740.5/9–2051: Telegram

The United States Delegation at the Seventh Session of the North Atlantic Council to the Acting Secretary of State 1

Secto 33. Fol receipt of instr by Danish FonMin permitting him vote favorably, NAC this p. m. agreed recommend to govts they take steps accordance their respective procedures to enable invitation be extended to Greece–Turkey to accede NAT. Matter came to council for action in form recommendation from CD that council adopt res, and take note [Page 685] of protocol which CD members proposed sign on behalf of govts when duly authorized.

Protocol had to be entirely separate document because, contrary earlier indications (Secto 19, Sept 18)2 Fr delegation unable accept, for domestic political reasons, US procedure suggested under which protocol was annexed to res. It was therefore impossible to commit council fully to protocol itself. No major substantive changes in text of protocol or proposed amendment Art 6 which appears therein (but not in res). Text of amendment as follows:

“For the purpose of Art V an armed attack on one or more of the parties is deemed to include an armed attack (1) on the territory of any of the parties in Europe or North America, on the Algerian departments of France, on the territory of Turkey and on the islands of any of the parties in the North Atlantic area north of the Tropic of Cancer; (2) on the forces, vessels or aircraft of any of the parties, when in or over these territories or any other area in Europe in which occupation forces of any of the parties were stationed on the date when the treaty came into effect, or the Mediterranean Sea or the North Atlantic area north of the Tropic of Cancer.”

Van Zeeland, as outgoing chairman, has formally notified Gr and Turk Ambs in Ottawa, five p. m. today (ref Secto 22, Sept 19).2

When debate resumed on Gr–Turk in council this p. m. Nor and then Denmark announced their agreement followed later by Port and Netherlands, subj to same reservations as before incl principle of equality of rights and obligations. Morrison stated imperative enter into preliminary discussions with Gr and Turk and that US proposed to make exploratory approach.

Debate ensued when Stikker insisted he wld be unable explain command position to his Parliament and thought preliminary discussions shld be held first with all members NAT before they were undertaken with Gr–Turk. If this not done, action in some legislatures might be prejudiced. Stikker also objected to Fr suggestion that Gr–Turk might be present at Rome as observers as this wld be prejudice freedom of decision by govts who had to ratify necessary steps to admit. Fr suggestion was then dropped.

One other difficulty which arose was objection Italy to any amendment Art 6, and its suggestion that treaty be amended by interpretation. This suggestion also dropped.

Although Stikker had pressed his point, debate passed off with no evidence of serious lack of harmony and US, UK and Fr paid tribute to spirit in which Danes and others had accommodated themselves to views of majority.

In course of debate, Acheson alluded to words “armed attack” in Articles 5 and 6 and said he felt it valuable to recall that general interpretation [Page 686] these words has been and is that such attack was one of national significance and not merely local incident as for instance one due to mistake of subordinate mil commander. This was, he felt, reflected in Art 5 language that each party shld take “such action as it deemed necessary” and thus reaction govts cld be adapted to nature and seriousness of attack.

  1. Repeated to The Hague, Paris, Oslo, Copenhagen, London, Rome, Brussels, Frankfurt, Ankara, and Athens.
  2. Not printed.
  3. Not printed.