762.00/4–1252: Telegram

No. 84
The Secretary of State to the Office of the United States High Commissioner for Germany, at Bonn1


2544. 1. Next six months and especially next six to ten weeks represent crucial period in our efforts to prevent Sov manipulation of unity issue from checkmating integration of FedRep with West [Page 204] via contractuals and EDC (as well as coal and steel plan). Dept considers that strong coordinated campaign must be made (in full cooperation with Fr and Brit) to support our basic policy and convince Ger opinion of rightness of course FedRep pursuing. Our line of argument must be threefold, as follows.

2. First, the current Sov “proposals”2 and maneuvers are intended solely to obstruct the bldg of the new Europe and are by no means intended seriously to bring about Ger unification on basis of freedom. We must continue to expose insincerity of Sov proposals and what kind of unity they wld produce. Real nature of Sov proposals is brought out by answering fol three questions:

What kind of united Ger is Sov Union proposing? Sov Union in its note of Mar 10 stated that a united Ger shld be a “democratic” state. Sov Union means by this an Eastern Eur type “democracy”. As SovZone radio said on Mar 26, the regime in SovZone will serve as “a core of a future democratic Ger”. Fact that Sovs have finally accepted principle of investigation does not necessarily mean they are in fact willing to see an impartial investigation conducted. If Sovs really wanted to hold election at earliest opportunity, as they say they do, they wld have accepted UN Comm machinery for conducting investigation. Sov reference to Art 107 of UN Charter legal quibbling, with which large majority of UN members in any event in disagreement.
What internatl position is Sov Union proposing for a united “democratic” Ger? Sov Govt seeks to create impression that it offers Ger an independent “neutral” position. But one of two things wld result. Either Eastern Ger wld continue to be occupied by Sov troops as at present, which wld permit neither independence nor freedom nor neutrality, or else all troops wld be withdrawn by all powers, leaving Sov troops poised on Oder-Neisse line and Western troops holding an uncertain bridgehead in Fr or US troops even withdrawn from Europe altogether.3 Such a vacuum wld invite aggression and domination from the East and wld permit neither independence nor neutrality. As long as Sov Union holds its present view on world situation, neutrality for Ger is impossible. Sov Union claims world at present divided into two camps: on the one hand a “war camp” led by US and on other a “peace camp” led by Sov Union. This has been their consistent assertion since a speech by Zhdanov at conference in Pol in 1947 which established Cominform. Sovs consider control of Ger key to struggle between these two camps. Until Sovs change this view, Ger neutrality is a delusion. Sov note of Mar 10 says that a united Ger will be a “peace-loving” state. By this, Sovs mean that Ger shld be a member of Sov bloc. As Pieck said on Mar 11, Sov proposal will permit Ger to [Page 205] become “an equal partner in family of peace-loving nations”. On other hand, Sov proposals preclude all cooperation by Ger with Western Europe, even membership in Schuman Plan. Grotewohl, on Mar 14, said that Schuman Plan is “entirely void under inter-natl law as far as Ger as a whole is concerned”.4
What then does the “new” proposal by the Sov Union for a Ger Natl Army amt to? As SovZone radio said on Mar 25 “it is not possible to tear the question of the armed forces out of context of Sov note. The Ger which, according to Sov note, is to have the right to have forces is a democratic peace-loving state. …”5 One shld look at Pol to see a “democratic peace-loving state” with a Natl army (Sov style), whose commander is not only former Sov Chief of Staff but is now vested with such powers as to make the Pol Govt mere puppet in his hand. Sov Union is not proposing Natl army in democratic independent Ger but is proposing to do what they have already done in Eastern Eur: arm the State to the teeth after it has become Sov satellite.

3. Second, close integration of free Western Eur is a worthwhile objective in itself. Ger at very edge of Sov empire is in special danger. Presence of powerful Sov military machine on and near Ger soil and aggressiveness of Sov prop press home to Ger (and Western European) people ever-present threat of Sov intervention and expansion policy. Vis-à-vis this threat it must be aim of every patriotic German to give precedence to policy which will bring Ger protection and security. Integration with Western Eur offers Ger Natl integrity and security. Therefore close integration of free Western Eur contains very guarantee which responsible Ger leadership is seeking today in Natl interest. Emphasis shld also be laid on unique opportunity which now exists to bring to reality ancient Eur dream of unity. If advantage can be taken of this opportunity not only is there promise of new era of peace, strength and prosperity opening up for Eur but jealousies and rivalries which have caused so many wars can be controlled at long last. Ger has everything to gain from such policy and is indeed in excellent position to be leader in it. If it is true that strong undercurrent of Europeanism exists, especially among Ger youth, positive presentation of this policy shld have appeal. Develop theme which is briefly outlined in last para of Western reply to Sov note and in Sec’s statement of Mar 26 (Mar 26 Wireless Bulletin EUB 56).6

4. Third, bldg of Western strength through integration including Ger is entirely compatible with achieving of Ger unity on livable [Page 206] terms, that is, under conditions of freedom, strength and security. Gers must not be allowed to picture themselves as facing choice of integration or unity. That is true only if we think of unity on Sov terms. Those terms as pointed out in para 2 above wld produce a unity which is certainly not compatible with Eur integration. Unity which the Gers want is unity under conditions of polit and economic freedom, freedom from the strait-jacket of Commie rule and Sov domination, freedom from fear and concentration camps, freedom for religious life. Unity of this nature can be attained and maintained only by efforts of strong united West. The policy of peace through strength is already demonstrating its success, as witness the renewed Sov overtures themselves. If Sovs are willing to make small concessions now, they shld be willing to make even more as Western strength grows. The only choice the Gers face therefore is one between unity on Sov terms which wld leave Ger weak, unprotected and prey to Sov domination, and on other hand policy of bldg strength and obtaining security through unification of Western Europe.

5. We must at same time make clear that US is ready now as ever to establish Ger unity with freedom along lines previously enunciated by us and which wld not leave Ger unprotected and wld not prejudice Europe’s hopes for new future. We shld further emphasize that present course of action which seeks to integrate Western Europe and to bring about Ger unity is not only sound course in itself but is only realistic and workable course in face of consistent strategy of obstruction and double-talk of Sov Union.

6. These arguments shld be pressed home vigorously by all US info services and officials at all levels. Wld consider it desirable to circulate this guidance to all consular officers and other local reps. Full Fr and Brit support shld be sought. Maximum use shld be made of statements made by Commie leaders, press and radio which will support our arguments. No effort shld be spared to line up majority Ger support behind current US and Adenauer policy and believe this line shld be taken regardless of form and content of further Sov moves (barring unexpected genuine offer of settlement on our terms).

Foregoing is Dept’s thinking for your background information and will form basis for information guidance.

  1. Drafted by Laukhuff, Ausland, Cox, and Straus and cleared by Lewis, Jessup, GAI, and P. Repeated to London, Paris, and Moscow.
  2. Presumably a reference to the Soviet notes of Mar. 10 and Apr. 9, Documents 65 and 82.
  3. In telegram 2567 to Bonn, Apr. 15, the Department of State advised that the last eight words of this sentence should be deleted and the following sentence added: “This would create entirely new situation in Europe and implications for policies of NATO countries including US are difficult to foresee at present.” (762.00/4–1552)
  4. For Grotewohl’s declaration of governmental policy on Mar. 14, see Grotewohl, Reden und Aufsätze, Band III, pp. 74–94.
  5. Ellipsis in the source text.
  6. For Secretary Acheson’s statement on U.S. policy toward Germany made at a press conference on Mar. 26, see Department of State Bulletin, Apr. 7, 1952, pp. 530–531.