Minutes of the Sixth Meeting of the United States–United Kingdom–Canada Security Conversations, Held at Washington, April 1, 1948
Present were the conferees of the fifth meeting. Mr. Hickerson called the meeting to order at 1545; adjourned it at 1730.
A new draft of the position paper under discussion was introduced by Hickerson and examined in detail. An additional paragraph had been added, delineating the area to be covered by the agreement. It was agreed that this question would require further work at a later [Page 72] date. Other alterations in the paper proceeded from points raised at the previous meeting.
It was agreed that no further meetings were necessary.
The State Department now has a position paper1 respecting the formation of regional security arrangement in the North Atlantic Area. The paper appears to be, and will be regarded as, a purely American paper. Accomplishing the objectives of the paper will require:
- Approval first by Mr. Lovett and thereafter by Mr. Marshall.
- Concurrently, introduction of the paper into the NSC, which will probably be done shortly by Mr. Butler (The paper as now written might well be improved through subjection to NSC staff appraisal.
- Approval by Mr. Forrestal, or by the top NSC, and thereafter by the President.
- The concurrence of a few Congressional leaders, including Senator Vandenberg.2
- Thereafter, implementation of the steps outlined in the paper itself.
Hickerson was careful to impress Jebb with the idea that the paper as it now stands represents only a concept of what is desired at the working level, and that British expectations should be based on nothing more than this.
It was generally agreed that a treaty should be accomplished and as soon as possible, the optimum possibility being that it might be accomplished prior to the end of the current session of Congress. This would have much greater political effect than a mere declaration of intent, no matter how strongly worded for Presidential delivery.