865.014/8–1848: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom

top secret
us urgent

3303. Further replies urtels 3715 Aug 16 and 3753 Aug 181 and instructions on related matters follow:

With respect to Eritrea US Deputy should continue support postponement decision on northern Eritrea and cession southern Eritrea to Ethiopia. French proposal cede only Danakil Coast to Ethiopia should not be accepted since it would give Ethiopia only least desirable desert coast lands and leave large Ethiopian population outside that country. US Deputy should urge French privately to accept partition boundary proposed by US (Deptel 3169 Aug 10)2 as basis on which Deputies might agree cede southern part Eritrea to Ethiopia and postpone decision on Northern part. You may inform Brit privately that [Page 942] US can make no further commitments (urtel 3716 Aug 16)3 at this time with regard to position it may take on Eritrea in future.
You should continue support Brit trusteeship Cyrenaica and postponement rest of Libya (Embtels 37433 and 3753 Aug 18). In view apparently wavering French views on Libya we see no advantage supporting at this time their claim Fezzan for which in any event they do not seem able to make strong case. Obviously question of Libya will be referred to GA and possibility exists French may then consider they must support Brit for Cyrenaica even without Fezzan as quid pro quo. If it turns out such is not case we can always switch later to support French claim. You might ask Massigli whether French would insist on Fezzan if final disposition Tripolitania were to be Italian trusteeship. If reply negative you should point out that postponement Tripolitania and Fezzan does not preclude decision favorable to France if disposition Tripolitania is other than Italian trusteeship.
It might be advisable exchange views with Brit on above. Also ask what they envisage as fate Tripolitania in view (1) their opposition Italian and multi power trusteeship (2) US refusal accept trusteeship (3) their statement 40th meeting DepItcol that “Brit have no territorial claim on Tripolitania”. Does this statement mean Brit would no longer consider trusteeship over united Libya if circumstances made it possible?

  1. Neither printed.
  2. Not printed; the partition boundary in the U.S. proposal ran from the Gulf of Zula to the northern borders of Achele Guzai and Serai provinces and then to the Ethiopian frontier (865.014/8–1048).
  3. Not printed.
  4. Not printed.