668.811/2–2453: Telegram

No. 329
The Secretary of State to the Embassy in Greece 1

top secret

2666. Eyes only Chiefs of Mission, Senior Military Attachés and specific addressees. Paris pass Draper, Reinhardt (Noforn); Rome pass Unger (Noforn); Belgrade pass Harmony.

British and French Embassies have made formal approach to Department along lines foreshadowed by London 4740 and Paris 4754 to Department.2 We understand that British and French démarches to Greece and Turkey have also already been made.

Central problem to which British and French are seeking solution has equally been of concern to us. Problem seems to have dual aspect:

Ensuring that such contingent military planning as may develop from Yugoslav, Greek, Turkish military discussions be cleared with NATO military (not civil) authorities, as being consonant with NATO military planning and
Reassuring NATO members that Greek and Turk responsibilities vis-à-vis NATO (including Greek and Turkish obligation consult under Article 4 NAT) will be in fact honored, and that NATO commitments not in fact extended.

Embassies London and Paris please discuss following US proposals to meet this problem with respective Foreign Offices, with request for urgent comment.

We tend to believe, particularly in light of C–M (52)(131), Italian statement on MC–14/13 at December Ministers meeting, that it would be very unwise to have any aspect of tripartite treaty, or of contingent military planning to flow therefrom, come before Council in a way that would force the Italians to take dissenting position. Therefore we suggest:

Notification of terms of treaty to NAC by Greek and Turks following signature, with explanation that it does not extend NAT obligations, and assurance to NAC that military plans developed as result of treaty will be coordinated by Greece and Turkey with appropriate NATO command to make sure plans of Greeks and Turks are consonant with NATO plans. Greeks and Turks should add that they contemplate consultation under Article 4 NAT in connection any emergency or unprovoked aggression which would raise question of implementation contingent plans.
Assume that Italian permanent representative could go along with mere “notation” of this statement.

If British and French concur, Embassies Athens and Ankara are authorized, preferably on joint basis with British and French colleagues, approach Greeks and Turks along foregoing lines, so that action may proceed soonest. Rome should not raise this matter with Italians, but may once British and French approval received, use substance this telegram if De Gasperi should raise this question.

In view above we do not believe action vis-à-vis Greeks and Turks requested of us by UK and France is now necessary. In our view, our position regarding necessity for some form of consultation with NATO has already been made adequately clear to both Greeks and Turks in course series informal discussions our representatives have had with them during negotiations leading to Friendship Pact. What remains, as between ourselves, Greece and Turkey, is to clarify the form such consultation should take, which above proposals are designed to do.4

  1. Drafted by Marcy and Wolf; cleared in RA, GTI, WE, BNA, EUR, C, and Defense; and signed for the Secretary by Barbour. Also sent to Paris, Ankara, and London and repeated for information to Belgrade and Rome.
  2. Telegram 4740 from London, Feb. 24, reported that the British Government agreed with the United States that the Greeks and Turks should submit to NATO any plans for implementing military cooperation with Yugoslavia. (668.811/2–2453) Telegram 4754 from Paris, Feb. 24, conveyed similar sentiments from the French Government. (760.5/2–2453)
  3. Neither found in Department of State files.
  4. According to telegram 4913 from Paris, Mar. 4, the French agreed to concert with the United States and United Kingdom in making a démarche in Athens and Ankara along the lines of that proposed in this telegram. (760.5/3–453) On Mar. 6, the British similarly agreed. (Telegram 4961 from London, Mar. 6; 760.5/3–653)