312. Telegram From the Secretary of State to the Department of State1

Dulte 38. Eyes only Acting Secretary from Secretary. For President:

“I dictate this returning from Madrid. I had there a very useful day. I talked for two hours with Franco discussing the broad lines of our foreign policy as regards the Soviet Union and our estimate of the situation in the Near East and explained our policy toward Yugoslavia which is not well understood in Spain. I also urged the desirability of cooperation between Spain and France in relation to North Africa. After this meeting with Franco the Foreign Minister gave a large official luncheon, where I talked with him and with the Ministers of Commerce, Agriculture and Air.

“Everywhere the reception was most cordial. There were many in the streets who waved greeting and thousands at the airport for my arrival and departure who clapped and cheered.

“General Franco sent his warmest greetings to you and recalled your courtesy to his daughter in Washington. At luncheon a toast was drunk to your better health.

“Yesterday’s developments at Geneva indicated what at first glance might be a very considerable acceptance by the Soviet Union of our security proposal. The main defect seems to be that it is premised upon a continuing division rather than reunification of Germany but it seems to accept an area comprising Germany and all or parts of Poland and Czechoslovakia much like that which we had proposed where there will be agreed levels of forces, inspection and the like. Also in contrast to prior proposals which called for withdrawal of foreign forces, it accepts a level to be determined for US, UK and French forces within the treaty area.

“I have not yet come to a final conclusion as to whether this proposal represents a trap to perpetuate the division of Germany or whether it represents a real advance toward our position. At least it is something more interesting than the initial position which they [Page 661] took which was little more than a repetition of the barren European security project of Berlin and your meeting at Geneva.2

“Faithfully yours, Foster Dulles

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 110.11–DU/11–155. Secret; Priority. Received in Washington at 7:28 p.m. on November 1 and transmitted to the Denver White House at 10:35 a.m. on November 2.
  2. On November 3 Secretary Dulles received the following reply from the President: “My grateful thanks for the report in your Dulte 38. I shall pray that the new Soviet proposals are genuine steps in the direction of peace rather than mere tricks to throw us off guard.” (Tedul 49 to Geneva, November 2; ibid.)