1. Telegram From the Department of State to the Office of the High Commissioner for Austria 1

2288. Department has considered Austrian position Molotov speech February 8.2 Based on translation FBIS text our observations are:

Molotov appears hint Soviets willing accept unilateral Austrian declaration military neutrality with some form Four-Power guarantee outside state treaty itself.
Soviets might also be willing sign treaty and withdraw all troops without awaiting German peace treaty.
Slight ameliorations 1 and 2 above and mollifying tone appear more than offset by other conditions included Molotov statement. Soviets appear now demanding (a) German neutrality prior peace treaty or in any event some form satisfaction re Germany as pre-condition Austrian treaty; (b) non-ratification Paris agreements;3 (c) early Four-Power conference without awaiting ratification.

Thus Soviets offering small shifts but at price as high or higher than at Berlin.4 If addressees agree foregoing analysis we could use it as basis response queries to indicate our view Molotov speech gives no basis improved hopes for Austrian treaty. Among other reasons this might help discourage wishful thinking on part Austrians.5

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Ambassador Thompson concurs.6

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 663.001/2–1555. Confidential. Drafted by Freund, Jones, and Allen of WE on February 14; cleared by Crawford, Kidd, and Beam; and signed for the Secretary of State by Merchant. Also sent to Moscow and repeated to Paris and London.
  2. For text of Molotov’s speech, see Soviet News, February 17, 1955.
  3. For documentation on the ratification of the Paris Nine-and Four-Power Agreements, see Foreign Relations, 1952–1954, vol. v, Part 2, pp. 1404 ff.
  4. For documentation on the Berlin Conference, January 25–February 18, 1954, see ibid., vol. vii, Part 1, pp. 601 ff.
  5. On February 17 the Embassies in London and Vienna reported British and Austrian agreement with the substance of this analysis. (Telegrams 3644 from London and 1811 from Vienna; Department of State, Central Files, 663.001/2–1755) The Embassy in Paris reported French agreement on February 21. (Telegram 3518 from Paris; Ibid., 663.001/2–2155) In addition Gruber, in a conversation with Freund and Allen on February 9, stated that he had found little if anything encouraging in Molotov’s report, but believed that it should be studied carefully. (Memorandum of conversation, February 9; Ibid., 611.63/2–955)
  6. Ambassador Thompson was in Washington for consultations.