Greek-Bulgarian frontier [C.P.(Gen) Doc.1.J.21]. This proposal is similar to the articles in the Italian treaty dealing with the French-Italian and Yugoslav-Italian frontiers. In the Military Committee the Soviet representative held that this question had already been discussed and that the acceptance of the proposal would modify Article 9 which has already been adopted by the Council of Foreign Ministers. The U.S. representative believed this to be a new proposal which could be examined on the merits and supported by any Delegation. The U.K. and French representatives thought that the Deputies should decide whether it was to be considered as a new proposal or as an amendment to Article 9. The Committee asks instructions on this point.

Mr. Dunn: The American position is that this is a new question and should be dealt with as such.

M. Vyshinsky: Article 9 was first drafted without mention of fortifications. Then as a compromise, I believe that at the suggestion of the U.S. representative the word “fortifications” was added. We agreed on that text in the Council of Foreign Ministers. Now the same question is being raised again. The same proposal previously rejected is being put forward. It may be new to the Greek Delegation but it is not new to us. The Soviet Delegation is opposed to it in substance and also because it represents a modification of an agreed clause. The Greeks are attacking their neighbors and loudly accusing the latter of being aggressive. Bulgaria is not attacking anybody and has no reason or intention to do so. I see no basis for such a restriction as is being proposed. Bulgaria cannot be compared to Italy which is a large country. This amendment therefore cannot be accepted. We should not start the old arguments again; otherwise we should have to begin our whole discussion all over again.

Mr. Dunn: We never had a definite proposal along these lines. The general reference to fortifications in Article 9 is not enough to preclude the acceptance of any new definite proposal by an Allied state against an enemy country. I am merely stating our position. We are not willing to reject this proposal on the ground that it is included already in an agreed article.

Mr. Jebb: Our position is broadly similar to that of Mr. Dunn. The fact that Bulgaria is a small country has nothing to do with the case. In logic there is every reason to support the Greek proposal. Greece was attacked by Bulgaria just as Yugoslavia was attacked by Italy. Yugoslavia insists on a demilitarized zone. There is no reason [Page 354] why Greece should not do likewise. I think it must be admitted that this is a new proposal.

M. Vyshinsky: I maintain that in the Military Committee General Balmer made a suggestion concerning the destruction of Bulgarian fortifications. General Slavin tells me this. It was suggested at the time that provisions similar to those to be established on the French-Italian and Yugoslav-Italian frontiers be applied in the treaties with Bulgaria, Hungary, Eumania and Finland. These suggestions were not accepted. A compromise was made by the inclusion of the word “fortifications” in Article 9. Therefore the Greek amendment is not new and cannot be accepted. We have already agreed to a definite text. The Soviet Delegation cannot agree to proposals which change the substance of agreed articles. Therefore I ask my colleagues not to insist that this is a new proposal.

Mr. Dunn: I must insist that it is. This proposal was never discussed in connection with the Bulgarian treaty. Similar proposals were discussed for the Italian treaty because they were put forward by the French and Yugoslav governments. The Council of Foreign Ministers gave full consideration to the French and Yugoslav proposals and agreed to the language which appears in the draft treaty with Italy. In connection with the Bulgarian treaty we expect to treat this as a new proposal.

Mr. Jebb: I think the only thing to do is to put this question before the Foreign Ministers tomorrow. It is an important point on which we cannot get agreement here.

M. Vyshinsky: That is up to you. I think it is an amendment. Any other decision would be contrary to our agreement.

Mr. Jebb: According to our terms of reference any difference of opinion among us shall be put before the Ministers.

M. Vyshinsky: I see no reason for a difference of opinion. Article 9 is an agreed article. If there is no agreement on an amendment, the article must stand as agreed. I cannot take the initiative in referring it to the Ministers. Let us go on with the next question.

Further Consideration of the Military Committee’s Report

Lieut. Col. Clementin: There is a Belgian amendment to Article 12 of the Bulgarian treaty [C.P.(Gen) Doc.1.C.3]. It concerns atomic weapons. The Military Committee recommends that the same position be taken as for the Italian and Rumanian treaties. (This view was adopted.)

There is also a Greek amendment to Article 12 which concerns certain naval armament [C.P.(Gen) Doc.1.J.22]. The Naval Committee will make a report on this subject.

The next item is an Australian amendment to Article 14 [C.P.(Gen) Doc.1.B.35]. It concerns the disposition of excess war material [Page 355] by the Security Council of the United Nations. The Military Commission has already rejected this amendment for the Italian treaty. It is proposed that the same position be taken on this point for the other treaties. (This was agreed.)

