Memorandum of Conversation, by the Secretary of State1

top secret

Subject: Conversations with Mr. Bevin on Spain

Participants: Mr. Bevin
Sir Oliver Franks
Sir Gladwyn Jebb
Mr. Barclay
Mr. Acheson
Ambassador Jessup
Mr. Thompson
Mr. Achilles
Mr. Unger
Mr. Satterthwaite

In opening the discussion on Spain, Bevin said that the British wanted to let sleeping dogs lie. He had not favored recalling the Ambassadors, but having done so he did not feel we should change. Such [Page 759] a step would be received very badly in England. He noted that when inclusion of Spain under the ERP was discussed in Congress, there had been immediate adverse repercussions in England.

I said we agreed entirely on not raising the question in the assembly. If it were raised, we might favor a resolution which, while reaffirming condemnation of the undemocratic character of the Franco Government, would permit the return of Ambassadors to Madrid on the basis that their withdrawal has led to widespread confusion of public opinion and has disregarded the principle that the exchange of Ambassadors with a government does not imply any judgement on the domestic policy of that government.

  1. The memorandum was prepared by Livingston L. Satterthwaite, Chief of the Division of British Commonwealth Affairs.