865.00/6–847: Telegram

The Ambassador in Italy (Dunn) to the Secretary of State


1455. While it may be a little early to judge (already 40 deputies are inscribed for interpellations following the new government’s statement scheduled for today) there is some justification in expecting the new De Gasperi Government to admit the critical economic facts of Italy, however unpleasant, and to make genuine efforts to adopt and carry out its program accordingly. The bullish reaction of the lira (785 May 13 when Cabinet resigned 725 June 5) since announcement of the new Cabinet is perhaps symptomatic of restrained providence [confidence] and hope.

The participation of Einaudi1 as Vice Premier and Minister of the Budget over Finance and Treasury; the constitution of a consultative economic planning body (a “brain trust” according to Il Globo) the increasing realism of CIR studies of Italian exchange balance and Italian needs revealed in our current talks on relief, suggest a conscious striving to develop internal measures which inspire confidence among groups, and in countries (i.e. the US) whose contribution to rehabilitation is essential.

In this light, the Secretary’s Harvard address2 is, as concerns Italy, most happy as to both substance and timing. It is what is needed to rally the Cabinet and the majority of the country to support unpleasant restrictions and sacrifices against opposition of special interests. The next few days should prove whether this is indeed the real start up and forward.

  1. Luigi Einaudi, governor of the Bank of Italy, January 1945–May 1948; later president of the Republic, 1948–1955.
  2. For text of Secretary Marshall’s address of June 5, see p. 237.