267. Memorandum of Discussion at the 267th Meeting of the National Security Council, Camp David, Maryland, November 21, 19551

[Here follow a paragraph listing the participants at the meeting and discussion of subjects unrelated to Yugoslavia.]

Secretary Dulles next turned to his visit with Marshal Tito, which he described as “illuminating”.2 The joint statement which he had issued with Tito at the conclusion of their conference (regarding the desirability of independence for the Soviet satellites)3 was in itself worth the whole trip. While Tito had uttered such sentiments as this before, he had never done so in a joint press conference with an American Secretary of State. This joint communiqué had really rocked the Russians back on their heels, and they were currently extremely angry at Tito.

Tito had also thrown much light on the current situation in the Soviet satellites. In most of them the governing regimes were Stalinist hangovers and were currently under very heavy pressure for a change in the direction of greater moderation and a more clearly nationalist orientation. At the moment, however, the Soviet Government [Page 704] was continuing to support these Stalinist hangover regimes. Nevertheless, Tito was confident that the Soviets could not hold out very much longer, and the changes in these regimes would occur in the not too distant future, perhaps in a matter of months or a year’s time.

Secretary Dulles then expressed confidence that as a result of the expression of Tito’s and his own views, the problems of the USSR vis-à-vis the satellite states had been notably increased. They will have to be tougher in handling these regimes because of their fear that if they adopt softer policies they will lose control of the situation. In short, said Secretary Dulles, “they’ve got a hell of a lot of problems.”

Secretary Dulles concluded his comments on his visit with Tito by stating his conviction that Tito was not playing a double game. While there was no doubt that he was trying to get the best of the two worlds, Soviet and free, there was no evidence whatever that he had turned his back on the West and had secretly rejoined the Soviet bloc.

[Here follows discussion of subjects unrelated to Yugoslavia.]

S. Everett Gleason
  1. Source: Eisenhower Library, Whitman File, NSC Records. Top Secret. Drafted by Gleason on November 22.
  2. See Document 263.
  3. Reference is to the statement made during the Secretary’s news conference; see footnote 5, Document 264.