Editorial Note

On April 2 General Eisenhower signed the order formally activating the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE). He thereby assumed effective command of all Allied armies in Europe, including forces in Germany and troops stationed in the Western Mediterranean area. General Eisenhower also stated that the proposed European Army would be a very acceptable part of his command when it came into being. (New York Times, April 3, page 8.) In telegram 5867 from Paris of April 2, reporting on General Eisenhower’s remarks at his press conference that day, Chargé Bohlen stated, inter alia, that in reply to a question regarding the inclusion of Middle Eastern nations in the Atlantic Pact, General Eisenhower had said that “as a soldier” he felt the mission of SHAPE “had nothing to do with defense of Middle East. Its mission was concerned only with NATO countries, he noted, and with Western European areas of those countries. General Eisenhower added, however, that he looked with greatest concern on nations of Middle East. He affirmed his admiration for efforts of Greeks to defend themselves from Communist aggression and recalled his excellent relations with members of Turkish military staff.” (740.5/4–251)