The Foreign Relations of the United States series presents the official documentary historical record of major foreign policy decisions and significant diplomatic activity of the United States Government. The series documents the facts and events that contributed to the formulation of policies and includes evidence of supporting and alternative views to the policy positions ultimately adopted.

The Historian of the Department of State is charged with the responsibility for the preparation of the Foreign Relations series. The staff of the Office of the Historian, Bureau of Public Affairs, plans, researches, compiles, and edits the volumes in the series. This documentary editing proceeds in full accord with the generally accepted standards of historical scholarship. Official regulations codifying specific standards for the selection and editing of documents for the series were promulgated by Secretary of State Frank B. Kellogg on March 26, 1925. A statutory charter for the preparation of the series was established by Title IV of the Department of State’s Basic Authorities Act of 1956 (22 USC 4351 et seq.), added by Public Law 102–138, the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1992 and 1993, which was signed by President George Bush on October 28, 1991.

The statute requires that the Foreign Relations series be a thorough, accurate, and reliable record of major United States foreign policy decisions and significant United States diplomatic activity. The volumes of the series should include all records needed to provide comprehensive documentation of major foreign policy decisions and actions of the United States Government, including facts which contributed to the formulation of policies and records providing supporting and alternative views to the policy positions ultimately adopted.

The statute confirms the editing principles established by Secretary Kellogg: the Foreign Relations series is guided by the principles of historical objectivity and accuracy; records should not be altered or deletions made without indicating in the published text that a deletion has been made; the published record should omit no facts that were of major importance in reaching a decision; and nothing should be omitted for the purposes of concealing a defect in policy. The statute also requires that the Foreign Relations series be published not more than 30 years after the events recorded.

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The volume presented here, compiled in 1981 and 1982, meets all the standards of selection and editing prevailing in the Department of State at that time. This volume records policies and events of more than 30 years ago, but the statute allows the Department until 1996 to reach the 30-year line in the publication of the series.

Structure and Scope of the Foreign Relations Series

This volume is part of a triennial subseries of volumes of the Foreign Relations series that documents the most important issues in the foreign policy of the final 3 years (1958–1960) of the administration of President Dwight D. Eisenhower. This subseries comprises 19 print volumes totaling more than 15,000 pages and 7 microfiche supplements presenting more than 14,000 additional pages of original documents.

In planning and preparing this 1958–1960 triennium of volumes, the editors chose to present the official record of U.S. foreign affairs with respect to Europe, the Soviet Union, and Canada in five print volumes. Volume VIII presents the record of U.S. policy during the first part of the Berlin crisis through the end of the Geneva Foreign Ministers Meeting in August 1959; Volume VII (in two parts) documents US. policy on European economic and political integration, NATO, Canada, France, Italy, Portugal, Scandinavia, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the Vatican. Volume IX presents documents on U.S. policy toward Berlin following the Foreign Ministers Meeting with particular attention to the abortive summit conference in May 1960; U.S. relations with the Federal Republic of Germany and Austria; and U.S. policy toward the German Democratic Republic. Volume X (in two parts) documents policies toward Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union, Finland, Greece, Turkey, and Cyprus.

Sources for the Foreign Relations Series

The original research, compilation, and editing of this volume were done in 1981 and 1982 under the Department regulation derived from Secretary Kellogg’s charter of 1925. This regulation prescribed that the Foreign Relations series include “a comprehensive record of the major foreign policy decisions within the range of the Department of State’s responsibilities,” presuming that the records of the Department of State would constitute the central core of documentation presented in the series. The Department of State historians have always had complete and unconditional access to all records and papers of the Department of State: the central files of the Department; the special decentralized (lot) files of the policymaking levels; the files of the Department of State’s Executive Secretariat, which included all the official papers created by or submitted to the Secretary of State; the files of all overseas Foreign Service posts and U.S. special missions; and the official correspondence with foreign governments and with other Federal agencies. Any failure to include a complete Department of State record in the Foreign Relations series [Page V] cannot be attributed to constraints or limitations placed upon the Department historians in their access to Department records, information security regulations and practices notwithstanding.

