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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States, 1948. Eastern Europe; The Soviet Union

Multilateral relations,   pp. 1-732 PDF (280.9 MB)

Page 10

  3. We, therefore, consider that it is essential that a decision similar
to that contained in Paragraph 15 of the Draft Report to the National
Security Council be made at once that in certain circumstances we
would be prepared to send armed forces to Greece. We would have no
objection to a redrafting of this paragraph provided the redraft
would also make it clear that we would be prepared to send armed
forces to Greece if we should become convinced that Greece was in
grave danger and that the presence of our forces might save her.
  4. Recent developments in Greece, including the following, empha-
size how important it is that such a decision be made:
  (a) The announcement by "General" Markosl with strong Soviet
satellite support, of a "First Provisional Democratic Government of
Free Greece' which at an appropriate time, unless further steps are
taken by this Government, will probably be recognized by the U.S.S.R.
or by one or more of the Soviet satellite Balkan states; and
  (b) The launching of heavy guerrilla attacks, with large concentra-
tion of forces supported by artillery, upon certain Greek towns near
the Albanian frontier-with strong evidence that Greece's northern
neighbors are giving increased 'aid to the guerrillas in defiance of the
General Assembly resolution of October 21, 1947.
  5. Among the reasons which render particularly urgent the mak-
ing of this decision are:
  (a) The difficulty encountered by agencies and representatives of
the United States in carrying on day-to-day operations in the absence
of a clear-cut policy as to how far the United States is willing to
commit itself to the preservation of Greek independence;
  (b) The lowering of Greek morale as a result of increasing sus-
picion that the United States and other Western powers are less de-
termined to save Greece than the Soviet Union and its satellites are
to take it over; and
  (c) The feeling among other nations that our policy with respect
to Greece is an indication of the degree of our determination to check
Soviet expansion in other areas.
  6. Lacking such a decision, the Department of State and the 'De-
partments of the Armed, Services, in particular, are almost constantly
perplexed as to the action which should be taken to meet certain con-
tingencies. As a consequence, the United States..Government. is so slow
in countering the moves of international Communism in Greece that
the measures ultimately adopted frequently lack full effectiveness. A
question, for instance, with which we may be faced at any time is:
"What course shall we take in the United Nations in case UNSCOB'
(the United Nations Special Committee on the Balkans, on which
our chief representative is Admiral 1Kirk) finds that the three north-
ern neighbors of Greece are openly flouting the resolution of the Gen-
1Markos Vafiades, President and Minister of War in the "First Provisional
Democratic Government of Free Greece".

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