No. 839

468.509/1–2251: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in the United Kingdom 1

top secret

3543. Excon. Embtel 4048 Jan 22 rptd Belgrade 356.2 Brit Emb recently informed Dept that Brit rep COCOM Paris had been instructed to inform COCOM that Brit intended to allow freer export both munitions and strategic materials and that although they unlikely be able provide Yugo with munitions items they do intend license exports of Internatl List one goods with few exceptions. Statement to this effect was made to COCOM Jan 8.

Dept now informing Brit Emb in response its enquiry that Brit intentions announced COCOM are in accord with US position and appear consistent with COCOM decision Mar 10 [11], 1950.3 US export control policies for munitions are set forth in separate tel.4 US policy re IL one goods continues to permit exports to Yugo on basis case-by-case review when export appears to be in the natl interest. In practice rejections have been infrequent and confined principally to cases involving quantities in excess of essential requirements.5

  1. Drafted by Huston and cleared with RA, E/ER, the Munitions Board, and the Department of Commerce. Repeated to Belgrade and Paris.
  2. Telegram 4048 reported that prior to the meeting of North Atlantic Council Deputies on January 22, the British representative asked the U.S. Delegation whether the Department of State had formulated a policy on relaxing export controls to Yugoslavia. The French representative noted that the French and British were agreed on the desirability of such action. (468.509/1–2251)
  3. The reference here is to the decision of the Coordinating Committee (for International Export Controls) for a liberalized application of controls on exports of strategic items to Yugoslavia. See footnote 6, Foreign Relations, 1950, vol. iv, p. 70.
  4. Circular telegram 433 of January 26 stated that “time has come, in view urgency taking all feasible measures fortify Yugo will and ability resist Sovs, to permit … the export of strictly mil items provided they (a) wld replace or augment to a reasonable degree weapons already in Yugo hands or (b) involve types of mil equip not now possessed by Yugo and are for training purposes.” (468.118/1–2651) A formal statement to the Coordinating Committee announcing the change in U.S. export license policy was authorized by the Department of State in telegram 4049 to London, February 2. (468.118/1–2951)
  5. Telegram 1002 from Belgrade, January 2, expressed the hope that this policy would be implemented quickly and effectively since this policy would be helpful in strengthening Yugoslavia’s ability to discourage or resist attack. (468.118/1–3051)