895.50 Recovery/7–249: Telegram

The Ambassador in Korea (Muccio) to the Secretary of State


817. Deptel 543, June 30 received Seoul this morning.1 Following my comment on Lodge amendment Korean Aid Bill.

ROK warmly welcomes amendment. President Rhee was speaking at opening meeting fourth special session National Assembly yesterday when he handed AP despatch reporting House Foreign Affairs Committee action. Interrupting prepared speech, he expressed pleasure re Lodge amendment. Also Prime Minister told me yesterday he pleased with Lodge amendment. In this connection, it has been abiding fear of Rhee all along UNCOK, with US supporting, would plump for coalition with North Korean regime in order bring about unification. Rhee is unalterably opposed such solution, hence his spontaneous reaction Lodge amendment.
It appears to me Lodge amendment is worded in such way as virtually to bar any step UNCOK might be able to take toward Korean unification and amalgamation Korean security forces. In a sense, therefore, Lodge amendment might be taken as flying in face of UNGA resolution on Korea. In this connection UNCOK has been unsuccessful in contacting North Korea and even if contact made, it, of course, unknown what if any solution could be worked out satisfactory [Page 1058] both South and North Korea. It obvious, however, with Lodge amendment in bill present form unification by merger or coalition would be out of question. Thus far UNCOK has not consulted me re Lodge amendment.
I assume Congress will insist in writing in Korea Aid Bill some proviso barring aid to a Communist regime as was done in case China.2 It my personal view such a general proviso is desirable in Korea Aid Bill. Such a general proviso might be somewhat as follows:

“Notwithstanding the provisions of any other law, the administrator shall immediately terminate aid under this act in the event of the establishment in the Republic of Korea of a Communist government or of a Communist-controlled government.” I feel amendment along foregoing lines would estop aid to any Communist government in ROK and would at same time be more in conformity with obligations we assumed under UNGA resolution.

In event Congress should insist on Lodge amendment in present form or its equivalent, I feel administration should go along if such action felt necessary obtain passage Korea Aid Bill.
  1. Telegram 543 not printed. It reported to the Embassy the incorporation into the Korean Aid Bill (see the editorial note under date of June 7, p. 1039) of an amendment introduced by Representative John Lodge of Connecticut providing for the termination of aid to the Republic of Korea in the event of the formation there of a coalition government including one or more Communists or members of the party in control of North Korea (895.50 Recovery/6–3049). The Korean Aid Bill to which the Lodge Amendment was attached failed of adoption but the language of the Lodge Amendment was incorporated in the Far Eastern Economic Assistance Act of February 14, 1950 (64 Stat. 5).
  2. 63 Stat. 55. Reference is to P.L. 47, 81st Cong., 1st Sess., approved April 19, 1949.