741.5 MAP/1–1850: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom

top secret
no distribution

233. Separate cable reporting progress negots MDAP bilateral with Brit. Prior to commencement negots Brit Emb advised Dept it was asked to request US statement of additional military facilities which US anticipated asking Brit to provide together with estimate of their cost to Brit. Dept reps expressed view impracticable and not useful to specify existing arrangements under which Brit furnish facilities of various kinds to US forces. Further pointed out that preparation of statement could not be interpreted as commitment that other requests might not be made, particularly under NAT planning. Dept reps undertook to prepare statement of facilities which Defense Dept now has in mind and which might involve significant expenses by Brit. Discussion with Defense Dept brought out difficulty involved since continuous combined planning and discussion involves many proposals of varying degrees of firmness. In many cases result is joint agreement on how respective services carry on their own work so as to fit into combined plans.

Dept has discussed informally with Brit Emb draft memo which recites above facts and contains (A) construction projects involving significant expenditures, (B) general statement re use by US forces of existing Brit facilities and (C) general statement re future development of facilities. (A) includes (1) improvement four air fields with which Emb fully familiar, (2) repairs and improvements at Burton wood which have been paid by Brit, (3) air field at Abu Sueir where RAF is undertaking improvements and only outstanding request is one made by RAF that USAF provide certain equipment, and (4) communications facility in Middle East to be erected with US funds but which might involve request that Brit acquire certain land. (B) generally refers to informal arrangements under which US forces have use of certain Brit facilities the expense being largely of administrative or housekeeping nature. Such use of facilities may be extended as result of combined defense planning. (C) contains general statement re stockpiling supplies and equipment and inter-service arrangements for development of communications, port and logistic facilities. Memo classified Top Secret and for strictly limited distribution.1

Brit Emb considering this document and may conclude it too elaborate and that all Brit Govt wishes is statement of future substantial construction expenditures, which appears to be only four air fields. [Page 1608] Brit Emb feels most important aspect is that of presentation to Brit Govt. Dept has stressed point that request for facilities are not counterpart of MDAP aid and that such requests and arrangements grow out of well-established combined planning and would exist in absence of NAT and MDAP.

Above for your info only.

  1. Not found in Department of State files.