396.1 GE/5–654: Telegram

The United States Delegation to the Embassy in Korea


44. Sent Department Secto 112 priority. Department pass Defense. Re Seoul 1119 repeated Geneva 48,1 and Department’s 893 to Seoul, Tosec 81 to Geneva.2 Am greatly disappointed will not be possible present Plan B proposal at plenary tomorrow. Pressure for presentation some plan along lines “B” mounting among other delegations, and while a few more general debate speeches are anticipated, we cannot get much further until all on allied side have proposal around which they can rally.

Do not understand Rhee’s preference for UN over UNCURK. We cannot expect to have more favorable composition on any UN body than present membership UNCURK. Substitution of unspecified UN body at this stage reopens question of composition of UN commission, and to that extent goes back on past UN resolutions which we insist should be maintained. Insistence on UNCURK at this stage gives us much better bargaining position. Therefore suggest Department will wish modify instructions contained paragraph 5 Tosec 81.

Entirely concur paragraph 7 Tosec 81 on necessity UNCURK supervision rather than simply observation.

While we appreciate Rhee’s point with regard to withdrawal Chinese Communist forces prior to elections, must recognize impracticable without simultaneous withdrawal UN forces and dangers inherent in completing withdrawal UN forces prior to assurance unification plans being implemented in good faith by Communists.

Full protection for ROKs under Plan B lies in (1) recognition ROK only lawful government in Korea; (2) elections under UNCURK supervision only after safeguards for conditions genuine freedom before, during and after elections assured; (3) proportional representation of North Korea in National Assembly.

Important we not get bogged down in drafting details between Geneva, Washington and Seoul, but stick to basic principles in discussions with Rhee. Communists are not going to accept any proposal containing these principles. If through any chance they do accept basic principles, negotiation of agreement would be long process in which details of drafting would be very important and in which closest consultation between Geneva, Washington and Seoul would be essential.

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Phrases such as “formation of all-Korean Government”, paragraph III proposal, should be accepted by Rhee as desirable “window-dressing”, the substance of the US–UN position that ROK is only lawful government in Korea.

Will telegraph clean draft taking into account points brought out Washington and Seoul telegrams.

Yang said last night Pyun and ROK delegate had strongly urged Rhee accept proposal with amendments agreed upon with Robertson and Young.

  1. Dated May 5, p. 205.
  2. Dated May 5, p. 209.