662A.00/5–252: Telegram

No. 26
The United States High Commissioner for Germany (McCloy) to the Department of State1

secret priority

2620. The fol release will be made simultaneously by EUCOM and HICOG at 1400 hours, Saturday, May 3.

“European Command Headquarters made the fol release today:

“‘Embodied in the early planning for the establishment of the EDC and the contractual agreements with the Ger Fed Rep, plans were developed to terminate the occupation mission of the US forces in Ger and to effect a transition from an occupation status to a status of mutual defense in which milit forces of the Fed Rep wld participate.

[Page 44]

“‘The termination of occupation naturally embraces the discontinuance of certain support activities and services customarily rendered occupation forces by the indigenous economy. In anticipation, therefore, of the signing and ratification of the contractual agreements, it has been the intention of the US forces to initiate the phased reduction and final termination of certain of these support activities. It had been hoped that the recommendations of this command, to accomplish this intention which were initiated on a tripartite basis during Oct 1951, could have been agreed tripartitely prior to this date. This tripartite action has not yet taken place, and after consultation with the Dept of Def, it has been decided to initiate unilateral action at once by the US forces in Ger.

“‘In contemplation of an early signing and ratification of the contractual agreements, Headquarters’ EUCOM is directing that steps be initiated at once to reduce, according to an orderly phased program designed to effect the termination of these activities by 30 June of this year, certain support services which do not meet US milit appropriations standards and which are furnished the US forces in Ger from indigenous resources of the Fed Rep. Support affected compromises several categories, principally for personal services, clubs, messes, etc. This action is being taken prior to the termination of occupation in the hope that it will in a measure advance the contribution of Ger milit forces to her own and the common defense of free nations.’”

“Commenting on this statement, the US High Commissioner for Ger, John J. McCloy, said:

“‘I am glad that a satisfactory solution of this matter can now be announced. General Handy and I have always had an understanding that such a step wld be taken in due course. It was hoped that it could be taken on a tripartite basis. Due to the difficulty of exact comparisons between the costs of the US forces and other Allied troops in Ger, a precise tripartite agreement on this matter could not be achieved at this time. However, even in the absence of such tripartite action in respect to these items it has been felt that the US should proceed unilaterally as it seemed clear the time for such action had arrived. EUCOMs announcement is very welcome and is in keeping with the policy of the US forces in Ger to keep costs to the minimum necessary for the accomplishment of their mission here.

“‘I am aware that this step represents substantial modification of certain conveniences and comforts which have been enjoyed in the past and I appreciate the real cooperation which this step evidences.’”

  1. Repeated to Paris and London.