851.00/2–1448: Telegram

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


824. Gaullists and Communists here have this in common at present juncture: namely, that former believe and latter hope that “Mayer experience” is complete failure and is leading country to brink of disaster. Both groups consequently speak of necessity of changing government.

Communists are beginning to be greatly encouraged by perspective that “prices will continue to rise,” thus prolonging and even accentuating “climate of monetary insecurity” to which reference is made in latest communiqué issued by their political bureau on February 12. This “climate,” they feel sure, will create “political” as well as economic situation in near future which will greatly favor their endeavor to regain confidence of working class as latter’s “sole defender.” In this connection, they are now convinced that CGT (French Confederation of Labor)–FO (Force Ouvrière) will hardly be in position to continue to break [brake?] “workers’ demands” for higher wages.

Communists are now saying openly that since present government is “Fascist”, General De Gaulle’s arrival to power would only sharpen present “class struggle.” There seems to be little or no doubt in minds of competent observers here that Communist leadership here would now welcome a Gaullist government as catalyst in further disintegration and division of “bourgeois state” into two hostile camps.

While Communists realize that Gaullist government probably would endeavor to drive them underground and crush them, they consider that Gaullist movement is essentially reactionary and consequently General De Gaulle, regardless of his personal prestige, would not be able to unite all classes of nation and would not be able to solve fundamental problems that was case when he had all the cards. Unquestionably, [Page 626] endeavor to liquidate Communist movement in France would oblige French Communists to undergo another painful period of “illegality” but ensuing disorder would certainly benefit at least Kremlin’s short-range objectives; namely, rendering American aid to France as costly and as ineffective as possible.

Sent Department 824, repeated Moscow 45.