65. Telegram From the Mission at Berlin to the Department of State 0
564. Chancellor Adenauer, who arrived in Berlin today for 2-day visit,1 this afternoon addressed specially convened House of Representatives [Page 166] , his first address before Berlin Deputies since mid-blockade in 1949.2 Chancellor reviewed situation since then, saying Berlin had made good use of FedRep’s DM 12 billions in aid and that recovery has demonstrated to world that political freedom basic prerequisite for progress and prosperity.
Paying tribute to Allies, especially United States, Adenauer said: “Our strength would never suffice to ward off assaults from East and preserve freedom in Europe. There should be less criticism, especially in West Germany, of Western Allies, and more understanding and gratitude.”
Chancellor cited Paris declarations Dec 14 and 16, 1958,3 saying they made clear Western determination preserve Allied position and rights in Berlin and should be heeded by all countries, including Soviet Union. Chancellor was profoundly skeptical that any improvement of Berlin status could be achieved at summit, saying any change in status could only be for worse. It clear that Khrushchev’s intentions are to have Berlin and West Germany fall into hands of Communists. Main Western aim should be to maintain Allied rights in Berlin. “Any change would represent surrender of freedom to tyranny. Further demands and surrenders would follow.” Sov threats should not be feared too much for Khrushchev knows that in case nuclear war nothing would remain of USSR.
Chancellor strongly expressed his view that Western July 28 Geneva proposals4 null and void because they were rejected by Sovs. He emphatically agreed with Mayor Brandt that at Geneva West “went to limit of what is bearable.” Nothing could be worse than to resume negotiations where they broke off after Sov rejection.
Chancellor stressed German love for peace and freedom, saying despite many wrongs committed in past great majority of Germans not for conquest and fighting but for peace. He claimed for Germans right of self-determination, which USSR willing accord peoples of Africa and elsewhere.
Adenauer warned that peace is not one-sided matter but can be accomplished only if all want peace and relaxation of tensions. He said: “We want peace but freedom also. And we value freedom because we experienced lack of freedom in Nazi period. It was then we learned what a danger for all mankind an unfree people can be.”[Page 167]
Chancellor warned that 1960 will bring new dangers and that wisdom, vigilance and national unity essential. Unity especially necessary because “we all stand on very thin layer” and must be of one mind on matters affecting future of Germany and Europe. Re Berlin policy he fully endorsed Mayor Brandt’s 5-point declaration January 7 (Berlin’s G–174 to Bonn, G–188 to Dept).5
In conclusion, Adenauer thanked Berliners for upholding freedom’s banner and promised Berlin it could count on full assistance from FedRep.
In reply Brandt pressed point that some improvements in access should be sought in negotiations. Mayor also stressed that close FedRep-Berlin relations had developed with concurrence supreme Allied authorities in city.6
- Source: Department of State, Central Files, 762A.13/1–1160. Official Use Only. Also sent to Bonn.↩
- A more detailed report on Adenauer’s visit to Berlin, January 11–13, was transmitted in despatch 429 from Berlin, January 16. (Ibid., 762A.13/1–1660)↩
- For full text of Adenauer’s remarks, see Dokumente, Band 4, 1960, Erster Halbband, pp. 48–52.↩
- For texts of these declarations, see American Foreign Policy: Current Documents, 1958, pp. 600 and 602–603.↩
- See vol. VIII, Document 488.↩
- Dated January 8. (Department of State, Central Files, 762.00/1–860) For text of this declaration, see Dokumente, Band 4, 1960, Erster Halbband, pp. 22–24.↩
- For text of Brandt’s reply, see ibid., pp. 53–55.↩