850.33/7–850: Circular telegram

The Secretary of State to Certain Diplomatic Offices 1

top secret

Attn Officer in Charge.

Brit Emb informed us yesterday that Brit Amb, Paris, had assured Fr that although Brit cld not participate on basis present working papers they continued wish Schuman Plan success as Attlee stated in Commons. Official Brit position, we have been informed, is to do nothing to discourage participation other countries particularly Benelux and to withhold any alternative proposals at this time.
However, although we are not aware of any official lobbying on part of Brit to water down Plan or to dissuade others from joining, we are disturbed by possibility that recent remarks by important Brit officials, particularly Strachey speech,2 coupled with Brit statement to Fr that cld not join on basis present proposals will cause Eur countries slacken their efforts reach agreement on treaty embodying essentials of Schuman concept.
Accordingly, you shld seek to counteract possible adverse effects of developments described above by making apparent to officials of govt to which you accredited very favorable US reception to bold approach Fr have outlined as basis for discussion and our hope that, even though Brit may not be able join, this fact will not prevent other countries from going forward with implementation in keeping with boldness of original conception. As you know, US attaches greatest importance Schuman principles as contribution Fr-Ger rapprochement.
ECA concurs.
  1. Sent to London, Paris, The Hague, Brussels, Borne, Luxembourg, and HICOG, Frankfort.
  2. Speech by Evelyn John Strachey, British Secretary of State for War, on July 1 at Colchester, in which he attributed the Schuman Plan to “great capitalist interests in Europe” and said “Labor had only to oppose this plot in order to defeat it.” Telegraphic comment on this speech from Bruce and Douglas is in Department of State file 850.33/7–850.