Editorial Note

On November 12, the Department of State transmitted to 46 posts guidance for the upcoming Bermuda Conference. The posts were instructed to use the substance of circular telegram 1228, June 24, which had transmitted the guidance for the meeting of the Heads of Governments in July that had been postponed due to Churchill’s illness. Circular telegram 1228 stated that the individual posts should inform the governments to which they were accredited:

  • “1) Bermuda Conference primarily intended permit exchange of views on broad trends and general topics of mutual interest without necessarily reaching conclusions.
  • “2) It will be essentially informal and without predetermined agenda.
  • “3) In any event US Government would not make new policy decision directly affecting the national interests of any friendly power at Bermuda or flowing therefrom without consulting with interested government.” (396.1/6–2453)

In addition to this, the posts were instructed to discourage speculation that the December meeting stemmed from the Soviet note of November 3 or from special concern over Soviet policy or that the three powers were developing an alternative to the European Defense Community. (Circular telegram 192; 396.1/11–1253)