740.0011 EW (Peace)/2–2148: Telegram

The Minister in Romania (Schoenfeld) to the Secretary of State


209. I believe we here are now sufficiently advanced in our treaty work that we could greatly profit by a meeting of treaty personnel such as proposed by Ambassador Dunn (Rome’s 665, February 14)1 and that we might also make some contribution to such a meeting. I accordingly warmly welcome and endorse his suggestion.

Our observation of Rumanian Government’s ignorance of and indifference to its treaty obligations toward western nations convinces me that any substantial implementation is unlikely on basis negotiation and cooperative effort and that progress will largely depend on extent to which disputes provisions permit.

In our efforts to reach agreed claims procedure with Rumanian Government we have observed that while Oeriu SecGen of treaty commission2 and his assistants are courteous they are without power to act without the commission’s approval. As this body is composed of officials of cabinet rank who are preoccupied with internal politics, official visits abroad (Budapest, Moscow et cetera) and reception of neighboring government delegations, treaty implementation has had a low and even non-existent priority.

Mme. [Ana] Pauker who is president of commission appears entirely ignorant of the problems involved and unacquainted with the substance of any single case. Her principal FonOff assistants, Preoteasa3 SecGen and Mezincescu4 director political section, are uninformed and morally illiterate as well as stupid in the degree of their exposure of these characteristics.

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Efforts of other western governments to secure their rights under the treaty have been consistently unsuccessful. For example Auboyneau French Chargé tells me his attempts to arrange for restitution of 6,000 French railway cars, return of French shares in Colombia and Concordia oil companies turned over to Soviets, restitution of oil pipe line removed by Germans from France and installed here have been fruitless. He has also found Mme. Pauker uninformed and really only interested in politics. He mentioned for instance that his wife recently expressed appreciation to Mme. Pauker for attending a French reception despite her heavy duties at the FonOff and in Parliament and that Mme. Pauker had replied it was not the FonOff or Parliament that really took her time but “the party”. Auboyneau also said Mezincescu told him recently that the treaty was forced on Rumania and indicated no disposition to implement it. In discussing possible resort to disputes procedures Mezincescu said they could drag out such procedures for ten years.

In these circumstances treaty implementation promises to be largely a unilateral task involving careful preparation of the legal record, long delays and eventual reference of most issues to disputes machinery provided by treaty.

I believe opportunity to discuss experiences with other treaty missions would be of great practical value and would help us avoid pitfalls and inconsistencies and develop some constructive ideas.

Sent Department 209 repeated London 12, Moscow 21 (Dept please pass Rome 14, Budapest 35, Sofia 32.)

  1. Not printed. In it Ambassador James C. Dunn observed that while it appeared desirable to avoid establishing a formal or permanent council of Ambassadors to handle questions arising under the Italian peace treaty, he had found that meetings of the four Ambassadors (American, British, French, and Soviet) or their subordinates on an ad hoc basis to deal with problems which all agreed required joint consideration or action provided satisfactory machinery (740.0011 EW (Peace)/2–1448).
  2. In September 1947 the Romanian Government established an Inter-Departmental Commission for the Application of the Peace Treaty. Romanian Foreign Minister Ana Pauker was Chairman or President of the Commission and Dr. Simon Oeriu served as Secretary General and operating head.
  3. Grigore Preoteasa, Secretary General of the Romanian Foreign Ministry, became Minister Counselor of the Romanian Legation in Washington in early 1948; declared persona non grata in December 1948 (see memorandum from Hickerson to Lovett, December 9, 1948, p. 392.
  4. Eduard Mezincescu succeeded Preoteasa as Secretary General of the Romanian Foreign Ministry.