740.5/11–254: Telegram

The Ambassador in the United Kingdom ( Aldrich ) to the Department of State


2175. Re Deptel 24021 and para three Embtel 2123.2 Brussels Treaty Working Group to the post Paris meetings of which we have not been asked to attend is proceeding slowly with plans for new organizational setup after ratification of protocols. Present tentative thinking is that member countries should employ same representation in London after ratification as now, namely, Chiefs of Mission serving as permanent reps. If new functions cause substantial increase in work-load, thinking is that additional official, rank of Minister-Counselor or possibly Counselor, shld be appointed to London Missions of member states for work exclusively on Brussels Treaty. If new Brussels Treaty functions bring on still more work, Working Group believes it may be necessary at some stage to establish permanent Brussels Treaty delegations separate from dipl Missions. This, however, is regarded as very much last step and will not be taken unless work-load becomes exceedingly heavy. In this framework, appointment of Amer Mission as suggested by Adenauer in reftel is at very least premature.

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Working Group has considered question of Amer and Canadian association with Council and tentative thought is that US and Canada shld be invited to send observers on ad hoc basis when topics of direct concern to them are to be considered, particularly mil aid, but according to FonOff no decision has been reached pending receipt by FonOff of US views as to form its association might take.

Reason given by FonOff for proposing limited association for Canada and US is in order avoid precedent which cld give Turks further excuse to request close association with WEU Council. Real reason which FonOff gave to Canadian High Commissioner, is that not a few members of Working Group were reluctant include a permanent US observer because they felt that members of US observer team to European defense Communism [community] under somewhat similar circumstances, failed to restrict themselves to role of observers, particularly in connection with efforts to bring about adoption of EDC.

I believe ad hoc observer status wld prove to be insufficient. Addition of new functions may make Council deliberations of interest to US in many fields beyond those which might be said to be of direct concern. Council is also supervising body for arms control agency and will have responsibilities for Saar under new agreement. When military aid problems are discussed, observer will have to take active part and shld, on those occasions, be considered non-voting participant. Therefore, I recommend that permanent observer from Embassy, either myself or appropriate member of my staff (depending on level of meeting) be proposed, such observer to take active part as nonvoting participant in connection with discussion of military aid problems.

I wld appreciate Dept’s views soonest so that they may be fully considered in Brussels Working Group decision on question.3

  1. Same as telegram 1177 to Bonn, Oct. 28, p. 1465.
  2. Not printed; in it Aldrich reported a conversation with Eden on Oct. 28 during which Eden expressed the view that U.S. representation to the Western European Union should be in London. Aldrich also stated that he did not think that the Department of State should adopt a policy of representation that would parallel that of the U.S. Mission to the Coal and Steel Community. (611.41/10–2954)
  3. In telegram Polto 820 from Paris, Nov. 5, Hughes presented “strong reasons” for bringing primary responsibility for representation with the WEU under USRO control. His position was that the United States should seek a role in WEU broadly analogous to that of its present representation to the European Coal and Steel Community in Luxembourg (740.5/11–554). The Embassy in London responded, in telegram 2269 of Nov. 9, that the WEU is an essentially European enterprise which does not cross vital lines of U.S. policy and which would not benefit from an excess of U.S. presence. Its position was that U.S. representation should be informal, flexible, and unobtrusive, without the appointment of a mission to the Brussels Treaty Organization (740.5/11–954).

    In telegram 2861 to London, Nov. 23, the Department of State informed the Embassy that final decisions regarding U.S. relations with WEU could not be made until the future character of the WEU was more clearly discernible. In the meanwhile, Ambassador Aldrich should serve as observer whenever U.S. interests were involved in discussions at meetings of the WEU. USRO would have responsibility for liaison with the Arms Control Agency in Paris. (740.5/1–254)