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(e) Statement by Secretary Marshall, May 12, 1948
With regard to General Smith's confidential interview with Foreign Minister Molotov, this was directed towards a very definite purpose. There had been in this country a confusion of publicity and of statements or speeches relating to our actions and our attitude toward the Soviet Union. The number of such statements would probably increase as the political campaign becomes intensified. It was therefore felt to be highly important to distinguish in the minds of the Soviet Government between such statements and the definite policy of this Government, which remains unchanged.
Since our basic purpose was to reaffirm the formal position of this Government and to distinguish it from the mass of unofficial statements, our responsibility was to make clear the position of the United States Government, and of the United States alone.
General Smith did not ask for any general discussion or negotiation. We have had a long and bitter experience with such efforts. This Government had no intention of entering into bilateral negotiations with the Soviet Government on matters relating to the interests of other governments. The discussion of any proposals in regard to outstanding issues which the Soviet Government may have in mind must, as a matter of course, be conducted in the body charged with responsibility for these questions. What we want is action in the fields where action is possible and urgently necessary at the present time. I refer to the matters before the Security Council and other United Nations bodies, such as the situation in Korea, questions before the Allied Control Council in Berlin and the Austrian treaty negotiations, where the utmost of difficulties have arisen and stalemates generally resulted. It would be very unfortunate if an attempt were made to sit down at a table and enter into general discussions and have the discussions result in failure to reach agreements, or result in disputes over the obligations which might be undertaken in such agreements. That would do the world great harm. We cannot afford a continuation of such failures. What we must have is successful action where such action is now sorely needed.
189. HENRY WALLACE'S "OPEN LETTER" 1
(a) Comment by State Department on Stalin Statement, May 18, 1948
The Department has seen the press reports of a statement by Premier Stalin in response to an "open letter" from Mr. Wallace. Premier Stalin's opinion that a peaceful settlement of outstanding problems is possible and necessary in the interests of a general peace is encouraging, but the specific issues listed in Premier Stalin's statement are not bilateral issues between this country and the Soviet Union. They are of intimate and compelling interest to many countries and have been under negotiation for the past two years or more in bodies where other countries were represented, such as the United Nations and the Council of Foreign Ministers. For example, the U. N. Atomic
Department of State Press Release, No. 390, May 18, 1948.
Energy Commission and its Sub-Committees have held over 200 meetings and the Commission just yesterday reported its inability to reach an agreement because of the adamant opposition of two of its members-the Soviet Union and the Ukraine-to proposals which were acceptable to the other nine nations represented on the Commission. A similar situation exists with regard to other issues mentioned in Premier Stalin's statement.
(b) Further Comments by State Department on the Stalin 1 Statement, May 19, 1948 1
The Department of State today made the following information available to the press in connection with the Stalin statement:
1. Reduction of Armaments
The problem of the regulation of conventional armaments was discussed in the 1946 General Assembly of the United Nations, and has since been under consideration in the Commission for Conventional Armaments of the Security Council.
2. Atomic Energy
In the field of atomic energy, agreement on an effective plan for international control has so far been blocked by the Soviet Union. The presentation of the Third Report of the Commission marks the recognition of an impasse which has existed practically since the negotiations began almost two years and 220 meetings ago. Fourteen out of seventeen of the nations which are now or have been represented on the Commission are agreed on the basic and indispensable requirements of an international control plan; the Soviet Union, Poland and the Ukraine have been the only members of the Commission to disagree.
Despite its unceasing efforts, the Commission has now been forced to declare that: "It has been unable to secure the agreement of the Soviet Union to even those elements of effective control considered essential from the technical point of view, let alone their acceptance of the nature and extent of participation in the world community required of all nations in this field by the First and Second Reports of the Atomic Energy Commission." In this situation, the Commission has concluded that for the present no useful purpose could be served by carrying on negotiations at the Commission level and has referred the whole problem to the Security Council with a recommendation that it be forwarded to the General Assembly.
The conclusion that further work at the Commission level would be futile does not mean that the efforts to achieve international control of atomic energy are to be terminated, but it does mean that the Commission has recognized that factors necessary to bring about agreement on an effective system for the international control of atomic energy are outside the competence of the Commission. The United Nations is still confronted with the problem of international control of atomic energy and the United States Government is still ready to participate in genuinely effective control.
1 Department of State Press Release No. 392, May 19, 1948.
3. German Peace Settlement
By common agreement the question of a German peace settlement is one for the Council of Foreign Ministers. The Council has held two long meetings devoted to this subject. Soviet opposition to virtually every proposition put forward by the United States, Great Britain and France has thus far blocked all progress on this question. 4. Japanese Peace Settlement
In July 1947 the United States proposed to the ten other members of the Far Eastern Commission that a preliminary conference be held to discuss a peace treaty for Japan, the voting procedure of such a conference to be by two-thirds majority. Eight States indicated general agreement with this proposal. The Soviet Union held that the peace treaty problems should be considered by the Council of Foreign Ministers, composed in this instance of the United Kingdom, China, the U. S. S. R., and the United States. China proposed that the peace treaty be considered by a conference of the eleven Far Eastern Commission countries and that decisions be taken by a majority which must include the four powers named above. It has so far been impossible to resolve the conflict between these widely different concepts as to the basis on which the Japanese peace treaty conference should be convened.
