740.00119 Control (Germany)/6–2448: Telegram

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


3360. In conversations today De Leusse, chief of Central European Division, Foreign Office, expressed himself as very uneasy about the measures which might result from the Warsaw Conference.1 He stated that he had no knowledge of the nature of these measures nor did he expect any in advance of their announcement by the Soviets but he expected that decisions would be reached rapidly and would be of the gravest importance in relation to the situation in Berlin.

He stated that France was committed to follow the lead of US and the UK at Berlin, that he personally believed that a serious error had been committed by the Western powers when the Berlin crisis first arose [Page 917] by overstressing the importance of remaining in Berlin and announcing that we would remain there at all costs. He considered that Berlin was not in fact any more quadripartite than Western Germany in which quadripartite control had long since been abandoned.

The physical situation of Berlin was such that its effective incorporation into the Soviet Zone would be a comparatively easy matter, while the difficulties which confronted the Western powers not only In feeding but in maintaining the economic life of the western sections of the city would be almost insuperable in the face of an aggressive Soviet action. In such case the prestige of the Western powers in Berlin could only decline whether they maintain their military and governmental forces in Berlin, or not.2

Sent Department 3360; repeated London 579, Berlin 366.

  1. The reference here is to the Conference of the Foreign Ministers of the Soviet Union, Albania, Bulgaria, Czechoslovakia, Yugoslavia, Poland, Romania, and Hungary, held in Warsaw, June 23 and 24; see the editorial note, p. 370.
  2. In telegram 3372, June 25, from Paris, not printed, Ambassador Caffery reported having been told by Foreign Minister Bidault that he was not very happy about the Berlin situation, but that he would go along with the United States (862.515/6–2548).