840.811/6–1648: Telegram

The Chargé in Yugoslavia (Reams) to the Secretary of State

secret   us urgent

733. Today at 4:30 Foreign Office called and asked me to come and see Simich1 at 5:30. Simich read to me a personal statement which he had written out in hand. My notes on this statement are: “The information given on the part of Soviet Government in its note to your government re technical difficulties for organizing Danubian conference on July 30 in Belgrade was based on my personal opinions and my government does not share them. Consequently my government asks that you inform US Government that all measures are taken without any obstacles whatsoever to make certain Danubian conference is held on July 30 in Belgrade.”

It seems an odd note that at luncheon June 14 Simich informed me all arrangements had been made for holding conference in Belgrade including the setting aside of suitable space in air conditioned school. His statement to me that day hardly seems compatible with the statement given to me this afternoon. For the moment I am unable to add any conjecture as to the actual course of events on this matter.2

[Page 616]

The British Ambassador3 was also called in this afternoon and presumably will receive the same information.

Sent Department 733; repeated Rome for Cannon 119. Department pass Moscow 141.

  1. Stanoje Simich, Foreign Minister of Yugoslavia.
  2. Two days later in telegram 746, the Chargé in Yugoslavia, R. Borden Reams, felt that the Yugoslav response constituted the first direct and irrevocable challenge that any satellite country had made to the supreme authority of the Communist leaders in the Kremlin. He believed that the possible breach between the Communists in Yugoslavia and the Soviet Union was the first time that the Soviet Union had been faced with a Communist government on the outside which was willing to risk an independent or even contrary course of action. (The full text of this telegram is printed p. 1073). For documentation on the interest of the United States in the dispute between Yugoslavia and the Cominform (Communist Information Bureau), see pp. 1054 ff.
  3. Sir Charles Brinsley Pemberton Peake.