No. 694
Editorial Note

On the basis of decisions reached in the meeting of March 4 (see the memorandum of conversation, supra). Minister Lawson was instructed in telegram 152 to Reykjavik, March 17, to “continue to exploit every feasible opportunity to proceed with negotiations for additional facilities consistent with overriding political considerations.” (711.56340B/3–1753) For reasons having to do with the parliamentary election campaign then underway in Iceland, the reopening of negotiations proved impossible during the spring and summer of 1953. The results of the election of June 28 further complicated prospects of negotiations because of the inability of any single party or coalition to form a government. By the time a government was finally formed on September 11, a question had arisen in Washington as to whether adequate funds then existed for the development of the military concessions which the United States desired from Iceland. (Letter from Matthews to Wilson, September 18; 711.56340B/5–453) By the time this question had been answered affirmatively (letter from Halaby to Dulles, October 6; 711.56340B/10–653), it had become clear that the attitude of the new Icelandic Government toward the resumption of negotiations was anything but favorable. (See the memorandum from Raynor to Merchant, infra.)