762.022/12–1354: Telegram

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


2526. Reference Embassy telegram 2519.2 Parodi sent for me urgently late this evening at direct request of Mendes to talk about the Saar. He said that Berard had had an interview with Blankenhorn today in which Blankenhorn had protested violently against the French Exposé des Motifs on the Saar and in particular against the paragraph discussing possible attitude of the U.S. and Great Britain at a future peace conference. Berard had replied outlining the French [Page 1494] position, which was French Government at first introduced Saar bill as a simple annex to Paris Treaty so as not to require any Exposé des Motifs and had only been forced to change their tactics upon publication of the German Exposé des Motifs, which they had found most misleading and which had caused an uproar in the French Assembly. Blankenhorn told Berard that German Exposé des Motifs was regrettable and had been dictated by electoral considerations. He then said that the question was what should be done now. Blankenhorn told Berard that the Chancellor considered that it might not be possible for him to go through with presentation of Paris accords and Saar agreement to Bundestag on 15th, and that he was considering instead appealing to U.S. and Great Britain asking that a 4–Power conference (U.S., U.K., France and Federal Republic) be convened immediately to discuss the Saar.

Parodi’s instructions from Mendes were to tell me clearly and firmly that under no circumstances would the French Government attend such a 4–Power conference on the Saar, the only purpose of which could be an attempt by the Germans to renegotiate the agreements signed at Paris. Parodi pointed out that Blankenhorn had suggested this 4–Power conference while in London on his recent visit. French feel that Germans are blowing incident up out of all proportion and are using it as excuse to try and get the Saar agreement re-opened before a 4–Power conference.

Parodi said that French Exposé des Motifs, while firm, was not at all violent, and that several paragraphs desired by Grandval had been omitted completely. From brief reading, I feel this is fair characterization of French presentation. Parodi also said that French Govt was making every effort to keep subject out of the newspapers, but could not guarantee success, as document was now in hands of all deputies, including Communists.

As I left Parodi’s office, I found Jebb in outer office, and he told me that he also had been sent for urgently, presumably to receive the same message.

  1. Repeated to London and Bonn.
  2. Not printed; it discussed the release of the French Exposé des Motifs to all members of the French National Assembly and the fact that no French newspapers had published it as yet, although that would soon happen (762.022/12–1354).