Secretary Kellogg’s charter of 1925 and Department regulations derived therefrom required that further records “needed to supplement the documentation in the Department files” be obtained from other government agencies. Department historians preparing the Foreign Relations volumes documenting the Eisenhower administration, including the editors of this volume, fully researched the papers of President Eisenhower and other White House foreign policy records. These Presidential papers have become a major part of the official record published in the Foreign Relations series.

Presidential papers maintained and preserved at the Presidential libraries include some of the most significant foreign affairs-related documentation from other Federal agencies including the National Security Council and the Central Intelligence Agency. All of this documentation has been routinely made available for use in the Foreign Relations series thanks to the consent of these agencies and the cooperation and support of the National Archives and Records Administration. Particular thanks are due to the Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library for its assistance in preparing this volume.

Department of State historians have also enjoyed steadily broadened access to the records of the Department of Defense, particularly the records of the Joints Chief of Staff and the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Selective access has been obtained to the records of several other agencies in order to supplement the official record in particular Foreign Relations volumes.

Completion of the declassification of this volume and the final steps of its preparation for publication coincided with the development since early 1991 by the Central Intelligence Agency, in cooperation with the Department of State, of expanded access by Department historians to high-level intelligence documents from among those records still in the custody of that Agency. The Department of State chose not to postpone the publication of this volume to ascertain how such access might affect the scope of available documentation and the changes that might be made in the contents of this particular volume. The Department is, however, using this expanded access, as arranged by the CIA’s History Staff, for compilation of future volumes in the Foreign Relations series.

The statute of October 28, 1991, requires that the published record in the Foreign Relations series include all records needed to provide comprehensive documentation of all the major foreign policy decisions and actions of the United States Government. It further requires that government agencies, departments and other entities of the United States Government cooperate with the Department of State Historian by providing [Page VI] full and complete access to records pertinent to foreign policy decisions and actions and by providing copies of selected records. These new standards go beyond the mandate of the prior Department of State regulations for the preparation of the series and define broadened access to the records of other government agencies. The research and selection of documents for this volume were carried out in 1981–1982 in accordance with the existing Department regulations. The editors decided not to delay publication to conduct the additional research needed to meet the new standards, but they are confident that the manuscript prepared in 1981–1982 provides a fully accurate record. The List of Sources, pages XIIIXVII, identifies the particular files and collections used in the preparation of this volume.

Principles of Selection for Foreign Relations, 1958–1960, Volume VIII

In selecting documents for this volume, the editors placed primary consideration on the formulation of policy on the “German problem” by President Eisenhower and his top advisers. The selection also aimed at bringing together documentation on the most significant U.S. diplomatic exchanges with the Soviet Union regarding the status of Berlin. Memoranda of conversations among the President, the Secretary of State, and other top officials and the memoranda of discussion and policy papers of the National Security Council with respect to basic U.S. policies toward Germany and Berlin were the focus of foreign policy decision making in the Eisenhower administration. These papers have been presented here as fully as possible.

The editors had complete access to and made use of memoranda of discussion at National Security Council meetings and other institutional NSC documents included in the Whitman File at the Dwight D. Eisenhower Library, as well as more informal foreign policy materials in that file and in other collections at the Eisenhower Library. These Presidential files were supplemented by NSC and White House documents in Department of State files.

During the years 1958–1959, the White House and the Department of State worked together closely in the formulation of U.S. policy toward Berlin. Secretaries of State John Foster Dulles and Christian A. Herter (after April 1959) advised President Eisenhower and took part in the deliberations of the National Security Council, while the White House and National Security Council directed the preparation of contingency papers on Berlin that included input from other executive agencies. The Department of State prepared and coordinated exchanges of views and discussions of policy toward Berlin with the French, German, and British Governments and participated in meetings between President Eisenhower and the leaders of these states.

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The editors have selected from the files of the Department of State, White House, and National Security Council records of the most important meetings between the President and his principal foreign policy advisers and between them and their counterparts in the United Kingdom, France, and Germany. They have also included internal U.S. Government policy recommendations and decision papers relating to the question of Berlin; telegrams that document the important policy recommendations of U.S. representatives at the Missions in London, Bonn, Paris, Berlin, and Moscow; and the records of the several quadripartite working groups that prepared reports on Berlin.

