740.00119 Control (Germany)/11–1748: Telegram

The Chargé in the United Kingdom (Holmes) to the Acting Secretary of State


4909. Ruhrto 8. 1. Fourth plenary1 completed division of draft agreements (essentially using US draft2 as basis) into those requiring plenary discussion and those which could be handled by drafting sub-committee. Subjects requiring plenary discussion include (1) preamble, (2) definition control period, (3) definition of steel, (4) designation German representative and German vote, (5) accession German Government, (6) beginning of operations, (7) form of organization, (8) languages, (9) allocation functions, (10) trade practices, (11) protection foreign interests, (12) implementation, (13) collection of information, (14) default, (15) control of management, (16) accession other governments, (17) entry into force, (18) duration, (19) amendment and termination.

2. A. Re (1) French desire maintain Annex C3 language though accepting change to cover access by non-European countries. British seemed to agree with French USDel expressed view US redraft preferable, but did not press strongly. Matter referred to drafting committee.

B. Re (2) French and British preferred something along lines Annex C, 5 (D) but recognized difficulty in words “exercise supreme authority” in circumstances when exercise of certain functions delegated to German authorities even though residual power remained in occupation authorities. French suggested defining in terms of period when supreme authority “vested in” occupation powers. USDel felt US draft was ambiguous when applied to Article 8 Annex C, which is most potent clause to combat French demand for further management control. Accordingly USDel agreed to study French suggestion in light whole agreement. USDel did not raise question of US proposal that occupation powers should decide end of control period as provided US draft as time seemed inauspicious for raising question of how occupation powers acted, i.e., majority, unanimity or JEIA formula. USDel believes that this case where exactitude definition virtually impossible and somewhat ambiguous phrase as suggested by [Page 506] French and possible substitution of “ultimate” for “supreme” will probably be final result.

C. Re (3) discussion postponed until steel experts meet Friday p. m.

D. (4) and (5) passed over since US had not submitted draft on (4) following paragraph (D) ToRuhr 44 and (5) seemed to be linked.

E. Re (6) agreement in principle that organization of IAR should start without too much delay after effective date agreement. No conclusion re start of substantive functions, French pressing for definite time, e.g., 1 February, British suggesting two weeks after German referendum approving constitution for provisional German government, which they calculated would mean assuming functions about two weeks before coming into effect provisional government. US maintained position of immediately prior to provisional government. USDel has no intention to give on this issue.

F. Further discussions Wednesday re (8) French will oppose use German as language, but believe formula can be found via working language plus official translation route. Re (9) French and probably Benelux will press for this function re Aachen coal. Re (13) Benelux and French will press for right to examine witnesses and inspect outside Ruhr principally in connection with interests in Aachen coal. This may turn out to be useful point on which to concede, USDel having reserved position re interpretation of US draft in this matter. Re (15) anticipate French will introduce paper on this matter following Alphand statement.5 Re (18) French prefer strongly no mention of duration as now in present US draft. Not clear whether substantive matters really involved other points.

G. Public release of documents which is agreed here urged by Benelux and French in view difficulties of keeping secret upon submission to Parliaments for approval. USDel inclined to agree should be released after end this meeting, but that any explanatory statement should be cleared by all. Goal is completion meeting before end November.

H. Oppenheimer arrived 16 November from Berlin.

I. Informal meeting arranged morning 17 November, Alphand, Stevens and Jackson, which should clarify issues.

Sent Department 4909; repeated Berlin 594.

  1. The Fourth Plenary Meeting of the London Conference on the Ruhr was held on the afternoon of November 16. A copy of the U.S. Delegation minutes of the meeting (document USDel/Min/L/R/4, November 16) was transmitted to the Department of State as an enclosure to despatch 2310, November 23, from London, neither printed. (740.00119 Control (Germany)/11–2348)
  2. Document RC/3, November 12, p. 484.
  3. Annex C of the Report of the London Conference on Germany, June 1, p. 309, is the same as document TRI/16 (Final), May 26, p. 285.
  4. Department telegram 4310, November 15, p. 500.
  5. For the text of the Alphand statement made at the opening meeting of the Conference, see telegram 4830, Ruhrto 2, November 11, p. 476.