862.00/1–649: Telegram

The United States Political Adviser for Germany (Murphy) to the Acting Secretary of State


14. Council of Elders of Parliamentary Council announced yesterday that realizing overall political situation demands completion basic law, all political parties will cooperate fully to that end. This action ends possibility major open conflict between SPD and CDU on issue of Adenauer (Frankfurt’s 341, December 212). Contrary to some press reports, indications now are that Ruhr question also will not provoke serious SPDCDU conflict. Main committee expected to discuss Ruhr at session tomorrow, but merely for the record.

Apparently leaders of principal parties at Bonn have reached decision major effort should be made to complete basic law earliest possible date. SPD Party conference in Hanover January 4 reportedly discussed pros and cons of raising issue lack of confidence in Adenauer as President Parliamentary Council, and decided against it. Communist effort promoted [to promote?] discord and disrupt work of council on issue Adenauer and Ruhr evidently having opposite effect.

Sent Department, repeated Berlin 2, London 2, Paris 2.

  1. Not printed; in it Murphy reported that the SPD had made public a sharply worded letter to Adenauer which attacked his motives and good faith in raising the questions of financial, cultural, and legislative powers at meetings with the Military Governors on December 16 and 17, 1948. Adenauer had replied in a press interview defending his activities as clarifying the problems of the Parliamentary Council. Murphy stated that even if this incident did not develop further, the widening breach between the SPD and CDU seriously threatened the work of the Parliamentary Council since the provisional constitution, to be effective, would need the support of a substantial majority of the delegates and the German people. (862.00/12–2149)