The United States High Commissioner for Germany (McCloy) to the Secretary of State
4021. Following is summary of discussion at meeting between the Council of Allied High Commission and Federal Chancellor Adenauer held at Bonn–Petersberg on Tuesday 15 November, 1949.2
This meeting was called at Adenauer’s request in order to prepare him for a Bundestag debate this date “on the question of dismantling and other problems of foreign policy which the Social Democrats had asked for.” (See Bonn 38.3) Adenauer wished to be informed of results of Paris Conference in order to inform Bundestag accordingly.
1. General Robertson, as Chairman, in reviewing decisions of Paris Conference, made the following points:
- That all points made at this meeting would be discussed in greater detail at subsequent meeting;
- That the allied program must be considered in its entirety. Rejection of certain basic items by federal representative would be construed as rejection of entire program;
- That there will be no amendment of the occupation statute before the date specified in that document. Federal Republic attitude in this period will determine not only distance which the Allies are prepared to go in the interim period but nature of amendment of the occupation statute at a later date;
- That “the way has been prepared” for the admission of Germany in the Council of Europe as an associate member;
- That the Ministers agreed Federal Republic should participate in a number of international organizations; that the Council would employ the agreed report of a working party given by the Ministers to the Council for guidance (this report deals with certain of the constitutional [Page 315] questions involved) but, that as a general principle each case would be considered on its merits;
That the termination of a state of war was discussed at Paris hut no definitive decision was reached due only to legal and constitutional questions involved, and not to questions of principle;
. . . . . . .
- That the Ministers agreed Federal Republic could establish certain representations abroad. A bureau which could plan, coordinate and operate consular and trade offices abroad and for German participation in international conferences is therefore in order;
- That the Ministers discussed Federal Republic and allied attitude toward new German democratic republic in Eastern zone.
Robertson again stressed that Allied Governments are making a very generous contribution and hoped that this program would be properly received and not serve as an “invitation to further requests.”
2. Robertson indicated Ministers had welcomed Adenauer’s letter (forwarded Paris 19 November, 19494) in which Adenauer stated inter alia, his agreement to German participation in IAR and close cooperation with the Military Security Board. In addition to these pledges, however, he pointed out that the Allies attached great importance to decartelization and implementation of Law No. 75 and hoped Federal Republic would cooperate in this field as well.
3. At this point I stressed:
- That German attitude would determine the pace and vigor of the implementation of these policies by the Allies;
- That by these decisions the Allies do not mean to increase the existing capacity of economic potential but at the same time I pointed out that Allied decisions are not eternal in their effect; any increase in potential or production would be considered on its merits and depend upon the course of events;
- That the Ministers hoped that there would be a certain liberalization of view towards questions of civil liberties and the authoritarian point of view which had been manifest even in pre-Hitler German administration; this problem was an important element in the search for security as an evident trend toward democratic development would create “the peace of mind required in Western Europe.”
. . . . . . .
6. Adenauer thanked the Council for “exposing this new trend of thought” and expressed the view that although the SPD was attacking his policy (particularly his views which stress necessity for understanding between France and Germany) four-fifths of the German people shared his view. Adenauer proposed that in his Bundestag statement this afternoon he should:
- Remain silent with respect to the problem of German membership in the Council of Europe lest a full discussion of the admission of the Saar would ensue;
- Make available his two letters to HICOM on dismantling and security;5
- State that his discussion today did not take an unfavorable course (at the end of the meeting he indicated his statement would be more positive in character);
- State that the further course of Allied policy would depend on Federal Republic attitudes, particularly with respect to the IAR and the MSB at this point, however, Adenauer queried the part of the Ruhr statute in Article 31 dealing with accession, which provides “…to assumption of responsibilities of the German Federal Government under the agreement and such other provisions as may be agreed by the signatory governments.” He felt that the Bundestag would not be willing to write such a “blank check.”
The Council agreed, after considerable discussion:
- That Article 31 (and as a result of discussion after the meeting, Article 9) would be examined by HICOM but that in their opinion Article 31 did not constitute in any way a “blank check.”
- That Adenauer must make his own decision with respect to whether or not (a) it is wise to raise the question of German membership in the Council of Europe in the Bundestag at this time; (b) Bundestag must vote on accession; (c) Federal Republic should take initiative or await invitation.
. . . . . . .
9. Adenauer stated that he felt very hopeful about the debate in the Bundestag on the basis of the information which had been communicated to him and he took no pains to conceal his satisfaction with the entire meeting.
10. Finally the Council agreed that there would be a series of meetings with Adenauer at which time further disclosures of the decisions of the Paris Conference could be made and discussions continued. The next meeting with Chancellor Adenauer will take place on Thursday, 17 November at 1600 hours after the Council meeting scheduled at 10:30.
Sent Department 4021, repeated London 256, Paris 301.