740.00119 Control (Germany)/1–1949: Telegram

The Chargé in the United Kingdom ( Holmes ) to the Acting Secretary of State

us urgent

241. 1. British delegate opened today’s session on occupation statute1 with statement to effect that we should retain maximum controls on important matters but since we wish Germans “in western club” we must not be unduly restrictive on relatively minor points. In reply French delegate expressed view that we should not give Germans too great a leeway in present uncertain circumstances and that it would be better to maintain controls and release them little by little than to give up too many at this time.

2. US suggested changes to British draft paragraph 2(b) including elimination sub-paragraph (iii) tentatively agreed to by UK and French delegates.

3. US draft paragraph 2(c) accepted by other delegates with reservation subject to addition words “and their industrial application” after words “scientific research” proposed by British delegate. Addition made on insistence French to meet their objection re omission [Page 15] words “industrial property rights.” Addition tentatively agreed to on ad referendum basis. In discussion French delegate made clear that he wished inclusion phrase “industrial property rights” to give occupation authorities power to control activities of “Patentamt”. French delegate indicated he desired an agreed minute to effect that paragraph 2(c) as now tentatively drawn up will give power to control “Patentamt”. US delegate reserved position on this point.2 At suggestion UK delegate it was agreed to renumber controls in international security enumerated in US draft in following manner: “(1) Prohibition and limitation of level of industry, (2) decartelization and decentralization, (3) disarmament, demilitarization and certain aspects of scientific research and (their industrial application), (4) movement of persons entering or leaving Germany.”

4. Consideration proposed US redraft paragraph 2(f) postponed pending clarification requested Embtel 209 January 173 (Deptel 209 January 18 and Berlin’s 42 January 194 not received until after meeting).

5. British delegate indicated that he would propose rewording paragraph 2(g) with view to liberalization its provisions.

6. It was agreed that paragraph 2(i) would be discussed later in connection with paragraph 13 (d) and general question of judicial competence of German authorities.

7. There was long and inconclusive discussion paragraph 4 and 5 in which British indicated that with certain changes they would probably accept US draft. French delegate introduced and strongly defended proposed redraft paragraph 5 which provided that Germans could legislate in fields covered paragraph 2(c) only with prior approval of military governors in each instance. British delegate suggested that possibly French objections US draft might be met by specifying certain vital fields reserved paragraph 2(c) as not susceptible to concurrent legislative action by German authorities and permitting Germans to legislate in other reserved fields in accordance with provisions of paragraph 4. French delegate indicated he might be able accept some such solution but would reserve position pending the submission of a tentative draft by US–UK drafting committee.

8. British and French delegates accepted US redraft paragraph 6.

[Page 16]

9. French delegate proposed following rewording paragraph 7 (c): “Legislation not referred to in (a) and (b) will be repealed by the military governors on request from the German authorities.” In support French advanced view that Germans should not be given right to repeal legislation of occupation authorities. UK and US reserved position pending receipt of military governors views as to whether new draft would increase burden on their legal divisions.5

10. In discussion paragraph 9 French delegate made it clear that French are not opposed to German representatives performing administrative consular functions. After reworking of proposed French draft second sentence, following wording was tentatively agreed to by all delegates: “They could also be called upon to perform such consular functions as may be agreed upon by the military governors.”

11. French delegate proposed insertion paragraph 19 first sentence after words “political life” words “of the press and radio”. US–UK delegates contended that ample power to control press and radio to protect occupation forces prestige and security are already provided paragraph 2(d) and will be taken care of in press ordinance now under discussion. French delegate admitted he had overlooked this ordinance and indicated that his objections might be overcome by recommendations to military governors urging early passage of ordinance.

12. There will be no plenary session until January 21 pending completion of work by drafting committee and receipt of further instructions from governments. We will, however, have informal meeting with British tomorrow with view to ironing out any differences between us and formulating tactics vis-à-vis French re paragraph 20, 21, and 236

Sent Department 241, repeated Berlin 44.

  1. The minutes of this session were transmitted in despatch 106, January 24, from London, not printed (740.00119 Control (Germany)/1–2449).
  2. In telegram 239, January 21, to London, not printed, the Department of State agreed to the inclusion of the words “and their industrial application”, but expressed its preference to avoid the inclusion of the agreed minute desired by the French. If such a minute was necessary to secure agreement on 2(c), it should not imply general control of the Patentamt, but merely control of research activities. (740.00119 Control (Germany)/l–1949)
  3. Ante, p. 9.
  4. Neither printed, but see footnote 5 to telegram 209, from London, January 17, p. 9.
  5. In telegram 235, January 21, to London, not printed, the Department of State indicated that it would prefer to let the Germans amend the legislation in paragraph 7(c), but that if the French insisted the Departments of the Army and State had no objection to the French proposal (740.00119 Control (Germany)/1–1949).
  6. At the informal meeting on January 20 the British agreed to accept the United States position on displaced persons, but expressed their strong feeling that German courts should have jurisdiction over both civil and criminal cases involving nationals of the occupation countries and their dependents. The British delegate reported that Bevin favored a high court with real judicial powers and a German member, but would forego the latter to obtain French agreement on the nature of the court. The United States proposal for appeal from high courts to governments came under attack since it would reduce the prestige of the courts in German eyes. (Telegram 245, January 20, from London, not printed, 740.00119 Control (Germany)/1–2049)