396.1 GE/6–854: Telegram

Eighth Meeting of the Heads of the 16 Allied Delegations, Geneva, June 8, 11:05 a.m.: The United States Delegation to the Department of State1


Secto 402. Repeated information Tokyo 115, London 257, Paris 401, Seoul 119, Moscow unnumbered. Department pass Defense. Tokyo pass CINCUNC.

Eighth meeting of 16 morning, June 8 conference reflected gratifying consensus opinion and agreement on situation and tactics among all delegations.
Smith confidentially informed group he had explored question composition of body to supervise Korean elections informally with Molotov last night2 and latter made it quite clear Communists would agree only to supervisory body consisting equally Communists and non-Communists, i.e. complete counterpart of NNSC established under armistice agreement. Smith said this only confirmed our feeling that Saturday’s plenary session had clarified and sharpened issues between 16 and Communists. Communists entirely firm in rejecting our fundamental principles of free elections and UN supervision. Smith quoted at length Secretary’s views (Tedul 166 information Seoul 992 and Tokyo 27083) that these two are very strong issues on which all 16 agree even if some would emphasize one of issues more than other, and that Secretary felt also too many minor points of difference among us which might be revealed if we were dragged into exploring Molotov proposal and it is much better to stand firm and united on major issues [Page 358] as 16 now are. It would be highly desirable for other delegations to address themselves to Molotov’s speech emphasizing disagreement on fundamentals and expressing regret that he gave no evidence of willingness to yield on basic issues.
Turning to tactics, Smith said we believe that after Saturday’s session it no longer necessary to have restricted session in order to clarify and sharpen issues with Communists. Indeed restricted session would be undesirable now since it might give impression that we consider Molotov’s proposal genuine and were anxious to negotiate on basis of it. Our side should now concentrate on exposing Molotov’s proposal in plenary. It might be better, however, wait little while see if Communists take initiative in requesting next Korean plenary as they might do in view of Chou En-lai’s statement Saturday he reserves right to make full reply to Smith’s speech.
Other delegations (UK, Canada, ROK, Philippines, Australia, Netherlands, Thailand, Colombia, Turkey) expressed agreement points made by Smith. It was generally recognized that Molotov’s speech contains no concession on fundamentals but was superficially attractive and might confuse public opinion. They agreed restricted session now unwise and desirable to have plenary to expose Molotov’s proposal. They agreed it would be desirable to have few days to consult governments, and let Communists take initiative in demanding next Korean plenary, but it would be undesirable to wait too long and leave Molotov proposal before public without having additional replies to it. Pyun (ROK) preferred sponsor plenary session for our side make “clinching statement and wind it all up”.
Garcia of Philippines suggested that at next plenary some delegations might wish to ask Communists directly question it had been intending to put to them in restricted session i.e. whether Communists would accept authority of UN.
UK, Netherlands, Australia, however, reserved position on desirability of restricted session in light developments at next plenary.
Group agreed that nothing should be done until Thursday morning.4 If by then Communists had not requested plenary, Kural would make contact with them and inquire whether they desire plenary in view of Chou En-lai’s expressed intention of speaking again. He would suggest plenary on Friday and if Communists refuse would insist on having one Saturday.
  1. A set of minutes of this meeting (AD Verb Min/8) from which the time is taken is in FE files, lot 60 D 330, box 14824. The meeting adjourned at 12: 07 p.m.
  2. For a record of this meeting, see the memorandum of conversation by Page, p. 1059.
  3. Supra.
  4. June 10.