762A.5/5–1951: Telegram

The United States Deputy High Commissioner for Germany ( Hays ) to the Secretary of State 1

top secret

870. Eyes only for Byroade. The eleventh meeting2 with Ger delegates on Ger contribution to European defense was held Friday May 18. Attendance the same as at previous meeting.

The chairman opened the meeting with a reminder to all present for the continued need for secrecy in regard to the meetings, and mentioned leaks to the press which had taken place and shld be avoided in the future.

The chairman then read a tripartitely agreed statement as follows:

[Page 1040]

“At our last meeting we agreed that at this meeting the allied reps wld comment on the Ger proposals for the administration of defense. We have instructions from NATO on the question of the administration of Ger defense. These instructions do not enable us to approve your proposals. We have in any case sent your proposals to our govts.

We feel that we shld now inform you that our instructions provide that the defense administration in Germany shld be subject to some system of allied control. Also, our instructions provide that the functions of a general staff which are (appropriate to the plans, operations and intelligence sections of military staffs, above the level of authorized tactical units, shld be discharged only by an international staff under the Supreme Commander, and shld not be permitted in any German agency.

We examined the list of questions previously raised by the Ger delegation which had not yet been answered and find that until we have the views of NATO we are in position to give a reply only to questions 7, 8, 9 and 10, as follows:

With respect to training facilities and training personnel made available by the Allies in Germany we agree in principle with you that facilities and personnel will be made available subject, of course, to a solution of the practical problems involved.
Insofar as we understand the Ger proposals for accommodations, we hope to be able to adjust such accommodations to the Allied projects without serious difficulty.
Regarding the type and quantity of arms and equipment which can be supplied by the Allies for the Ger contingent, we will give you information on this matter as soon as we have received it from our govts.
With regard to the price of arms, when we have determined what arms and equipment can be supplied, we will then be in a position to tell you the cost of these.

The other questions will be incorporated in our report to our govts as items which shld be brought to the attention of NATO for reply.”

(The Ger questions referred to in the above statement are as follows:

What are the views of the Allies regarding the overall strategic situation?
What is the strategic planning in Europe?
What will be the overall strength of the European forces?
How large shall be the Ger contribution?
What shall be the tasks assigned to us within the framework of the European overall defense?
Shall the Ger units have the same type of organization, training and command as the other units?
What training facilities and training personnel can be made available by the Allies?
To what extent do the Ger proposals for accommodation overlap Allied projects?
What kind of arms and equipment can be supplied?
What [are] the prices of the arms?
What are the Allied views on the detailed work requested by them, which is to be done even before a decision has been made regarding the size of the Ger contingent?
What are the Allied views on the extent of the contribution of the Ger industry towards armament?).

In commenting on the statement of the chairman, Blank asked: “What wld be the mature of Allied control over the Ger administration?” The Chairman replied: “We do not know the nature of such control; it may be in the framework of the European Army or in the framework of NATO, but our instructions provide for some form of Allied controls.”

Blank then stated that if the form of Allied control over Germany were the same as over other NATO or European countries, it wld be acceptable—otherwise it wld not be acceptable, as such control wld not give Gers full equality. The chairman noted the Ger viewpoint and stated this information wld be forwarded to our govts.

Blank then inquired as to whether or not Germany wld be represented on the Supreme Commander’s staff in those functions of the general staff that are appropriate to the plans, operations and intelligence sections of military staffs, above the level of authorized tactical units. The Ger delegation was informed that our instructions provided that Gers may be represented in the international staffs, but that the Allied reps did not know what form and what degree of Ger representation wld be agreed upon.

Blank replied that if Germany had the same representation as other NATO countries on international staffs in functions of plans, operations and intelligence of higher units, it wld be acceptable. If not it wld not be acceptable as this action wld deny Germany full equality.

The Allied reps stated the German viewpoint on this matter wld be referred to their govts.

Blank then outlined the Ger views on the territorial organization for the administration of defense. The Gers proposed to adopt the French pattern of establishing territorial command over an area which wld contain two to four divisions, grouped together in a corps. Each such territory wld be under the command of a military commander of the rank of general, who wld command all the troops in his area and be responsible for territorial problems and administration. The territorial commander wld have a military staff for command of the units, and a territorial staff for administration. He wld be responsible not only for the Ger troops within his territory, but also for Allied troops in his territory, when the Occupation Statute is replaced by contractual agreements.

