740.5/1–2852: Telegram

The Ambassador in France (Bruce) to the Department of State 1

secret

4524. From MacArthur. Hallstein asked to see Gen Eisenhower today “to pay courtesy visit and bring him up to date on EDF discussions”. He opened conversation by saying EDF Min conf over weekend2 had made substantial progress but there had been several serious developments. He first mentioned Saar and said Fr decision to reopen Saar issue at this particular time had been most unfortunate both in terms of making progress in EDF and also re ratification of Schuman Plan. He explained that Schuman Plan still had to be ratified by Ger Upper House of Parliament (Bundesrat) and that raising this issue this time might cause serious complications re Schuman Plan.

Gen Eisenhower replied this matter did not of course fall within scope of his responsibility and it was essentially political matter for resolution by govts. Hallstein said he fully understood this and had simply mentioned it as an unfortunate occurrence.

Hallstein next said a serious question had arisen in Min mtgs of EDF, namely the relationship between Ger and NATO, which Mins had not previously discussed. Adenauer he said wld have very difficult Parl debate on EDF and wld be in impossible position if he were not able to counteract opposition charge that while Ger was being asked to contribute forces to defense WE it had no voice in (NATO) political decisions which wld govern use of EDF (including Ger) forces. He said realized there was objection “largely on part of Fr”, to Ger joining NATO at this time but that some formula perhaps more theoretical than substantive shld be found to avoid impression Ger was totally excluded from policy decisions and was a second class partner.

Gen Eisenhower said whole question of Ger relationship to NATO [Page 596]was one for decision by NAT Council and that SHAPE cld not get into this since it was essentially political and not military. He recognized there was a complicated problem but felt certain that with maximum goodwill and understanding a solution cld be found. In any event, SHAPE cld not take any position on this question.

Hallstein then said that connected with this problem was military question of Ger being able to have knowledge of strategic concept which wld serve as basis for defense of WE. He pointed out that Ger wld contribute forces for this defense but strategic concept was determined by NATO of which Ger was not member. Hallstein observed that if Ger cld have some means of obtaining knowledge of strategic concept and if Adenauer cld let it be known Ger had such knowledge, latter’s task with Bundestag wld be much simplified.

Gen Eisenhower replied that what Hallstein was raising in a different form was really another aspect of question of Ger relationship to NATO. This was political problem. On purely military side Gen Eisenhower cld assure him that if Ger units served under his command they and their commanders wld be on exactly same basis of equality as other units and commanders. Furthermore, Ger wld be represented in military structure of EDC which by very nature of things wld have considerable knowledge about strategic plans since EDC wld have to support EDF in carrying out of plans. While recognizing there was problem re proper handling of Ger public and Parl opinion, Gen Eisenhower felt that as practical matter Ger had little to worry about when EDF was set up and Ger was participating directly with other countries in defense of Eur. Hallstein reiterated opinion that some formula wld have to be devised if Adenauer were to make successful presentation to Bundestag.

Gen Eisenhower in conclusion said he wished to inquire on personal basis what general reaction was in Ger to united Eur. Hallstein said majority opinion strongly favored politically and economically united Eur and that it was on basis of such a resolution by Ger Parl made about year and a half ago that Ger had participated in Schuman and EDF plans. These he said were both steps which if taken wld necessarily lead to closer Eur integration. This was essential if existing econ and financial problems, such as transfers of civilian and military goods and services between Eur countries, were to be solved. He said he agreed with thesis which he understood Gen Eisenhower put forward that in long term, Eur econ viability coupled with adequate defensive strength cld only be achieved thru uniting of nations of continental Eur so they cld make maximum collective use of their individual capabilities.

Bruce
  1. Repeated for information to London and Bonn.
  2. Regarding the Six-Power Ministerial Meetings in Paris, Jan. 26–27 under reference here, see the editorial note, supra.