320/5–951: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the United States Representative at the United Nations (Austin)1


914. A. There is transmitted in immediately fol tel text of response US proposes to submit to Para 8 of GA Uniting for Peace Res,2 which recommends that “each Member maintain within its national armed forces elements so trained, organized and equipped that they cld promptly be made available, in accordance with its constitutional processes, for service as UN unit or units, upon recommendation by SC or GA, without prejudice to use such elements in exercise right individual or collective self-defense recognized Art 51.”

B. Response has been fully cleared within State and Defense. Dept plans however before consultations with other Govts to consult with appropriate congressional leaders. Accordingly, response shld not be discussed with reps of other Govts until such time as Dept has informed you that congressional consultations are completed.

C. When authorized by Dept pls discuss and in your discretion leave memo with UK and Fr Dels making fol points:

In our view development general collective security program envisaged in Uniting for Peace Res particularly important present time as best means strengthening UN as agency for collective action to maintain and restore peace. While collective action under UN, including military aspects as exemplified by Para 8, constitutes element of total program to strengthen UN which needs great emphasis now, UK and France shld be reassured this does not indicate intention on our part to eclipse or disparage equally important aspects of UN in [Page 643]field of pacific settlement. Present emphasis made necessary because Kor experience and because, principally through Sov intransigence, development of security machinery as originally envisaged in Charter has been delayed five years.
In view above and lapse time since passage Res last Nov, important Members respond promptly to recent request by CMC that they report steps taken carry out Para 8. While impractical to seek obtain identical responses or negotiate out form of responses, because of individual problems, general harmony and consistency among responses UK, France and US and other friendly Govts desirable since character these responses will have important effect upon nature and substance of development of entire collective security program under Uniting for Peace Res.
We believe militarily powerful UN nations shld show by their responses that substantial elements their military strength are behind UN and that they regard seriously collective security functioning of UN. In case of NAT countries particularly, it is important that their responses indicate that in situation where NATO action is authorized or endorsed by UN, as we assume it wld be in event of attack in NAT area, forces maintained in Eur under NAT will also be operating on behalf of UN. For this purpose responses shld in our view do more than refer to a general relationship between UN Charter and NAT. They shld to greatest extent possible establish link between NATO action and UN action in appropriate circumstances without in any way casting doubt upon autonomy of NATO to act independently regardless of whether UN has acted or will act, and without implying definite obligation use integrated NATO forces in support UN action.
Responses by militarily powerful members may of course also usefully indicate that in addition particular types of units (e.g. a number of divisions) are specifically maintained for possible UN use. US is hopeful that maximum number of members will respond in this way in order facilitate process of collation and make CMC plans for coordinated use on more realistic base. US is not itself indicating any additional particular units because of large quantities US forces now in Korea in UN service which are referred to in US response.
Proposed US response designed accomplish above purposes without interfering with planning and implementing programs under NATO or other commitments.

D. After obtaining views UK and Fr, we plan raise matter with other NATO countries which are UN Members, perhaps through Deputies, in order seek general understanding and consistency among responses, particularly as respects references to NATO.

E. As soon as congressional consultations are completed you shld also inform all friendly non-NATO UN Members of general nature of our proposed reply indicating that that part of our reply relating to NAT obligations presents special problems which we plan to talk over with NATO countries. You shld, accordingly, not show non-NATO countries the actual text of our proposed reply until after consultations outlined in C and D above are completed.

[Page 644]

F. When consulting LA Dels fol points shld be made: Attention shld be called to special AmRep interest in this matter stemming from IAM approval Res emphasizing concepts Uniting for Peace Res as related both to defense of Continent and support UN collective security efforts.3 You shld also make it clear that, while we understand thoroughly that that Govt’s response will depend upon its own estimate of its capabilities and other circumstances which will distinguish it from that of US, this Govt believes that replies of even a tentative nature from as many govts as possible will have constructive effect and will demonstrate that serious consideration being given to means whereby ability of UN to develop system of effective collective security can be strengthened.

This tel being rptd via air to all friendly UN Members.

  1. Repeated to 52 posts and for information to London as 5134 for Spofford and to Paris as 5968 for MacArthur.
  2. Telegram 915 to New York, May 9, is not printed. The text transmitted in telegram 915 consisted of the numbered paragraphs of the letter transmitted to Secretary-General Trygve Lie on June 8. For text of that communication, see infra.
  3. For documentation on the Fourth Meeting of Consultation of the Foreign Ministers of the American Republics, Washington,, March 26–April 7, 1951, see vol. ii, pp. 925 ff.