There is also a Greek amendment to Article 14, similar to one proposed by the Greeks to the Italian treaty [C.P.(Gen) Doc.1.J.23]. It provides for restitution to Greece of Greek war material. The Deputies decided to oppose this amendment to the Italian treaty on the ground that the matter was taken care of by the Article on restitution and reparation. At a later meeting of the Military Committee the U.S., U.K. and French representatives thought that the Greek amendment should not be rejected entirely. The Committee thinks that the matter could be dealt with along the lines foreseen in Article 58 of the treaty with Italy and Article 14 of the treaty with Bulgaria. The U.S. representative proposed that mention might be made in the treaty of such disposition of excess war material. The Soviet representative believed it unnecessary. The Military Committee now submits to the Deputies the proposal that a statement be made in the Military Commission that any Allied state can apply to the Allied Powers at whose disposal the war material is placed according to the treaty provisions, making a request for such material. The Military Committee asks for the guidance of the Deputies.

M. Vyshinisky: The Soviet representative on the Military Committee says that this is not what happened. The Committee decided not to support any proposal.

Lieut. Col. Clementin: It is true that after the matter was referred to the Deputies the first time and instructions were received from them, it was decided to reject the Greek amendment to the Italian treaty. All that is proposed now is that a declaration be made in the Military Committee that if any Allied state considers that it has a right to surplus war material, then its request shall be taken into consideration by the Four Allied Powers in the case of the Italian treaty and the Three Powers in the case of the Balkan treaties.

Mr. Jebb: I think it is only right and appropriate that the powers which dispose of the surplus equipment should take into account the claims of other Allies.

M. Vyshinsky: There are two questions before us, the Greek amendment and the proposed declaration. The Military Committee has already decided to oppose the Greek amendment, as we agreed in the case of the Italian treaty. Is it clear that we reject this amendment? On the subject of the declaration, it is not clear to me where, how, and by whom it should be made. We might discuss it later when we have a text before us.

[Page 356]

Mr. Dunn: I think we should consider both points together.

M. Vyshinsky: Why? We have the Greek amendment before us, and the Military Committee favors its rejection. We rejected it in the case of the Italian treaty. As for the declaration, we can consider that when the matter is clarified.

M. Couve de Murville: This question will come up tomorrow in connection with the Italian treaty. We might ask our experts to draft a declaration now to be made tomorrow to the Military Commission. I understand that we will oppose the Greek amendment in the Commission.

Mr. Dunn: That is a good suggestion. The Military Committee, incidentally, has not recommended the rejection of the Greek amendment but has merely asked the advice of the Deputies.

M. Couve de Murville: Yes, but on Saturday we agreed to vote against a similar amendment to the Italian treaty.

Mr. Dunn: We have some new considerations and suggestions and I think they should all be considered together.

M. Vyshinsky: The Military Committee has reported that it thinks the Greek amendment should be opposed in the Commission. I suggest that we decide accordingly. As for the declaration, I have no objection to having the experts try to prepare a text. Let us first definitely reject the Greek amendment.

Mr. Dunn: I should like to talk about the declaration first.

M. Vyshinsky: Why? We rejected the amendment to the Italian treaty on Saturday. Why not reject the same amendment to the Bulgarian treaty today.

Mr. Dunn: Here we have a reasonable request by an Ally for surplus war material. I do not think that the three Allied Powers concerned will wish to take for themselves any war material which was Greek. I do not see why there can be any objection to providing in the treaty that claims of Allies other than the Four Powers, or Three Powers, to this war material will be considered.

M. Couve de Murville: The idea was not to put it in the treaty but to have the representatives of the Allied Powers concerned make a declaration in the Military Commission that in the disposal of war material taken from Italy and from Bulgaria they would take into account the claims of other Allied states to war material taken from them.

Mr. Jebb: I suggest our experts try to work out a formula now.

M. Vyshinsky: I consider that inadvisable. If we cannot agree to reject the Greek amendment I suggest we defer the question and let the military experts report tomorrow. I cannot understand why my colleagues will not agree to oppose the Greek amendment.

[Page 357]

M. Couve de Murville: We must settle this since the question comes before the Military Commission tomorrow.

M. Vyshinsky: Let us settle it then. We took a decision in connection with Italy on Saturday. We can do the same for Bulgaria.

