740.5/6–2351: Telegram

The Ambassador in France ( Bruce ) to the Secretary of State 1


8040. Eur army conf met in plenary session 22 June. Alphand presented status work and comments as fols:

Reiterated objective of obtaining max mil integration, compatible with mil effectiveness, as essential step in Eur unification. Emphasized need for close liaison between Eur army plans and NATO but considered that detailed determination of relations can be arrived at only through discussion with NATO. Restated French aim that no discrimination shld exist in Eur army except as unavoidable due to differences in circumstances of participants, such as having forces in being and outside obligations. States that obvious link existed between Eur army conf and Bonn discussions, which must be considered concurrently since in his view no solution cld be derived from Bonn report alone due to fact that Gers will not accept all terms of Brussels [Page 799] report and others wld not accept Ger Bonn proposals; hence, impasse exists with implied solution being Eur army formula.

Alphand announced intent to complete a report to govts by 10 July. It will represent no commitment but indicate areas of agrmt and disagreement and provide basis for considering Eur army activities in conjunction with Bonn report. Subsequent actions of conf will then depend on govt decision, either to provide dels with new instructions, or to hold mtg of mins to resolve major differences. Technical discussion will continue however.2

Principal differences remaining are: (a) size basic unit and level of integration, (b) def commissariat to be headed by one commissioner or a comite, (c) powers of assembly on budget, and (d) degree of detail (such as status of forces, etc) to be included in initial treaty. These issues will probably not be resolved by 10 July report.

Itals made statement to effect that Italy’s cautious participation to date, and emphasis on cutting powers assembly, did not mean they don’t support Eur army idea, but a representation here has not had continuing instructions from Rome since they did not wish to solicit same until our work had been complete to present an overall picture. July 10th report will provide basis for Ital Govt to consider accomplishments so far and, thereafter, they may wish to participate more actively. Del is however certain that govt will be pleased with progress achieved.

Roediger, Ger, made statement to effect that given more time a good many more issues cld be covered, and the magnitude of the proj called for progressing thoroughly and cautiously. Gers desire that as many issues as possible be covered, in principle, in the treaty since answers thereon will have to be provided to parliaments in order that they can consider where such a treaty will lead to ultimately. This requirement precludes pushing off issues on def commissioner for later resolution, as French have frequently suggested.

Roediger further stated that Ger cannot divorce Eur army from other polit issues such as revision of occupation statute, nor cld treaty be signed until these issues (those presented at Bonn) were settled; hence, Bonn and Eur army activities must be brought together soonest.

Alphand suggested that press silence no longer nec now that elections [Page 800] were over, and recommended that the conf permit the release of a statement of today’s mtg indicating conf was active. All agreed, but details were not to be divulged as yet.

  1. This telegram was repeated for information to London, Frankfurt, Copenhagen, Brussels, Rome, Oslo, The Hague, Lisbon, Ottawa, and: Luxembourg, and copies were made available to the Department of Defense.
  2. Telegram 7836, June 17, from Paris, not printed, reported that the Steering Committee of the European army conference had agreed to submit a report to the participating governments outlining the progress of the conference to date and including agreed, disagreed, and reserved articles of the proposed treaty. French Delegate Alphand declared that the North Atlantic Council should be informed of the results obtained at the conference in view of the considerable differences revealed in the discussions between Allied and German representatives at the Bonn conversations on Germany’s contribution to European defense. Ambassador Bruce interpreted Alphand’s position to indicate that the French hoped that the report on the European army conference might allow the deadlock in the Bonn conversations to be bypassed and that the French might be willing to give in on the question of German divisions with a European army framework. (740.5/6–1751)