In addition to Department of State, White House, and National Security Council records, the editors had access to a body of declassified JCS files at the National Archives and Records Administration. Copies of classified JCS materials were obtained from the Joint Staff on a request basis. The editors selected documents that indicated major foreign policy recommendations of the Joint Chiefs of Staff. The editors reviewed records on U.S. military planning and dispositions in Germany and included the most significant of these.

Editorial Methodology

The documents are presented chronologically according to Washington time or, in the case of conferences, in the order of individual meetings. Incoming telegrams from U.S. Missions are placed according to time of receipt in the Department of State or other receiving agency, rather than the time of transmission; memoranda of conversation are placed according to the time and date of the conversation, rather than the date the memorandum was drafted.

Editorial treatment of the documents published in Foreign Relations series follows office style guidelines, supplemented by guidance from the General Editor and the chief technical editor. The source text is reproduced as exactly as possible, including marginalia or other notations, which are described in the footnotes. Obvious typographical errors are corrected, but other mistakes and omissions in the source text are corrected by bracketed insertions: a correction is set in italic type; an addition in roman type. Bracketed insertions are also used to indicate omitted text that deals with an unrelated subject (in roman type) or that remains classified after declassification review (in italic type). The amount of material not declassified has been noted by indicating the number of lines or pages of source text that were omitted. The amount of material omitted because it was unrelated, however, is not accounted for. All ellipses and brackets that appear in the source text are so identified by footnotes.

The first unnumbered footnote to each document indicates the document’s source, original classification, distribution, and drafting information.

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The source footnote also provides the background of important documents and policies and indicates if the President or his major policy advisers read the document. Every effort has been made to determine if a document has been previously published, and this information has been included in the source footnote.

Editorial notes and additional annotation summarize pertinent material not printed in the volume, indicate the location of additional documentary sources, provide references to important related documents printed in other volumes, describe key events, and provide summaries of and citations to public statements that supplement and elucidate the printed documents. Information derived from memoirs and other firsthand accounts have been used when appropriate to supplement or explicate the official record.

Declassification Review

The initial declassification review of this volume in 1987 and there after resulted in the preliminary decision to withhold more than 15 percent of the documents originally selected primarily because of the continued sensitivity of the Berlin question. Following reunification of Germany, a second declassification review reduced the amount withheld to 4.7 percent of the documents. The remaining documentation provides a full account of the major foreign policy issues confronting, and the policies undertaken by, the Eisenhower administration on the question of Berlin.

The Division of Historical Documents Review of the Office of Freedom of Information, Privacy, and Classification Review, Bureau of Administration, Department of State, conducted the declassification review of the documents published in this volume. The review was conducted in accordance with the standards set forth in Executive Order 12356 on National Security Information and applicable laws.

Under Executive Order 12356, information that concerns one or more of the following categories, and the disclosure of which reasonably could be expected to cause damage to the national security, requires classification:

military plans, weapons, or operations;
the vulnerabilities or capabilities of systems, installations, projects, or plans relating to the national security;
foreign government information;
intelligence activities (including special activities), or intelligence sources or methods;
foreign relations or foreign activities of the United States;
scientific, technological, or economic matters relating to national security;
U.S. Government programs for safeguarding nuclear materials or facilities;
cryptology; or
a confidential source.

The principle guiding declassification review is to release all information, subject only to the current requirements of national security and law. Declassification decisions entailed concurrence of the appropriate geographic and functional bureaus in the Department of State, other concerned agencies of the U.S. Government, and the appropriate foreign governments regarding specific documents of those governments.


The editors wish to acknowledge the assistance of officials at the Dwight D. Eisenhower Library, in particular David Haight, who assisted in the collection of documents for this volume.

Under the supervision of former Editor in Chief John P. Glennon, Charles S. Sampson collected, selected, and edited all the material presented in this volume. General Editor Glenn W. LaFantasie supervised the final steps in the editorial and publication process. Althea W. Robinson, Rita M. Baker, and Vicki E. Futscher did the copy and technical editing and Barbara-Ann Bacon of the Publishing Services Division (Natalie H. Lee, Chief) oversaw the production of the volume. Do Mi Stauber prepared the index.

William Z. Slany
The Historian Bureau of Public Affairs

June 1993