5. Evacuation of Troops from China
As of March 31, 1948 there were stationed in China, of the armed forces of the United States, 1,496 army personnel and 4,125 navy and marine personnel. These forces remain in China at the request of the National Government.
6. Evacuation of Troops from Korea
With respect to the suggestion that United States and Soviet occupation forces be withdrawn from Korea, the United Nations General Assembly, by Resolution of November 14, 1947, recommended a plan for the early achievement of Korean independence, to be followed promptly by the withdrawal of all foreign armed forces.
The General Assembly constituted a United Nations Commission to assist in this program. The Ukraine was elected to membership on the Commission but refused to serve. The U. S. S. R. denied the United Nations Commission entry into the northern zone of Korea. It has not only refused to collaborate in any way in the implementation of the United Nations plan but has attempted to proceed unilaterally with a plan of its own which threatens to lead to civil war among the Koreans themselves.
7. Respect for National Sovereignty and Non-Interference in Domestic Affairs
The facts bearing on this subject are too voluminous for recapitulation here. The actions and policies of the two Governments in this respect are a matter of public record, and speak for themselves. 8. Military Bases
The policy of the United States in this respect has been governed by the unanimous resolution of the United Nations General Assembly of December 14, 1946, which makes the retention of armed forces on the territories of members conditional upon the freely and publicly expressed consent of such members. In accordance with Article 103
of the Charter, the United States has made it a practice to register with the United Nations the instruments of agreements. It is of interest to note that the United States has proposed in the Security Council that armed forces acting under the Security Council have unlimited rights of passage and rights to use bases wherever located. The U. S. S. R. has rejected this proposal.
9. International Trade
The representatives of twenty-three countries attended the session of the Preparatory Committee for the United Nations conference on trade and employment which was held in Geneva in the summer of 1947. The representatives of fifty-six nations participated in the final conference on trade and employment held in Havana, Cuba from November 1947 to March 1948. This Conference agreed upon the charter for an international trade organization, one of the main purposes of which is the elimination of all forms of discrimination in international trade. The Soviet Government declined to participate in either of these meetings.
10. Assistance to War-Devastated Countries
The aid being extended by the United States to other countries on a worldwide scale, through both United Nations channels and others, should be an adequate answer to this point. In the case of the European Recovery Program, in which the U. S. S. R. declined to participate, the proposal to create a new organization came from the participating European countries.
11. Human Rights
The United Nations turned to the question of human rights as one of its first tasks and its work in this field is well advanced. The Human Rights Commission, under the chairmanship of Mrs. Eleanor Roosevelt, may shortly recommend a draft declaration and covenant on human rights to the Economic and Social Council and to the General Assembly. Since both the U. S. S. R. and the United States are active members of the Human Rights Commission, it is difficult to see how this matter could be advanced in any other forum. It lies in the nature of this subject that it is imminently a multilateral and international problem and both the Soviet Union and the United States have, in the United Nations Commission, a wholly adequate forum in which to put forward their views.
190. SOVIET VIOLATIONS OF TREATY OBLIGATIONS Document Submitted by the Department of State to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, June 2, 1948 1
Text of Resolution
[S. Res. 213, 80th Cong., 2d sess.]
Whereas the President of the United States declared in his address to the Congress on March 17, 1948, that one nation has "persistently ignored and violated" agreements which "could have furnished a basis for a just peace"; and
Senate Report No. 1440, 80th Congress, 2d session, June 2, 1948.
Whereas such violations have been proclaimed the cause for inter-. national disturbances which have led to the requested consideration by this Congress of drastic legislation affecting the peoples of this Nation: Therefore be it
Resolved, That the President of the United States be, and is hereby, requested to furnish to the Congress full and complete information on the specific violations of agreements by the nation referred to in the President's address on March 17, 1948, before the Congress; . .
Document Submitted by the Department of State
1. The final delimitation of Ger- 1. U. S. S. R. has repeatedly man-Polish frontier should await maintained that the Oder-Neisse the peace settlement (Potsdam line constitutes the definitive Gerprotocol, VIII, B).
man-Polish frontier and has approved incorporation of territory east of this line into Poland.
2. Payment of reparations to 2. U. S. S. R. has taken large leave enough resources to enable amounts of reparations from curGerman people to subsist with- rent production, has absorbed a out external assistance. Repara- substantial part of German industion claims of U. S. S. R. to be try in Soviet zone into Soviet met by removals of capital goods state-owned concerns, and has and appropriation of external as otherwise exploited and drained sets. Economic controls in Ger- German resources in a manner not many to be limited to those essen- authorized by Potsdam protocol tial to curb German war potential or other agreements. and insure equitable distribution of essential goods among zones (Potsdam protocol, II, B, 15, 19; III, 1).
3. Economic Directorate of 3. U. S. S. R. has refused to ACA agreed, May 24, 1946, that submit report on any reparations each member would submit re- removals from its zone. port on reparations removals from its zone.
4. Germany to be treated as a single economic unit (Potsdam protocol, II, B, 14).
4. U. S. S. R. has consistently obstructed all four-power attempts to implement this principle and has carried out a unilateral economic policy in its own zone. In particular it has refused to cooperate in establishing a common export-import program for Germany as a whole, and in permitting "equitable distribution of essential commodities between zones so as to produce a balanced economy throughout Germany and reduce the need for imports."