740.00119 Council/5–348: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom

us urgent

1599. Secdel 1568. Dept supports your position re limitation powers Central Government in fields public health, public welfare and police (urtels 1909, May 3,1 and 1883 May 1,2 para C). Believe desirable avoid sweeping and arbitrary prohibition these fields which might seriously handicap effectiveness central authority. Without departing from principle that primary police and internal security controls be vested in Laender, Dept considers carefully restricted police powers might be given Central Government in matters where enforcement own essential powers is involved. Consideration might perhaps be given to authorization of a small mobile gendarmerie under Central Government authority.3 With regard to possible danger that communists or other groups might gain control single Land, Central Government might also be empowered to call upon police forces of other Laender to deal with situation.

Above represents State and Army tentative views. Please keep us currently informed since Army is preparing special study this problem.

Appreciate validity your comments on proposal in Deptel 1551 Apr 30.4 Objective Dept had in mind seems to be fully met in alternative suggestion proposed urtel 1710 May 35

  1. Supra.
  2. Not printed, but see the editorial note, p. 213.
  3. Telegram 1611, May 5, to London, not printed, modified these instructions. The telegram stated that the Army considered any current attempt to organize a Gendarmerie to be premature, although it might be instituted at the time of, or in contemplation of, the withdrawal or reduction of occupation troops. The Army further considered that the size of the Gendarmerie and the Police should be strictly limited to such a size as might be agreed upon among the Allies. (740.00119 Council/5–348)
  4. Ante, p. 211.
  5. Ante, p. 219.