740.5/1–1552: Telegram

The Secretary of State to the Embassy in France 1


4085. For Emb and MacArthur. De Juniac, Acting Minister Counselor Fr Emb, called on Perkins this morning under instrs to ask us [Page 586]to make clear to Drees 2 US support of EDF and US desire that Benelux join. Perkins told de Juniac this wld be done but that our info re current Dutch worries this subj was to effect Dutch more worried about Fr attitudes than about US views. Pointed out specifically Stikker’s worry about Schuman’s remark re ephemeral character NATO.3 Said our understanding was that Dutch were genuinely wedded Atlantic community concept and did not wish to participate in EDF in such a way as to prejudice that concept. Asked de Juniac urge his FonOff do what it cld calm Dutch fears re NATO/EDF relationship.

De Juniac said Fr Amb Hague reports large majority Neth Parliament solidly behind EDF but that Neth Govt less enthusiastic. Within Cabinet identified Drees, Stikker and Lieftinck as being least enthusiastic. We did not challenge this although we had assumed here that Drees by far most reluctant member Cab re EDF.

Expect here to rpt to Drees points included Secy’s conversation Van Roijen Jan 10 (Deptel 904, Jan 11, rptd Paris 40184). Embs Paris and Hague requested let us know whether they wish these or any other points re EDF especially emphasized with Drees.

  1. This telegram, which was drafted by Scott (EUR/WE), cleared by Godley (EUR/WE), and signed by Perkins for the Secretary, was repeated for information to The Hague.
  2. Netherlands Prime Minister Drees made an informal visit to the United States between Jan. 12 and 24. Regarding that visit, see Acheson’s memorandum of his conversation with Drees on Jan. 21, p. 589.
  3. In telegram 686, Jan. 9, from The Hague, Chargé Trimble reported on a conversation with Foreign Minister Stikker during which Stikker quoted a statement by French Foreign Minister Schuman made at the Six-Power Meetings of Foreign Ministers in Paris, Dec. 27–30, to the effect that the EDC would be the lasting defense organization for Europe whereas NATO was only transitory and “essentially ephemeral”. (740.5/1–952)
  4. Ante, p. 580.