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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1949. Western Europe

Multilateral relations,   pp. 1-616 PDF (232.3 MB)

Page 438

,man in recent months and which we imagine he will stress at forth-
coming meeting of OEEC.
  Spaak said that until what he termed "mystery" of Brit policy
revealed European union was impossible on either economic or politi-
cal plane. He launched into diatribe on British devaluation of pound
and insisted that this measure would be as fruitless as it was unneces-
*sary since British had now imposed upon all of Western Europe as
well as themselves task of producing from 1/3rd to 1/6th more goods
in order to earn same amount of dollars.
  Former Prime Minister said that it was beyond his comprehension
how British leaders could fail to understand that US taxpayer was
getting tired and could not be expected indefinitely to contribute to
ECA or other aid projects unless there was tangible proof that this
great investment was bringing constructive return. However, in his
recent talk with Cripps he saw no evidence of such a comprehension.
He admitted, however, that trouble was deeper than merely Cripps
fanaticism since decisions of Brit Govt. are taken by entire Cabinet
land not by one minister.
  Spaak said that there was sufficient foundation in Europe now for
successful economic collaboration if continental countries could be as-
-sured of sincere and unselfish British cooperation. He cited specifically
OEEC in economic field and 2 organs of Council of Europe: Com-
mittee of Ministers and the Assembly. More elaborate organization
Spaak did not feel necessary at this juncture but he stressed repeatedly
that what was essential was a greater regard by Brit Govt. for its
responsibilities vis-a-vis Europe. He did not think that Britain could
get along with Commonwealth only and that it was a dangerous
fallacy to assume that Brit could "go it alone" independently of
  Spaak will be in Paris November 7 and 8 for meeting of Council of
Europe Committee and it might be useful for HIoffman and Harriman
to sound out his views personally. We do not feel that his somber view
is inspired by personal pique as result of Cripps and Bevin's opposi-
tion to using his talents in OEEC. Rather his feeling is statesman-like
and based on genuine mystification as to why Brit leaders have failed
to realize where broad interests of their country lie.
                         Editorial Note
  On October 31 ECA Administrator Paul G. Hoffman addressed the
OEEC Council at Paris with respect to the United States attitude
toward the political and economic integration of Western Europe. A

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