Mr. Dunn: The declaration would apply to both Italy and Bulgaria. I do not see why any of the Four Powers would be unwilling to make a declaration that they would consider the claims of the rightful owners of such war material.

M. Vyshinsky: To whom would the declaration be made? I should like an explanation.

Mr. Dunn: We should prefer to see the declaration embodied in the treaty.

M. Vyshinsky: I oppose that categorically.

Mr. Dunn: There is no reason not to say that the claims of Allied countries to war material will be considered by the Four or Three Allied Powers concerned. Certainly we will not deny the right of other powers to material which was theirs.

M. Vyshinsky: Not if it belongs to them.

Mr. Jebb: If it does come up tomorrow, we can probably make a unilateral statement.

M. Vyshinisky: What kind of a statement?

Mr. Jebb: A statement to the effect that we would dispose of our share of the war material as we saw fit.

M. Vyshinisky: That is already in the treaty. Article 58 of the Italian treaty says that all Allied war material in excess of that allowed to Italy will be placed at the disposal of the Allied or Associated Power concerned according to the instructions to be given to Italy by the Allied or Associated Power concerned. We also have the Article on restitution, Article 65. What else do we need?

M. Couve de Murville: I do not think that this is the point in question. It is paragraph 1 of Article 58 which is concerned. Also I think that if a declaration is to be made, it is better to have an agreed declaration than a unilateral declaration.

Mr. Jebb: It would be better, but the question is whether an agreed declaration would be ready in time.

M. Vyshinsky: What would we declare? Paragraphs 1 and 2 of Article 58 deal with this question, paragraph 1 with the placing of war material at the disposal of the Four Powers, and paragraph 2 with the placing of war material at the disposal of the Allied and Associated Powers concerned. If it is British material, it will be given to the British authorities; if American material, to the American authorities for disposal. What else is necessary? Do you suggest adding something to Article 58?

[Page 358]

M. Couve de Murville: The French Delegation does not propose changing Article 58. I suggest that the Four Powers at whose disposal war material will be placed under paragraph 1 of Article 58 will not need or want this material. I think we could give part of it to the countries which need it such as Yugoslavia and Greece.

M. Vyshinsky: I understand paragraph 1 of Article 58 in the following way. Italian excess war material will be handed over to the Four Powers. The Four Powers will by mutual agreement dispose of it. If they decide to give part of it to the U.S. or to the U.S.S.R., either of those powers would be able to give it to any other state if it desired to do so.

M. Couve de Murville: That is my interpretation. I just thought that it could be explained that way to the Military Commission.

Mr. Dunn: Let us agree to have that explanation given to the Military Commission.

M. Vyshinsky: In what form?

Mr. Dunn: Somebody could make a speech. Lots of people here like to make speeches.

M. Couve de Murville: One of us could make a declaration to the Military Commission.

M. Vyshinsky: I am ready to authorize M. Couve de Murville.

M. Couve de Murville: I do not generally attend the meetings of the Commission.

Mr. Dunn: Let the French representative make the declaration.

M. Vyshinsky: All right. Let him prepare a text now.

M. Couve de Murville: I will ask Lieut. Col. Clementin to go into the next room and prepare a text. (Exit Lieut. Col. Clementin.)

(At a later point in the meeting Lieut. Col. Clementin presented to the Commission a draft declaration which the French representative would make on the authorization of the Four Powers responsible for drafting the Italian treaty. The declaration would read as follows:

“War material in excess of that permitted to Italy under the articles of the peace treaty will be placed at the disposal of the U.S.S.R., U.K., U.S. and French governments under paragraph 1 of Article 58. In the disposal of this material by joint decision of the Four Powers, the latter will take into consideration the claims of other Allied and Associated Powers, especially those from which war material had been taken by Italy.”)

M. Vyshinsky: I have no objection to that, but I would like to have a text.

Mr. Dunn: I think there should be a reference to the fact that this declaration does not refer to surplus units of the Italian navy referred to in Article 48.

M. Couve de Murville: That is quite another question. Obviously it does not refer to that.

[Page 359]

M. Vyshinsky: Nevertheless I think it should be mentioned so that no wrong impression will be created. (It was agreed that the declaration should also mention that Article 48 was not affected by this statement. The Deputies then agreed to reject the Greek amendment subject to the making of the above declaration in the Military Commission.)26

  1. The declaration was presented to the 10th Meeting of the Military Commission, September 4, by General Catroux (France); for the United States Delegation Journal account of that meeting, which includes the text of the declaration as actually delivered, see p. 360.