Blank stated it was necessary to create these territorial commands because the Central Federal Administration of Defense cld not adequately handle local problems, and if attempted to do so wld become [Page 1042] too large. The territorial commander wld be guided and coordinated by the Ministry of Defense and wld have the following responsibilities:

Organization and maintenance of all local installations within the command, both Ger and Allied.
Control of depots, work shops, airfields, maintenance depots, etc.
Recruitment of Ger contingents to include statistical research, medical examination, decisions on selections made, and final induction.
Execution of all measures necessary for mobilization of Ger troops, and any assistance that may be needed for mobilization of allied Troops.
Administrative functions under the direction of the Ministry of Defense which wld be largely carried out by civilian personnel.
Procurement procedure as applied within this territory.

From the above responsibilities it was clear that each territorial commander wld need a military staff for command, an administrative office, and a recruitment office. Each agency with appropriate sections.

In deciding on the delimitations of the territorial commands, civilian territorial delimitations wld be adhered to as far as possible, but the delimitation of the territorial command must not be impeded by land boundaries as defense matters shld be the responsibility of the Federal Republic–and not delegated to laender authorities.

The Gers decided on the establishment of four such territorial commands as follows:

Southern Command consisting of laender Bavaria; Wuerttemberg–Baden; Wuerttemberg–Hohenzollern; and Baden. Estimated population: Fifteen (15) million.
Central Command consisting of laender Rhineland Palatinate; and Hesse. Estimated population: seven and a half (7.5) million.
Western Command consisting of land North Rhine Westphalia. Estimated population: Thirteen and a half (13.5) million.
Northern Command consisting of Lower Saxony; Schleswig-Holstein; Hamburg; and Bremen. Estimated population: Twelve (12) million.

Blank in conclusion stated the problem of territorial commands required a more detailed study, and that these views were only very general.

Bérard (French) asked what responsibility the territorial commander wld have for the maintenance of international law and order. Blank replied that under the Basic Law the maintenance of law and order is a police matter for laender authorities, and not a matter for the military.

Ganeval (French) asked what authority the territorial commander wld have over the Ger troops stationed in his territory. Blank replied that he, as commander of all Ger troops stationed in his territory, wld be an intermediate commander, corresponding to a corps commander. The Ger delegates were informed that the Allied reps had commented [Page 1043] previously on the question of intermediate commands above division level, and those comments wld also apply to the territorial commander as outlined by the Ger reps.

Blank also stated that the territorial commander wld be responsible for the recruitment of tactical air force and naval personnel, as well as army. In the event of war, the territorial commander wld leave his deputy to carry on territorial administrative functions and wld take charge of his corps as corps commander in active operations.

Discussion then centered on the preparation of the final report. It was agreed that the final report shld be completed and agreed upon in order that the Allied reps might forward it to their High Commissioners by June 3 at the latest.

Three copies of Ger translation of a tripartitely agreed draft which covered the first part of the report were given to the Ger delegation.3 After reading the report Blank stated that he was unwilling to have the Deputies confer on comments or changes, as he felt this was a matter of sufficient importance which he shld handle personally.

It was finally agreed that the Ger comments on that part of the report which has now been furnished them, wld be forwarded by the Gers in writing within a week. When the Ger comments were received, the Chairman wld meet with his allied colleagues to see if the Ger comments or changes were acceptable. Questions arising wld be handled on an interim basis between the chairman, for the allies, and Herr Blank. As the remainder of the report is drafted and agreed upon tripartitely, it will be forwarded to the Ger delegates for their comments under a similar procedure, the object being that at the next meeting a final report will be prepared with agreed or disagreed items, upon which the four reps wld take final action.

The date of the next meeting was set for 10:30 a. m., Friday, June 1.4

[ Hays ]
  1. Repeated to Frankfurt, Heidelberg, London, and Paris, eyes only for McCloy, Handy, Spofford, and MacArthur.
  2. At the 9th and 10th meetings on April 20 and May 4 air force and naval personnel and the financing of their training and equipment were discussed. Hays reported on these meetings in telegrams 761 and 827 from Bonn, April 21 and May 5 (762A.5/4–2151 and 5–551). Copies of Buttenwieser’s notes on the two meetings are in files 740.5/4–2351 and 5–751.
  3. No copy of this draft has been found in Department of State files.
  4. At the 12th meeting on June 1 the first nine paragraphs of the final report were agreed, and the reconciliation of the remainder delegated to a committee of deputies (telegram 904 from Bonn, June 2, not printed (762A.5/6–251)). Regarding the final report of the technical committee, see the letter from the High Commissioners to their Governments, infra, and footnote 2 thereto.