327. Telegram From the Delegation at the Foreign Ministers Meetings to the Department of State1

Secto 176. 1. Secretary opened discussion seventh session Nov. 4 by summing up proposals made both sides to date.2 In reviewing progress made toward bringing security positions closer together Secretary emphasized fundamental defect Soviet proposal3 which ignores link between security and reunification. He said subject to this fundamental difference and without minimizing difficult task of converting general security proposals into concrete treaty clauses, there is considerable measure agreement in principle on how to get security in Europe. Fact that Molotov continues ask questions that have been [Page 687] answered perhaps attributable to difficulty in reaching complete meeting of minds until we know both sides proceeding from premise German reunification. Soviet proposal on Germany4 totally unresponsive directive because it says “German people are deprived of possibility living in a united state.” Soviet Government has neither submitted unification proposal nor considered that of Western powers.

2. Pinay repeated previous criticisms Soviet proposal for all-German Council. Said if any better way known permit people exercise free will than through free elections it would have been brought up at Heads Government meeting. Pinay had gained hope with second Soviet security proposal but felt “short-changed” when Soviets announced their German plan. Pinay urged that Ministers had duty on humanitarian grounds put quick end to senseless and unjust cleavage of families, culture, resources and science which Germans rightfully desire have united again.

3. Referring to Soviet arguments concerning “realistic situation” Macmillan said fact that two political entities exist is not bar to reunification but reason for it.5 Dissimilar social structures not an obstacle to unity if one is willing let Germans choose. He repeated his earlier points about comparative degree rearmament in Federal Republic and GDR and asked why hundreds of deserters per month left East German military forces and fled to Federal Republic if latter militaristic. Macmillan then said if Molotov certain that majority Germans East and West opposed Paris Agreements, he should not be concerned about letting same Germans have free choice in reunified country as to whether join NATO or not. In effort pin Molotov down on Eden Plan Macmillan reviewed it step by step and asked Molotov if he agreed that:

It desirable reunify Germany at earliest opportunity instead of keeping Germany divided for present?
Ministers should be prepared discuss method for carrying out instructions of directive instead of reverting delaying tactics?
Safeguards proposed by Western powers would be sufficient insure genuinely free elections?
Four Powers have duty not only arrange free elections but make sure they are carried out under conditions of freedom?
Freely elected representatives of German people are right persons to draft constitution?
It desirable that we should start negotiations for peace treaty as soon as possible with representatives who have been chosen for task by whole German people?
After ten years it is good thing set up democratic all-German Government representative of German people?

4. Molotov dodged Macmillan questions by insisting his own more important questions re Western proposals still unanswered. These were:

Why Three Powers willing discuss German reunification only from viewpoint getting rearmed and reunified Germany into NATO?
Why Western powers refuse discuss security guarantees for Germany’s neighbors?

Molotov then proceeded reiterate familiar and dreary arguments in defense position taken by Soviets on Item I this far. On German question he said “it should be clear to us all that we have common ground in that we all favor settlement German problem and reunification Germany through free all-German elections. Question is what method should be adopted fulfill that task.” He added that Soviet answer was to have representatives of German people attend conference in accordance instructions directive. Proposal for Council defended again as practical and immediate step in contrast evident desire Western powers make mere declaratory statement rather than seek real agreement.

5. Secretary then tabled three power proposal for free elections in September 1956 and establishment of Commission of Experts (text forwarded Secto 1746). Secretary said Federal Republic initiative also behind proposal as well as fifty million German people whom it represents. He had no doubt it also reflected wishes of Germans in Soviet zone. He hoped this proposal would commend itself to Soviet Delegation as concrete and practical.

6. Molotov promised careful study of proposal and in preliminary comments merely suggested again that Germans should attend conference to express their opinion on proposal. He also remarked that allied draft isolated German problem from European security in contradiction link called for in directive.

  1. Source: Department of State, Central Files, 396.1–GE/11–555. Secret; Priority. Repeated to London, Paris, Bonn, Moscow, and Berlin. Copies of the U.S. Delegation verbatim record of the seventh Foreign Ministers meeting, which took place at 3:30 p.m., USDel/Verb/7 Corrected, November 4, and the record of decisions, MFM/DOC/RD/7, November 4, are ibid., Conference Files: Lot 60 D 627, CF 575.
  2. For text of Dulles’ statement, circulated as MFM/DOC/35, see Foreign Ministers Meeting, pp. 127–130, or Cmd. 9633, pp. 68–70.
  3. For text of the second Soviet proposal on security, see Foreign Ministers Meeting, pp. 79–80, or Cmd. 9633, pp. 106–107.
  4. For text of the Soviet proposal for the establishment of an all-German Council, see Foreign Ministers Meeting, pp. 98–99, or Cmd. 9633, pp. 107–108.
  5. For text of Macmillan’s statement, circulated as MFM/DOC/37, see Foreign Ministers Meeting, pp. 130–136, or Cmd. 9633, pp. 70–75.
  6. Not printed. (Department of State, Central Files, 396.1–GE/11–555) For text of this proposal, circulated as MFM/DOC/36, see Foreign Ministers Meeting, pp. 136–137, or Cmd. 9633, p. 108.