760H.75/11–1449: Telegram

The Chargé in Yugoslavia ( Reams ) to the Secretary of State

secret

1178. Although present Albanian regime anathema Yugoslavs and Yugoslav Government still deeply interested Albania, do not believe denunciation Treaty of Friendship with Albania (Embtel 1175, November [Page 325] 141) presages Yugoslav military or other direct intervention foreseeable future. However, to many in Hoxha Government aware of increasing west pressure before UN and in economic field (intel October 24 2 a. m.2) faced with growing Cominform difficulties in supplying isolated outpost and noting increased internal dissatisfaction, established from within Communist Party Albania of regime favorable to Tito may well seem preferable to west intervention, to Soviet yoke, or to civil war. Such bloodless coup Tirana undoubtedly integral part Yugoslav policy Albania but probably not for some time to come.

Although frequent Yugoslav Government insistence to western diplomats against western intervention Albania primarily Yugoslav desire avoid crisis that area now (Yugoslav fear on surface may be Greek assault southern Albania and consequent involvement Yugoslavia, but we wonder if they may not actually be more concerned activity by Western powers) it also may mean Yugoslavs wish reinforce claim basic interests Albania.

Yugoslavs have alleged the precipitate and numerous Albanian provocations against Yugoslavs to be part of Cominform strategy goad Yugoslav Government to overt action but Yugoslavs have maintained outward calm face growing Soviet desperation. With setback Yugoslavia and Greece Soviet position Albania has become increasingly tenuous and Yugoslavs stand to gain in time element alone. If Soviet support Albania weakens pro-Tito regime Albania foregone conclusion unless for reasons not apparent this Embassy we desire take effective counter-action. Given Albania Yugoslav collaboration, we can then expect Albania approach to west similar to that Yugoslav Government over past years.

Sent Department 1178, repeated Rome 124, Moscow 165. Dept pass Moscow.

Reams
  1. Not printed, but see footnote 2 to telegram 928, September 15, from Belgrade, p. 316. On November 12, the Yugoslav Ministry of Foreign Affairs delivered to the Albanian Legation in Belgrade a note denouncing the Treaty of Friendship and Mutual Aid between Yugoslavia and Albania of July 9, 1946. For an extensive extract from the Yugoslav note of November 12, see Margaret Carlyle, Editor, Documents on International Affairs 1949–1950, issued under the auspices of the Royal Institute of International Affairs (London, New York, Toronto: Oxford University Press, 1953), pp. 489–495.
  2. Not printed.