740.5/11–1451: Telegram

The United States Delegation at the Tripartite Talks on German Financial Contribution to Defense to the Acting Secretary of State 1


2868. From USDel Ger fin.

1. US and UK reps on comite on Ger fin contribution to def met afternoon Nov 12 with Alphand. Mtg was attended by Byroade2 and by US and UK observers attending EDF conf, Tomlinson, Bowie and Hayter.

2. Alphand outlined proposal for interim EDC common budget which Fr intend to introduce in EDF negots. He said proposal was intended to meet concern expressed in Lon by US and UK reps that preparation common EDF budget wld operate as delay to buildup of Ger forces, but wld avoid necessity for separate Ger natl mil budget which Fr regarded as objectionable feature of US proposals advanced in London for interim arrangement. He said Fr thinking on interim EDC common budget was that treaty shld provide (a) for arbitration amt to be advanced by each member upon ratification of treaty to be credited Against contribution as later agreed and to be used by EDF commissioner to defray normal mil expenses, pending adoption of budget and (b) for approval of first year budget by Council of Mins without necessity for approval by assembly. This procedural device plus advance planning was expected to result in adoption of budget within 2 or 3 months after ratification of treaty. Alphand said proposal had been discussed in prelim way with Ger rep to EDF conf.

3. Alphand also proposed that HICOM obtain Fed Govt reaction to Allied proposals re (a) global amt to be contributed by Ger for def; and (b) division of amt in principle as between EDC and support of Allied forces. Alphand stated that discussions with Gers cld not at this time enter into how funds wld be divided between these two purposes, nor types of expenditure which wld be made from such funds. He said amt available to Allies wld be determined only after EDC contribution established, which in turn depended on final action on questions now pending before TCC re size, composition, and rate of buildup of Ger forces.

4. Alphand was asked by US rep to clarify when he thought talks with Gers in terms of specific figures wld be appropriate. He said this depended on TCC; and that after TCC recommendations were made, such figures might be discussed with Gers but only subj to reservation that final action by NATO pending.

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5. US and UK reps asked whether Fr proposal implied satisfaction of requirements of forces of NATO powers who are not members of EDC wld be residual. Alphand said this was effect of Fr proposal and also suggested Fed Govt might have political difficulties in making contribution to countries outside EDC.

6. US and UK reps asked whether Alphand in position to provide estimate of amt of Ger contribution to EDC which he said on Oct 22 he wld obtain: Alphand regretted he was unable to do so. Alphand said Ger contribution wld not be directly related to Ger mil expenses, but wld take into account relative size of natl products and def budgets of EDC members. He said that in case of Ger, EDC wld also require special capital contribution to reflect lack of military installations in Ger. When US and UK reps asked whether capital contribution wld be available to finance installations which US and UK forces wld require in Ger, Alphand said this point had not been considered.

7. Stevens repeated UK position that cabinet at present time considering whether UK prepared to open discussions with Fed Govt if possibility exists that outcome discussions might result in added def burden to UK arising out of UK costs in Ger or whether discussions shld be postponed until agreed method found of meeting such additional UK costs.

8. In course discussions US rep emphasized desirability discussing with Fed Govt equipment which Ger cld provide for EDF. US rep agreed discussions must be preceded by decision as to disposition security controls3 but emphasized desirability initiating discussions immediately after FonMins have settled security issue.

  1. Repeated to London, Bonn, and Frankfurt.
  2. Byroade was in Paris for the meeting of the three Western Foreign Ministers.
  3. For documentation on the Tripartite talks on German security controls which began in London October 10, see pp. 1701 ff.