762A.5/10–2151: Telegram

The Chargé in France (Bonsal) to the Secretary of State 1


2329. Subj is Ger financial contribution to defense. Alphand discussed with Emb reps yesterday Fr views re Ger financial contribution to EDF and support of Allied forces in Germany. While stressing Fr still examining prob, he summarized his present thinking as follows:

FedRep financial obligation to EDF shld be first claim against its financial contribution to Def.
Basic EDF conception is that each member is contributing its fair share in men and money for support of single def force and not for support of components of its nationality. Financial contribution of each member to EDF will therefore be based on its fair share of total budget of EDF and not on costs of training, support and equipping forces of its nationality. Relation between such costs and financial contribution of each member will vary at different stages of build-up of EDF.
Tentative Fr view is that FedRep shld contribute about same amount to EDF as France. Since other members will at outset be contributing greater capital assets in equipment and facilities than Fed-Rep, they may be entitled to credits for these which Ger wld be expected to match over period of time by its contributions.
Fr capacity to contribute to EDF will be limited by costs of Indochina and Fr overseas navy if this is not included in EDF. Alphand used a figure of around 600 billion francs for Fr EDF contribution recognizing this wld depend on TCC exercise and on expenditures to be included in EDF budget.
If Ger contribution to EDF were merely to match Fr on this basis, it wld amount to 7 billion marks. If, however, it shld be agreed that Ger shld match initial capital contribution of other members prorated over three to five years, this might add substantially more to FedRep annual obligation to EDF.
Alphand assumed Ger might contribute total of 10 to 12 billion marks to western def in order to equal effort of other Eur nations. If FedRep obligation to EDF does not absorb full amount of this contribution, [Page 1657] then Ger shld be expected to assume some of costs of NATO troops in Ger by building infra-structure, operating facilities and providing services.
EDF conf has been postponing detailed consideration of EDF budget pending at least initial results from TCC exercise. Fr in particular have felt it was important for EDF conf and TCC to be using same planning figures. However, need to arrive at clearer policy for London talks seems to have convinced them that even if only for own purposes, budget planning figures for EDF conf shld be prepared at once.
Alphand stated that arrangements had now been made for London dels to receive planning figures on size and costing of EDF forces of Ger origin. He stated also that France had agreed to preparation in London of estimates of costs for Fr and other Allied forces stationed in Ger without prejudice their position on use of these estimates.2

  1. Repeated to London for Reinstein and to Frankfurt.
  2. On October 23 the U.S. Delegation reported that Alphand had discussed the relationship of contractual arrangements, the EDF, and a German financial contribution with representatives of the British and U.S. Delegations along these same lines. Alphand stressed that a common budget was an essential part of the French conception of the EDF and that France could not contemplate an interim solution involving a German defense budget. Telegram 1995 from London, October 23 (740.5/10–2351).