762.00/10–150: Telgram

The United States High Commissioner for Germany (McCloy) to the Acting Secretary of State

secret   niact

2722. PEPCO. ReDeptel 2476, September 29, repeated Berlin 116.1

Transmitted herein is proposed text letters to Chuikov by individual HICOG’s. In interest time and in hope all clearances can be obtained to allow releases October 6 (in order make important West German Saturday issues and Berlin Sunday press and permit solid week of [Page 661] plugging which deemed especially important if way found to encourage East Germans to register opposition to Soviet Zone elections). Hope Department can approve by morning October 4, that Bonn liaison can arrange for British and French similarly seek clearances, and that Embassies Paris, London and Moscow can initiate talks soonest under this time table.

Realize somewhat premature to draft proposed text in view non-receipt FedRep letter of transmission (scheduled for October 2), but are proceeding on assumption that (a) transmittal of Bundestag resolution to SCC will be requested as reported by Bonn and (b) FedRep request to transmit resolution to UN need not at this stage be involved in our letters to Chuikov (in fact we think it best not to mention or raise UN issue in letter to Chuikov and, assuming we find it possible comply with French and UK desires to forward resolution to UN, believe it preferable to do so somewhat later in order that UN can consider elections in light of event rather than indulge in polemics before elections. Hence, suggest that Bonn liaison inform French and British, as well as Germans, that we view issues as separate but will be prepared discuss matter in package later in week if they will seek clearances on letters to Chuikov and be prepared talk on October 4 or 5).

In event Bonn and Frankfort despatches forwarding Bundestag’s resolution and Chancellor’s statement not as yet available in Department, next numbered telegram (27232) transmits texts of both.

Believe proposed text, through somewhat longer than we had originally anticipated, hits most important psychological points which should be made at this time without necessarily reopening offer to discuss all-German elections with SCC. Perhaps few preliminary observations appropriate.

We think it important and desirable to introduce Chancellor’s statement. Similarly, we think it most important carry forward point that FedRep only German government entitled to speak for Germany: This intended beat Soviets to punch in event, following elections, they seek through peace treaty or otherwise to convert GDR into spokesman for German people. This point when coupled with our anti-separate peace language in letter of May 25, goes far in cutting ground from under Soviets on separate peace and all-German character of GDR following “legitimation” by elections. Reference to Hitler dictatorship, interjected in belief comparison Soviets with Hitler strikes psychological chord with Germans and hits Soviets in sensitive spot. We think it very important emphasize point that elections will contribute to more definite partition of Germany.

Following is text of proposed letters.

[Page 662]

“At the request of the government of the German FedRep, I transmit herewith the German text of a resolution of the Bundestag which was adopted September 14, 1950, by all political parties represented therein except the KPD (Communist Party of West Germany).

The resolution represents the preponderant will of the Bundestag and of the FedRep which, as you will have learned from the communiqué issued by the Foreign Ministers of the UK, France and the US at New York City on September 19, 1950, is considered by my government, pending the unification of Germany, as the only German government freely and legitimately constituted and, therefore, entitled to speak for Germany or to represent the German people in international affairs.

Since its promulgation, the resolution has been extensively endorsed by the free German press and radio as representative of the will of the German people in respect of developments in the Soviet Zone of occupation in Germany. I commend it to the attention of you and of your government as a serious pronouncement by the German people in respect of grave matters affecting their future and that of their country.

The resolution should be considered in the context of the Federal Chancellor’s declaration, made on behalf of the Federal Government, on September 14 in connection with the promulgation of the resolution. The declaration reads:

(Statement transmitted in our telegram 2723).

As in the case of the resolution, there is no question but what the Chancellor’s declaration voices the predominant attitude of the whole of the German people, including those now living in the Soviet Zone.

In transmitting these documents to you, I wish to inform you that they reflect the views of my government. In this connection, you will have noted that the Foreign Ministers, in their communiqué of September 19 under reference, noted that the Soviet Union continued to ignore proposals for democratic all-German elections (of the type proposed in my letter to you under date of May 25, 1950, as yet unanswered by you) and that the ‘elections’ now scheduled in the Soviet Zone for October 15 must be designated as both staged and controlled.

I must now further inform you that if these ‘elections’ are conducted in the manner which all information now available indicates they will be, they will deny to East Germany the high principle of democratic parliamentary government and ignore the democratic processes under which German unification might become a reality, both of which are objectives to which the Soviet Union is committed under the Potsdam and other international agreements and for the breaching of which the Soviet Union must bear full responsibility. The [procedures] under which these ‘elections’ will be held, which prevent the East German electorate from finding it possible to make many choices between opposing policies and candidates, need only be contrasted with the traditional requisites of free democratic elections as enunciated in my letter of May 25, to establish why neither my government, nor the FedRep, nor the German people can recognize them for any more than what they are; a devise to perpetuate in power, under the semblance of legality and legitimacy, a small and unpopular minority [Page 663] dominated by the Soviet Union. The free world will similarly view these ‘elections’ for what they are: a procedure which is reminiscent of the notorious and rejected plebiscite and voting techniques once enforced by the Hitler regime and now characteristic of all authoritarian regimes which fear to trust to the free choice of the people.

Under the circumstances, my government cannot recognize these ‘elections’ as capable of conferring on the East German regime either legitimacy or any rightful capacity to represent the German people now living in East Germany.

On behalf of my government, I, therefore, emphatically protest the ‘elections’ now scheduled for October 15 in the Soviet Zone, and the results they are intended to accomplish, because they will be neither free nor democratic, because they are in violation of international agreements applicable to the development of democratic institutions in Germany, and because they are certain to contribute to an even more definitive partition of Germany.

Because of the obvious interest of the German people in the subject matter of this communication, I shall make a copy of it available to the press following its receipt by you.”

Bonn for Liaison Office, Berlin for Reber, Stone, Lightner, to be delivered 08:30 a. m., October 2, 1950.

Department pass Moscow. Sent niact Department 2722, niact Bonn 53, niact Berlin 186; repeated info Paris 222, London 199, Moscow 32.

  1. Not printed; it reported that the Department of State was inclined to favor the course of action outlined in paragraphs 1–3 of telegram 2624 (same as telegram 49, supra), but was concerned that the letter of transmittal to Chuikov “be phrased in such manner that its sense will not appear to conflict with recent FM decisions, thus giving Germans impression we are trying ride off in two directions simultaneously.” (762.00/9–2750)
  2. Not printed.