The Ambassador in France (Caffery) to the Secretary of State
2472. Mytel 2420, May 6th.1 As Department is aware it was my intention to have a conversation with De Gaulle and in many ways that would have been desirable at this juncture. However, as I have reported the President of the Council of Ministers asked me not to do so, and in the past few days it has been indicated to me that this opposition is stronger than ever. Schuman and other members this government are convinced that if such a conversation were known to the public (as it would be known) there would be immediate defections from the government’s supporters in the Assembly involving even the possible fall of the government.
It is obvious that for a variety of reasons we cannot run the risk of weakening the Schuman government at this time, but I and members of my staff will continue to make occasion to express our views to members of De Gaulle’s entourage.
- Not printed; it analyzed a report that General de Gaulle was becoming increasingly critical of the Schuman government for (a) its “irreparable abandonment of France’s security requirements [against Germany] without corresponding concessions by the US and UK”, and (b) its agreement to participate in the military organization of Brussels Pact signatories, which was “an abandonment of French military autonomy”. (851.00/5–648)↩