851.00/1–2746: Telegram

The Ambassador in France ( Caffery ) to the Secretary of State


434. Léon Blum and Vincent Auriol wanted to know last night what I thought of Gouin’s letter (mytel No. 430, January 2612). I replied, “The letter is excellent, but will you be able to change the words into acts”. They both replied, “At least we will make a very serious effort to do so”. I said, “What about the Communist[s] and the MRP”. They replied, “In the end they both said they would go along with us”.

It was obvious that Blum and Auriol both felt that the Socialists have come out of all this very well: Gouin in the Presidency, Socialist Ministers in various key posts and Auriol probably to be elected President of the Assembly. Also there was an intimation that they were glad De Gaulle is out of the government. However, this is coupled with the knowledge that they have taken on a very heavy responsibility and that if they fail it is “curtains” for them.

Repeated to London as 85.

  1. Not printed (851.00/1–2646); it summarized the letter of January 25 by M. Gouin referred to in the final paragraph of telegram 432 from Paris, January 27, supra.