860F.00/2–2548: Telegram

The Chargé in France ( Bonbright ) to the Secretary of State

secret   urgent

1026. Bidault sent for British Ambassador and me at 10:30 tonight and expressed following views (mytel 1015, February 25):1

He repeated that démarche in Prague was useless in view of composition of Czechoslovak Government just announced.
He repeated that approach to UN was impractical at this time but that this aspect of the question would receive further study.
He proposed that he, Bevin and Secretary Marshall be free to make such statements as they ought consider the situation called for. (He had in mind that he ought be called on to speak on the Czechoslovak situation in the Assembly tomorrow morning, although he would avoid it if possible. Sir Oliver Harvey also indicated that Bevin ought similarly have to comment in the House of Commons; tomorrow afternoon.)
Finally he presented us with draft of proposed tripartite statement (text in translation follows in my next telegram).2

With regard to point 4, Bidault repeatedly stressed the need for speed if the statement were to have any validity, and it was suggested that it be released in the three capitals at 6 p. m. Paris time tomorrow, February 26.

[Page 738]

Sent Department 1026, repeated London 113, Tunis for Ambassador Caffery3 10.

  1. Not printed; it reported that the message contained in telegram 573, February 24, to Paris, p. 735, had been communicated to Foreign Minister Bidault (860F.00/2–2548).
  2. Telegram 1027, February 25, from Paris, not printed; the proposed joint declaration transmitted therein differed only slightly from the tripartite Declaration issued on February 26, the text of which is contained in the editorial note-infra.
  3. Ambassador Jefferson Caffery made an official visit to Tunisia from February 25 to March 1, 1948.