740.0011 EW (Peace)/9–2647: Telegram

The Minister in Austria (Erhardt) to the Secretary of State


917. From Erhardt and Ginsburg. ReDeptel 751, September 20.35

Do not believe termination ATC negotiations will have any substantial effect Austrian public opinion or local political situation. Govt circles and press have long discounted possibility any substantial agreement ATC.
In addition USDel has sought prepare ground for delay in settlement emphasizing wide current differences in Soviet and US attitudes and practical consequences to Austria of Soviet position.
Do not believe termination will have any effect on Gruber’s attitude toward possible bilateral negotiations. In our presence Gruber reiterated position Friday 19 September that under existing circumstances bilateral negotiation in interim period undesirable and should be reserved for London if stalemate there appears probable.36
Substance Vienna statement if any for termination ATC will be sent Dept pursuant request. USDel suggest that proposed Dept statement be reviewed here for reasons indicated Deptel. Since Dodge in US, consideration now being given having statement made by him under Dept auspices. Understand Rendel proposes follow comparable course in London.
Suggestions requested last sentence Deptel will be sent later.
  1. Not printed; it asked Erhardt for his opinion regarding the “effect on Austrian public opinion and political situation of termination of ATC negotiations.” (740.0011 EW (Peace)/9–1547)
  2. On September 29, Austrian Minister Kleinwaechter called on Francis Williamson of the Division of Central European Affairs and stated that since his return from his recent trip to Vienna he had received a communication from Foreign Minister Gruber discussing the possibility of a direct Austrian approach to the Soviet authorities prior to the forthcoming meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers. Gruber’s desire to conclude a bilateral settlement with the U.S.S.R. was based on the apparent failure of the Austrian Treaty Commission to reach an agreement and the consensus in Vienna that no Austrian Treaty would be forthcoming at the Council of Foreign Ministers meeting. (740.0011 EW (Peace)/9–2647)