The Ambassador in France (Bruce) to the
Department of State
5391. From EE Mission Chiefs. Fol is summary gen conclusions reached EE Mission Chiefs mtg March 6.
I. Policy toward satellites.
With objective weakening Sov grip on satellites, US shld, thru diplomatic means, more frequently resort to UN, propaganda, covert operations and use economic weapons, pursue fol lines of action: 1. Show continuing concern for satellite peoples; 2. Show distrust of regimes; 3. Exploit force of nationalism; 4. Encourage discordant tendencies within ruling groups fostering where feasible trends toward Titoism; 5. Exploit our position in Yugo as means of [Page 13] exerting influence on satellites; 6. Make limited use of exiles where appropriate to support propaganda and covert activities; 7. Encourage selective defection and make adequate provision for satellite defectors and refugees; 8. Conduct policies and operations aimed at multiplying Sov difficulties in satellites and creating situation whereby satellite peoples will be of maximum assistance in case war; 9. Seek to disrupt economic plans of USSR in satellites; 10. Expose false Sov concern for legality re these countries; 11. While avoiding provocation, not be deterred from action serving best US interests for fear Sov reprisals; and 12. Seek to associate other western powers in pursuit our objectives and policies.
II. Maintenance and conduct of relations with satellites.
- At present time advantageous maintain relations with satellites principally because missions serve as (a) sources of info; (b) channels of communication necessary pursuit US policies and protection US interests; and (c) evidence US concern for satellite peoples.
- Recognized it may become necessary break relations if above advantages diminish to point outweighed by disadvantages involved in maintaining reps in hostile countries where they are mistreated and insulted and their effectiveness reduced. Developments which may be significant or decisive in determining when that point reached include: (a) Unjustified arrest and detention US official personnel; (b) interference with regular diplomatic communications between mission and US Govt; (c) treatment damaging to mission or dignity of US going beyond limit of acceptance.
- US shld not tie its hand re circumstances which will bring decision to break. On other hand may be desirable let satellite govt know without publicity if certain course of conduct on its part likely to have that result.
- Decision on maintaining or breaking relations will depend on circumstances surrounding each case. If break with one satellite, need be no automatic break with others or coordinated break by other western govts.
- Consideration shld be given to arrangements short of break such as withdrawal of resident chiefs of mission from satellite caps, multiple accreditation of chiefs of mission, or reduction of missions to caretaker status.
- As gen rule desirable for US chiefs of mission establish with satellite officials relations which are correct and provide ready access to satellite govts, maintaining firmness and dignity and leaving no doubt as to US views.
- Restrictions and harassment of US missions shld wherever possible and practicable be met with speedy retaliatory action. Coordinated [Page 14] action by other western govts sometimes desirable but in most cases shld not be allowed delay US action.
- In conduct relations with satellites may be cases where intervention with Sov Govt useful altho existence diplomatic relations with satellites complicates such intervention. Action in US generally better way to make clear Sov responsibility for improper satellite behavior.
- VOA and RFE are of extraordinary importance for US policy in Sov orbit. They have separate functions to perform; their identity shld be kept separate in minds of listeners insofar as possible.
- RFE activity may have direct bearing on maintenance relations with satellites. Implications of this shld receive urgent study.
- VOA programs to Sov orbit generally well conceived and effective. Major emphasis shld continue on world news, developing unity and strength of free world, and explanation of US policies.
- Commie propaganda having some success in USSR in “Hate America” campaign and implanting impression US driving world into world war III. In satellites, majority opinion continues pro-American and hope is for early liberation even through war. Thus VOA has essentially different tasks in combatting Sov propaganda in satellites and USSR itself. Particularly important counteract influence Sov propaganda on youth.
- In speaking of question Germany and Ger rearmament, especially to Czechs, Poles, Russians, US info services shld stress safeguards against revival Ger power, especially integration Western Ger in European community progressively more united and inclusion Ger units in Eur Army dedicated to self-defense and peace.
- Any US propaganda which contributes to weakening of Sov grip on satellites is worthwhile. Each satellite shld be dealt with according its own history; traditions and special circumstances.
- Info services must avoid stimulation unjustified and premature action or hopes for early liberation which cannot be fulfilled.
IV. Means of retaliation and pressure.
- US shld be prepared adopt measures of pressure and retaliation
against USSR and satellites for purpose of:
- Securing relaxation of measures against US or nationals;
- Retribution for such measures;
- Deterring Commie govts from steps harmful to US interests; and
- Gen pursuit US policy toward Sov orbit.
- Measures wld generally be directed against individual govts but in appropriate cases might be taken against both USSR and individual satellite or against whole Sov orbit.
- US shld make maximum use retaliation in kind consonant with our standards of justice.
- Retaliation shld be taken promptly as possible in order increase effectiveness. Where pressure applied for such purpose as freeing detained US citizen desirable apply such measures as can later be lifted, thus providing basis for negotiation.
- Measures shld be used wherever possible as deterrents rather than retribution. Wherever feasible advance determination of points at which such measures wld be taken shld be made and secretly communicated to govt concerned or made public as circumstances require.
- Fol measures shld be kept under continuing consideration for
- Seizure of assets;
- Curtailment of dol remittances;
- Further limitation or stoppage US export;
- Restriction on imports through delays in consular invoices and application of laws re slave labor;
- Restrictions on travel of US citizens.
- Taking measures by virtue our position in Ger and Austria has limited possibilities diminishing daily in view development relations with Ger and Austria.
- Seizure of hostages not practical measures of retaliation and pressure particularly in US itself. Possibilities for such action exist in US zones Ger and Austria but do not appear promising.
- Dept shld undertake full and continuing study of how to give maximum coordination and effect to actual and potential weapons of retaliation and pressure. Shld make inventory of weapons at our disposal and determine in advance, where possible, circumstances under which they cld be used.
- Efforts shld be made coordinate US action with that of other Western Govts, it being recognized in some cases separate action more appropriate or effective. Study of problems shld be continued in NATO deputies.
V. Operation of missions.
- Particularly important obtain best qualified personnel, selecting when possible some time before they proceed to posts.
- Those who prove unsuitable for service in EE shld be quickly removed.
- Desirable continue 2-year rule.
- Staffs shld be kept to minimum necessary for functions missions expected to perform. Consideration shld be given reduction Moscow staff; however, civilian staff shld not be reduced without corresponding reduction service attachés staffs. Any reduction shld be carried out in such way as to avoid creating impression step taken in anticipation of war.
- Protection of personnel.
- Desirable provide diplomatic passports to staff personnel in certain countries. Realized that this may not afford full measure of safety unless diplomatic status recognized by foreign govt, but any step which decreases risks to which US personnel exposed is worth while.
- Arrest of Western nationals on staffs Western missions in Rumania and Bulgaria matter of deep concern. Unjustified arrest and detention of US staff members wld make it impossible continue diplomatic relations with satellite govt concerned. In view developing situation, may be necessary cut staffs to skeleton size with diplomatic officers only.
- Reciprocity in imposition of restrictions.
- US shld take counter-measures wherever possible and practicable, applying roughly same restrictions on Commie personnel in US as are imposed upon our missions.
- Efforts shld be continued to obtain joint action by Eastern govts wherever practicable.
- Peripheral reporting.
- PR units have proved valuable in supplementing reporting of EE missions and shld be continued.
EE Missions and PR units shld keep in close touch by periodic personal visits of missions reporting officer and exchange of reports. Shld also be maximum interchange of reports among PR units.
Effectiveness of PR shld be periodically reassessed, with attention given its value to other US agencies as well as Dept.