740.5/2–652: Telegram

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


4774. Subj is Eur Def Community.

Steering Comite mtg Feb 5 opened with statement by Ger deleg (Blank absent in Bonn) that Fed Govt had authorized deleg to deny categorically that Chancellor had made statement re NATO which press had reported him to have made (see 4740 Feb 52).
Alphand laid before comite draft of report to be made at Lisbon, which he had promised at last Steering Comite mtg that Fr deleg wld submit. He asked that delegs study draft, submit such comments as they might have in writing by noon Feb 7 and be prepared to finalize draft at mtg Steering Comite morning of Feb 9. He pointed out that he believed draft to contain little that cld be deemed controversial by other delegs and hoped therefore that revisions wld be kept to minimum since, if they were to be extensive, it wld be difficult to have report ready in time. Delegs had had chance to see draft briefly before mtg. De Staercke took occasion to agree with Alphand that draft was good job and fair statement of results reached by conf. Other delegs also agreed that extensive revision not likely to be necessary. Alphand’s timetable was agreed to. We will cable draft report as soon as translated.3
There was gen agreement that such outstanding questions as remain before conf wld be resolved after Lisbon. Feeling was that their solution wld be easier after successful Lisbon mtg than it might [Page 610]be now. For this reason, as well as because of shortness of remaining time, Steering Comite did not think it worth while to discuss, before Lisbon, remaining budgetary questions (e.g., what changes may be made by EDC in Ger program for 1953, shall a minimum be set for contributions in permanent period), question of territorial organization of EDF or question of use of forces. Latter two are, however, to be studied further this week by mil and juridical comites respectively.
Steering Comite approved summary, which juridical comite had prepared, reviewing specific cases in which, under present agreement, commissariat can act only with advice and consent of council and cases in which council is entitled to issue directives to commissariat, as well as type of vote by which council wld discharge its responsibility in these areas.
  1. Repeated for information to London, Bonn, Brussels, The Hague, Rome, and Luxembourg.
  2. Supra.
  3. Telegram 4901, Feb. 10, from Paris (740.5/2–1052) reported as follows:

    “Steering Comite EDC Conf met February 9 to consider draft report prepared by Secretariat for Lisbon. With some modifications report was unanimously adopted by Steering Comite. On request of Ger del, it was made clear at mtg that report does not formally bind govts because some of them have taken promises not to accept definite commitments without consulting their Parliaments. However, all provisions in report have been approved by six dels and almost all by Mins.”

    For the text of the report as subsequently circulated to the North Atlantic Council as document C9–D/12, Feb. 19, see p. 230.